book cover of The Widows of Malabar Hill
Added by 100 of our members
 

The Widows of Malabar Hill

(2018)
(A Murder at Malabar Hill)
(The first book in the Perveen Mistry series)
A novel by

 
 
Awards
Agatha Award Best Historical Novel
1920s India: Perveen Mistry, Bombay's only female lawyer, is investigating a suspicious will on behalf of three Muslim widows living in full purdah when the case takes a turn toward the murderous. The author of the Agatha and Macavity Award–winning Rei Shimura novels brings us an atmospheric new historical mystery with a captivating heroine.

This Deluxe Edition features: an interview with the author, discussion questions, essays on the real-life inspirations behind the novel, delicious recipes taken from the story, and previews of The Satapur Moonstone (May 2019).

Perveen Mistry, the daughter of a respected Zoroastrian family, has just joined her father's law firm, becoming one of the first female lawyers in India. Armed with a legal education from Oxford, Perveen also has a tragic personal history that makes women's legal rights especially important to her.
Mistry Law has been appointed to execute the will of Mr. Omar Farid, a wealthy Muslim mill owner who has left three widows behind. But as Perveen examines the paperwork, she notices something strange: all three of the wives have signed over their full inheritance to a charity. What will they live on? Perveen is suspicious, especially since one of the widows has signed her form with an X—meaning she probably couldn't even read the document. The Farid widows live in full purdah—in strict seclusion, never leaving the women's quarters or speaking to any men. Are they being taken advantage of by an unscrupulous guardian? Perveen tries to investigate, and realizes her instincts were correct when tensions escalate to murder. Now it is her responsibility to figure out what really happened on Malabar Hill, and to ensure that no innocent women or children are in further danger.

Inspired in part by the woman who made history as India's first female attorney,
The Widows of Malabar Hill is a richly wrought story of multicultural 1920s Bombay as well as the debut of a sharp new sleuth.

Genre: Historical Mystery

Praise for this book

"Introducing an incisive, sympathetic heroine with a painful past while shedding light on a fascinating cloistered historical world, The Widows of Malabar Hill is not only immediately engaging—it has staying power." - Lyndsay Faye

"Sujata Massey is one of the most talented writers working today. In her hands, 1920s Bombay comes alive with the sounds, sights and smells of a place and time where women were still second class citizens. Perveen Mistry is an unforgettable heroine, fighting for justice in an enigmatic, beautiful and flawed world. With gorgeous prose, Massey weaves a captivating mystery. The Widows of Malabar Hill is an extraordinary novel." - Allison Leotta

"Perveen Mistry is an extraordinary heroine—one of the first female lawyers in India, she’s whip smart, strong-willed, and, most importantly, compassionate. Defying convention while draped in a sari, Perveen is sure to join the leads of great mystery fiction." - Susan Elia MacNeal

"There is a new sleuth on the literary map and her name is Perveen Mistry, practicing woman lawyer, feminist, survivor of abuse and solver of murder mysteries. In The Widows of Malabar Hill, Sujata Massey brings 1920s Bombay to life, a time when the British still ruled, single women were not served alcohol in restaurants and there was murder most foul. With an indomitable heroine and a solid cast of sidekicks, this is the start of a series mystery readers should not miss." - Amulya Malladi

"Perveen Mistry is a rarity: a female solicitor in a bastion of masculinity! An astonishing heroine—fearless, intelligent and determined—she makes a memorable debut in Sujata Massey’s The Widows of Malabar Hill. A gripping whodunnit, full of excitement and heart, the novel also delightfully evokes Bombay in the 1920s—and celebrates the Parsi community that continues to enrich their beloved city." - Bapsi Sidhwa

"A fascinating setting, an extraordinary new sleuth, and a story that enthralls you—The Widows of Malabar Hill has all three and more. Sujata Massey's new historical series is absolutely terrific, and you are just going to love Perveen Mistry, India's first female lawyer." - Charles Todd

"Perveen is strong, tenacious and smart, just the kind of advocate you'd want to have on your side. And as someone who was born and raised in the city, I love the way in which Massey recreates colonial Bombay, down to the architecture, social interactions,politics and gender dynamics. You can feel the breeze coming off the Arabian Sea and taste the pastries at Yazdani's bakery." - Radha Vatsal


Similar books by other authors


Used availability for Sujata Massey's The Widows of Malabar Hill


About Fantastic Fiction       Information for Authors