Category Archives: Shadaab Amjad Khan

‘Cause You’re Trying Too Hard to Get a Reaction*

There are a number of ways that an author can ‘stir the pot,’ and add tension to a story. One of them is when a character deliberately says something provocative. It might be a veiled (or not-so-veiled) insult. Or it might be an accusation. Sometimes it’s just a remark intended to get a rise out of others. Whatever the reason for it, those comments can make a fictional atmosphere all the more charged. There are plenty of examples of this sort of character and remark in the genre. Here are just a few.

In Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot’s Christmas (AKA A Holiday For Murder and Murder For Christmas), wealthy patriarch Simeon Lee invites his relations to the family home, Gorston Hall, for Christmas. Lee holds the proverbial purse strings; so, although he’s an unpleasant person whom no-one likes, everyone accepts the invitation. When the family members gather, Lee says that he wants them all to join him in his private rooms, as he wants to talk to them. Then, he makes sure that they all hear a telephone call he makes regarding his will. As if that’s not enough, he insults all of them, and makes several remarks about cutting their allowances and shares of the family fortune. It’s a provocative series of comments designed to upset everyone, and it succeeds. Then, on Christmas Eve, Lee is murdered in his room. Hercule Poirot is staying in the area, and he works with the local police to find out who the killer is. I know, fans of After the Funeral, of Murder in Mesopotamia and of Hickory, Dickory Dock.

Alan Bradley’s Flavia de Luce is a pre-teenager, who lives in the English village of Bishop’s Lacey. She’s passionate about science, especially chemistry, and quite skilled at it, particularly for one as young as she is. She’s also intensely curious about nearly everything, so she’s a natural sleuth. Flavia lives in a large house, Buckshaw, with her father, Colonel de Luce, and wo sisters Ophelia ‘Feely’ and Daphne ‘Daffy.’ As you can imagine, Flavia and her sisters don’t always have what you’d call a harmonious relationship. In fact, they fight frequently. When they do, Flavia shows that she’s a match for her older sisters when it comes to making remarks and saying things that get a rise out of them. It doesn’t always make for a peaceful home, but it does add some wit and some realism to the stories.

In Shadaab Amjad Khan’s Murder in Bollywood, we are introduced to famous Bollywood director Nikhil Kapoor and his wife, famous actress Mallika Kappor. One night, they invite a few people to an ultra-exclusive party. During the party, Kapoor makes the very provocative statement that someone in the room has committed murder and will do so again. Everyone’s shocked, but Kapoor doesn’t name the person he has in mind. Not long afterwards, he is found dead in his studio, of what looks like a terrible accident. Later that night, Mallika also dies, of what looks like an accidental drug overdose. Mumbai Senior Inspector Hoshiyar Khan sees little pieces of evidence that aren’t consistent with accidents, and he gets clearance to investigate more thoroughly. When he finds out about the party and about Kapoor’s remarks, he now has a new pool of suspects, any one of whom might have wanted to commit murder.

Ruth Ware’s In a Dark, Dark Wood is the story of a hen weekend hosted by Florence ‘Flo’ Clay. Her friend, Clare Cavendish, is getting married, and Flo invites several people who’ve known the bride-to-be for a long time. The group of people gather at a summer home owned by Flo’s aunt, and the weekend begins. It’s not really celebratory, though. Clare hasn’t seen several of her guests for a long time, and there’s good reason for that. As the story goes on, we learn that there’s been an estrangement, and that there’s plenty of awkwardness. Then, one night, someone starts a game of ‘Never Have I Ever.’ Some of the remarks are provocative and specifically designed to get a reaction. And that adds greatly to the tension. As the weekend goes on, things get more and more tense and begin to spin out of control, and the end result is tragedy.

