Today I am reviewing The Blue Bar by Damyanti Biswas. This is released on the 1st of January 2023, published by Thomas and Mercer.
On the dark streets of Mumbai, the paths of a missing dancer, a serial killer, and an inspector with a haunted past converge in an evocative thriller about lost love and murderous obsession.
After years of dancing in Mumbai’s bars, Tara Mondal was desperate for a new start. So when a client offered her a life-changing payout to indulge a harmless, if odd, fantasy, she accepted. The setup was simple: wear a blue-sequined saree, enter a crowded railway station, and escape from view in less than three minutes. It was the last time anyone saw Tara.
Thirteen years later, Tara’s lover, Inspector Arnav Singh Rajput, is still grappling with her disappearance as he faces a horrifying new crisis: on the city’s outskirts, women’s dismembered bodies are being unearthed from shallow graves. Very little links the murders, except a scattering of blue sequins and a decade’s worth of missing persons reports that correspond with major festivals.
Past and present blur as Arnav realizes he’s on the trail of a serial killer and that someone wants his investigation buried at any cost. Could the key to finding Tara and solving these murders be hidden in one of his cold cases? Or will the next body they recover be hers?
”Not all cold cases are dead ends…”
Having read and enjoyed Biswas first novel, You Beneath Your Skin, I was very much looking forward to reading The Blue Bar, a gritty crime thriller showcasing the dark and seedier side of Mumbai.
I was immediately drawn in to this very atmospheric and suspenseful tale with a storyline that covers many themes and narrated via multiple points of view. The pace is fast, it all plays out well and it’s cast of characters are well fleshed out and believable.
An extremely well researched piece of work, that has been perfectly written and executed, The Blue Bar is a really great start to this series and I look forward to reading more.
Thank you to Damyanti Biswas, Thomas and Mercer and NetGalley for allowing me to read an advance copy of The Blue Bar, which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.
This review will be added to, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Amazon Australia & Amazon US. I will also add to NetGalley, Apple Books, Kobo, Google Play and Barnes & Noble and Bookbub if available. As I am from Australia, I am unable to add to Amazon UK, but will post to Waterstones & Foyles if also available.
LET’S GET TO KNOW DAMYANTI BISWAS
Damyanti Biswas lives in Singapore, and supports Delhi’s underprivileged women and children, volunteering with organisations who work for this cause. Her short stories have been published in magazines in the US, UK, and Asia, and she helps edit The Forge literary magazine. You can find her on her blog damyantiwrites.com
She sends out monthly newsletters with book recommendations and writing resources, and her work is represented by Lucienne Diver from the Knight Agency.