In this gripping collection of stories, Lalli—sixty, silver-haired and tough as nails—solves some of the strangest cases of her career. A face keeps reappearing in unlikely places, until a crime of jealousy committed long ago is revealed. Letters from a dead woman hint at a murder that may or may not have happened. A hate-fuelled book-burning claims a life in horrific fashion; and a serial killer turns up in the studio of a famous fashion designer. A suicide in a Mumbai suburb turns out to be something far more sinister; and a harmless desk ornament becomes a clue to a crime most artistically executed. Finally, for connoisseurs of crime fiction, the curtains come down with a story about lost love and a subtle, surprising revenge.
‘A crackling read…In seven stories, Lalli walks through a maze of family politics, right-wing lunacy, high fashion and more with her customary sangfroid.’—The Hindu
‘Masterfully plotted…[A] page turner.’—Open
‘Sometimes, even the committed crime fiction reader, like a cop who has seen too many corpses, begins to tire of the genre. That’s probably a good time to read Kalpana Swaminathan…I found great joy in Murder in Seven Acts.’—The Indian Express
‘Swaminathan’s stories are more than just crime and suspense. It is elegant writing that grows on the reader like music.’—The Book Review