And then there’s Paul Levine’s Steve Solomon. He’s an attorney in the Coconut Grove area of Miami. His style, though, isn’t the staid, all-business sort of approach that some lawyers use. Instead, he’s quite comfortable using all sorts of what you might call courtroom antics to win his cases. Much to the chagrin of his more strait-laced legal (and life) partner, Victoria Lord, Solomon isn’t afraid to say very provocative things in a purposeful way. He says things to get a reaction from opposing counsel, from witnesses, and sometimes even from judges if he thinks that his comments will get him a win. For example, in Habeus Porpoise, Solomon and Lord find themselves on opposite sides of a case. Solomon’s defending an animal activist, Gerald Nash, in a case of murder; Lord is prosecuting. Here’s an exchange between them in the courtroom:
 

‘‘Your Honor, Mr. Solomon can’t be both a witness and defense counsel.’
‘Bogus argument, judge. We’ll stipulate to my client’s presence at the scene.’
‘Don’t call my arguments bogus,’ Victoria snapped.
‘Bogus, bogus. Hocus-pocus.’
 

(A bit later, when the judge discovers that Solomon and Lord are partners in life as well as in law…)
 

‘You two aren’t going to be playing footsie under the table, are you?’
‘Certainly not,’ Victoria said.
‘Not till after court,’ Steve said.’
 

Solomon’s provocative remarks sometimes get him into trouble. But they add to the tension (and sometimes, the wit), and they are surprisingly effective at times.

And that’s the thing about those sorts of remarks. They’re designed to get reactions from people, and they often do. But who knows where those reactions can lead…

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from So They Say’s A Beautiful Reaction.

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Filed under Agatha Christie, Alan Bradley, Paul Levine, Ruth Ware, Shadaab Amjad Khan

You Put My Life in Danger*

Most people don’t want to think that someone they know may be in danger. It’s a very unsettling feeling, if you think about it. That’s part of why it’s so tempting to dismiss that sort of threat, rather than take it seriously. ‘Maybe you’re just under stress,’ or ‘Perhaps you’re just misinterpreting something,’ or, less charitably, ‘It might be your imagination.’

Sometimes, of course, the threat of danger isn’t real, but a product of imagination, stress, or misinterpretation. But every once in a while, it’s quite real. And that possibility can add tension and plot points to a crime novel, especially if the threat turns out to be real…

For instance, in Agatha Christie’s Murder in Mesopotamia, we are introduced to Louise Leidner. She is accompanying her husband, noted archaeologist Eric Leidner, on a dig a few hours from Baghdad. And the trip isn’t easy for her. As she tells her husband, she’s been hearing odd noises, and seeing strange things out her window. She’s even begun to fear for her life. She isn’t really taken seriously, though. One of the people on the dig even refers to Louise’s fears as ‘fancies,’ and even those more kindly disposed aren’t convinced of the danger. One afternoon, Louise is tragically proved right about the danger she’s been in when she’s found murdered in her room. Hercule Poirot is in the area and is persuaded to look into the matter. He finds that this murder has much to do with the sort of person Louise was, and how that impacted others.

In Cornell Woolrich’s Night Has a Thousand Eyes, New York Homicide Bureau Detective Tom Shawn gets drawn into the lives of wealthy business executive Harlan Reid and his daughter, Jean. Through their housemaid, they’ve met a man named Jeremiah Tompkins, a man who, as he puts it, is cursed with being able to predict the future accurately. Since their meeting, Reid has begun meeting with Tompkins whenever he has a big decision to make. So far, all of what Tompkins has said has proven true, and now Reid believes in him utterly. Then comes a shocking prediction. Tompkins says that Reid will die on a certain night at midnight. Jean isn’t sure whether it’s going to happen or not, but her father has no doubt at all. That belief dramatically affects him, and by extension, his daughter. When Shawn meets the Reids, they’re already distraught. Shawn isn’t sure whether any of the danger is real. What’s more, he does know that there are plenty of scammers who pretend to predict things. But he feels for Jean, and he does want to protect Reid if he is, in fact, in danger. That possibility – that Reid and Tompkins are right – adds real tension to the novel.

Ellery Queen’s The Origin of Evil begins as Queen rents a home in the Hollywood Hills so that he can do some writing. His peace and quiet don’t last long, though. He gets a visit from nineteen-year-old Laurel Hill, who wants him to investigate the death of her father, Leander. He died of a heart attack, but Laurel thinks that it was deliberately induced. Before he died, he received a series of macabre ‘gifts’ that Laurel says caused his death.  What’s more, his business partner, Roger Priam, has also been receiving similar ‘gifts.’ Queen’s not inclined at first to get involved. But the puzzle does intrigue him. So, he starts to look into the matter. When he talks to Priam, though, he’s surprised to find that the man has no interest in whether anyone might be trying to kill him or might have killed his business partner. At first, he refuses to have anything to do with the investigation. Queen pushes the issue, and then there’s another attempt on Priam’s life. Now it’s clear that Laurel’s belief, and her father’s fear, were justified, and that someone has targeted both men.

Apostolos Doxiadis’ Three Little Pigs is the story of the Benvenuto ‘Ben’ Franco and his family, who emigrate from Italy to New York City at the turn of the 20th Century. Shortly after they arrive in New York, Franco gets a job at a shoe repair shop. Before long, he’s saved up enough money to open his own shoe sales and repair business, and the family prospers. Then, one night, Franco kills a man in a bar fight. To make matters worse, the victim turns out to be Luigi Lupo, son of notorious crime boss Tonio Lupo. Lupo curses the Franco family, saying that each of his sons will die at the age of forty-two, the same age Luigi was at his death. As the story goes on, we learn what happens to Franco’s three sons. And it’s interesting to see how each of them reacts to the threat of being killed.

And then there’s Shadaab Amjad Khan’s Murder in Bollywood. One night at a private party, famous Bollywood director Nikhil Kapoor makes the eerie pronouncement that one of the people at the party has killed and will kill again. Not long afterwards, Kapoor himself is killed one night while he is working at his film studio. A few hours later, his wife, noted actress Mallika Kapoor, also dies, apparently of a drug overdose. Both deaths look like terrible accidents on the surface. But Senior Inspector Hoshiyar Khan sees little pieces of evidence that suggest otherwise. At first, the other people at the party aren’t overly concerned about Kapoor’s comments. But then, there’s another death. That, plus the Kapoors’ deaths, makes everyone tragically aware that what Kappor said was true, and that they might be the next victims.

It’s very tempting to put the fear of danger aside. The alternative is a lot too unsettling for many people. But sometimes, those fears are real…

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from Steel Pulse’s Said You Was an Angel.

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Filed under Agatha Christie, Apostolos Doxiadis, Cornell Woolrich, Ellery Queen, Shadaab Amjad Khan

Life On a Film Set*

As this is posted, it’s 126 years since Thomas Edison built the world’s first film studio. Since that time, of course, films have become integral to many cultures. And the film industry is a lucrative one. Little wonder millions of people dream of being film stars or film executives.

But film sets and film studios are not always the happy, dream-world places they might seem to be. If you look at crime fiction, at least, you find that there’s plenty of mayhem on set. And that makes sense, when you consider all of the disparate (and sometimes clashing) personalities, all of the money involved, and so on.

For instance, Carter Dickson’s (AKA John Dickson Carr) And So to Murder features Pineham Studios, where author Monica Stanton has been hired to work with bestselling author William Cartwright on an adaptation of his latest novel for Albion Films. In the meantime, megastar Frances Fleur is working on her own new film for Albion, so the company has plenty at stake. It’s a dream job for Monica, but things soon go wrong. For one thing, she and Cartwright don’t get along. For another, soon after she starts work, there are two attempts on her life. Why would someone want to kill an up-and-coming novelist who’s just beginning a career as a scriptwriter? Cartwright gets Sir Henry Merrivale involved in the case, and he works out who’s behind it all.

In one of Ellery Queen’s ‘Hollywood’ novels, The Four of Hearts, Queen has been hired to work as a scriptwriter for Magna Studios. The project is to be a biopic of the lives of major stars Blythe Stuart and John Royle. The couple had a stormy, very public, love affair that ended years ago. They both married other people, and each had a child. At first, the studio isn’t sure that the stars will consent to work on the film, but to everyone’s surprise, they do. In fact, they re-kindle their romance, and decide to marry again. That wasn’t the story that Magna Studios had envisioned, but it’s decided to make the best of the situation and turn the wedding into a Hollywood affair. The couple marry on an airstrip, with great fanfare, and then take off for their honeymoon, with Stuart’s daughter and Royle’s son in tow. When the plan lands, the couple is found dead of what turns out to be poison. At first, it looks as though one of the adult children might be responsible, but Queen looks into the matter and finds that these murders have their roots in the past.

One of Stuart Kaminsky’s series features Los Angeles PI Toby Peters. Before he became a private investigator, Peters worked for a few years as a security guard for Warner Brothers Studio. So, he’s familiar with the way studios work, and he still has several contacts in the film industry. His cases frequently involve Hollywood stars, too. And the historical context (1940s) of the series means that Peters encounters some of Hollywood’s ‘Golden Age’ starts, such as Errol Flynn, Judy Garland, Humphrey Bogart, and Peter Lorre.

There’s also B.C. Stone’s Kay Francis novels, Murder at the Belmar and Midnight in Valhalla. These novels feature the famous star as the protagonist. So, readers go ‘behind the scenes’ of what happens on Hollywood sets and within the Hollywood community.

Even if you’re not a star, working on a film set can be dangerous. For example, Michael Connelly’s Lost Light is in part the story of the murder of Angella Barton, who is found murdered in the vestibule of her apartment building. At the time of the murder, LAPD detective Harry Bosch works a little on the case, but isn’t officially assigned to it. Four years later, it still haunts Bosch, but he hasn’t been able to follow up. By that time, though, he’s taken early retirement and started his own PI business. He decides to look into the matter again when he finds that the case wasn’t solved satisfactorily. Bosch learns that this murder is related to a US$2 million robbery from the set of a film that Barton’s employer was making. That link allows Bosch to solve the case.

And then there’s Shadaab Amjad Khan’s Murder in Bollywood. Khan himself has been a Bollywood script writer and actor, and is the son of noted Bollywood star, Amjad Khan. So, he’s familiar with the ins and outs of life in the Bollywood community. In this novel, Nikhil Kapoor, Bollywood’s top director, is found dead in his writing studio. Not many hours later, his wife, famous actress Mallika Kapoor, also dies, of what looks like a tragic drug overdose. There’s pressure to label both of these deaths as accidents, but Senior Inspector Hoshiyar Khan sees little pieces of evidence that suggest otherwise. With the support of his boss, Khan looks into the matter more deeply. As he does, readers get to know what life is like in a Bollywood studio, and how integrally related that community is into the culture of Mumbai and of India in general.

Studios and film sets have come a long way since Edison’s time. But they’re still fascinating places, and anything can happen on a film set. So, it’s little wonder we see them in crime fiction.

ps. The ‘photo is of a ‘green screen,’ of the sort that’s used in many films.

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is the title of a song by Yes.

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Filed under B.C. Stone, Carter Dickson, Ellery Queen, John Dickson Carr, Michael Connelly, Shadaab Amjad Khan, Stuart Kaminsky

Local Girl Makes Good, Weds Famous Man*

There’s a very interesting dynamic within what I’ll call ‘power couples.’ By that, I mean couples where both individuals have wealth, or ‘clout’ or some other claim to being ‘important.’ In real life, couples like Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt, or Juan and Eva Peron, are examples.

We see those couples in crime fiction, too, and they can add layers to a story. They’re influential, so they can impact a plot. And they have their own sort of dynamic, so such couples can be interesting as characters, too.

For example, in Agatha Christie’s Lord Edgware Dies, we meet famous American actress Jane Wilkinson. She’s well-known in her own right and is married to the wealthy and influential 4th Baron Edgware. She’s not happy, though, as she has fallen in love with the Duke of Merton. So, she asks Hercule Poirot to convince her husband to give her a divorce, so that she will be free to marry again. Poirot’s reluctant, but is eventually persuaded. When he and Captain Hastings visit Edgware, though, they are shocked to learn that he already withdrew his objection to a divorce, and, in fact, informed his wife of that. On the surface, it seems that the matter is settled. But that night, Edgware is stabbed. His wife is the most likely suspect, but she claims that she was at a dinner in another part of London at the time, and there are twelve people who are willing to swear that she was there. So, Poirot, Hastings, and Chief Inspector Japp have to look elsewhere for the criminal.

Emily Brightwell’s historical (Victorian-Era) Mrs. Jeffries Forges Ahead features Arlette Montrose Banfield and her husband, Lewis. They’re a rising ‘power couple,’ Lewis being from a wealthy ‘blueblood’ family, and Arlette being a well-known sculptor and artist’s model with a deep background in the arts. The Banfield family hosts an annual ball, and this year is no different. On the night of the big event, though, Arlette is poisoned. Inspector Gerald Witherspoon and his team investigate the murder, and they find there are several suspects. For one thing, there are several members of the Banfield family who feel that Lewis married ‘beneath him.’ The Montroses, for their part, resent the fact that Arlette married into what they see as a family of philistines with no culture whatsoever. There are other possibilities, too, and the investigation is not made easier by the Banfields’ status as influential people.

Anthony Bidulka’s Russell Quant is a Saskatoon-based PI who’s lucky enough to have several caring people in his world. One of them is his mentor, Anthony Gatt. Gatt is the owner of a very successful, upmarket menswear company. In fact, Gatt frequently tries to help Quant with matters sartorial. He knows everyone who is anyone in Saskatchewan and is quite influential in his own way. His partner, Jared Lowe, is a supermodel (later, he leaves that business). Together, the two are a ‘power couple’ who are well known internationally, and who have all sorts of ‘important’ friends.

Shadaab Amjad Khan’s Murder in Bollywood introduces readers to a Bollywood ‘power couple.’ Nikhil Kapoor is Bollywood’s top director. His wife is famous actress Mallika Kapoor. Together they reign supreme in Bollywood society. Then, one night, at a private party, Kapoor says that he knows one of the people at the party has killed and will kill again. Not long afterwards, Kapoor is found dead of what looks like a freak electrical accident. His wife, too, dies, of what looks like an unfortunate drug overdose. But Senior Inspector Hoshiyar Khan finds small pieces of evidence that suggest that the Kapoors were murdered. His boss, Meeta Kahsyap, supports Khan’s thinking, and he investigates the case more deeply. Beginning with those at the private party, he gets to know the people in the victims’ lives and tries to work out who would want both of them dead. He learns that there are past connections among these people, and that these murders have to do with the past.

Edney Silvestre’s Happiness is Easy is the story of Olavo Bettencourt and his wife, Mara. Bettencourt is an advertising executive who’s had a great deal of success. Mara is a former actress. They live in an exclusive area of São Paulo with their son, Olavinho. The business is much in demand, including by politicians who want to take advantage of Brazil’s increasing openness to political advertisement. On the surface, the Bettencourts are very much a ‘power couple’ who wield a great deal of influence. But they are also vulnerable. For one thing, Bettencourt is caught up in a web of dubious deals and ‘dirty money,’ and he’s not nearly as much in control as he thinks he is. Mara has a past that she would much rather not have made public. Everything comes to the surface when a group of kidnappers decide to take Olavinho, thinking his parents can afford to pay well for his safe return. But they get the wrong boy. Instead of Olavinho, they kidnap the son of the Bettencourt’s housekeeper. Now, the kidnappers have to decide what to do with the boy they have. And Bettencourt has to decide how much to tell the media and the police. The more he tells, the more vulnerable he is to criminal investigation.  As both sides work to get out of the situation, we learn just how vulnerable even ‘power couples’ can be.

And then there’s Donna Leon’s Commissario Guido Brunetti. He is married to Paola Falier, who is the daughter of a very influential ‘power couple.’ Conte Orazio Falier and his wife, Donatella, know everyone who is anyone in Venice. They’re on every A-list, and they have a great deal of social ‘clout.’ Their status sometimes proves to be very helpful to Brunetti, especially when he’s investigating crimes where the trail leads to high places.

There are other ‘power couples’ in crime fiction. They can be interesting in and of themselves, and they can add to a plot. Which ones have stayed with you?

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s High Flying, Adored.

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Filed under Agatha Christie, Anthony Bidulka, Donna Leon, Edney Silvestre, Emily Brightwell, Shadaab Amjad Khan

Blue-Jeaned and Jaded*

Most of us are too busy to get bored and jaded. And that’s probably a good thing. When you have to work for what you want, and you have goals, life seems to be more interesting. That might not be much comfort when work gets really hectic or you go through a financially difficult time. But having everything isn’t all it might seem to be on the surface.

Just a quick look at crime fiction is enough to show that being jaded can lead in all sorts of dangerous directions. And for the crime writer, jaded people can also form an interesting contrast to a determined protagonist. Little wonder we see this sort of character in a lot of crime stories.

There’s a very interesting jaded character in Agatha Christie’s Five Little Pigs (AKA Murder in Retrospect). Carla Lemarchant hires Hercule Poirot to find out who killed her father, famous painter Amyas Crale. Sixteen years earlier, Crale was poisoned, and his wife, Caroline, was arrested, tried, and convicted in the matter. She had motive, too, since Crale was rather openly having an affair with Elsa Greer, whose portrait he was painting. Caroline and her husband had several arguments, and the poison used in the murder was found in her possession. But Carla is convinced her mother was innocent. Poirot agrees to look into the case, and he interviews the five people who were present at the time of the murder.  He also gets written accounts of the murder from those people. That information leads him to the truth. The case also puts him into contact with Elsa Greer, who is now Lady Dittisham. In the years since the poisoning, she’s done quite well for herself, as the saying goes. She’s very wealthy and has gone through a few husbands. But, she’s bored with the money and possessions, and she’s jaded about life. Poirot’s visits give her a new interest, and readers see the impact of that interest on her.

Raymond Chandler’s The Big Sleep is the story of the wealthy, privileged Sternwood family. In it, General Guy Sternwood hires PI Philip Marlowe to solve a family problem. It seems that a book dealer called Arthur Geiger has set him an extortion letter that mentions Sternwood’s daughter, Carmen. Sternwood wants Marlowe to find Geiger and stop him. Marlowe takes the case, and has little trouble finding the man. But by the time he gets there, Geiger’s been shot. As it happens, Carmen is in the room, but she’s either too drugged or too dazed to be able to say what happened. Marlowe gets her out of the room as quickly as he can to keep her out of the case. Since Geiger’s been killed, that seems to be the end of the Sternwood case. But, when there’s another death, Marlowe finds himself drawn more and more into the family’s drama. As he works with the family, we see just how jaded they are about their money and power. It’s a very dysfunctional family to begin with, and that jadedness does nothing to make them more sympathetic.

The focus of Jussi Adler-Olsen’s The Absent One (AKA Disgrace) is a group of rich, privileged, jaded young people who attend a boarding school together in Denmark during the late 1980s. Their jadedness has arguably contributed their cruelty. In 1987, they are responsible for some brutal murders. Years later, Copenhagen homicide detective Carl Mørck and his team are given the file that contains these still-unsolved killings. Their department, ‘Department Q,’ is responsible for cold cases, and they soon begin work on this one. It’s not long before they learn an important reason that these murders were never successfully prosecuted. Those responsible are wealthy and well-connected. So, they’re carefully protected. The only one who’s not is Kimmie, who has ended up living on the streets. Mørck knows that if he’s going to solve this case, he’s going to have to find Kimmie and get her to help. But that won’t do any good if her former schoolmates find her first…

Claudia Piñeiro’s Thursday Night Widows takes place at the very end of the 1990s, mostly in the ultra-exclusive community of Cascade Heights Country Club, located about 30 miles from Buenos Aires. It’s a wealthy and very selective community, and the people who live there are sated with money and privilege. They’re jaded about it all, and they find things like custom-designed gardens that are changed every season, and cosmetic surgery for its own sake, to occupy them. Everything changes when Argentina’s economy falters. Now, the money isn’t as easily available as it was, and some of those who live in Cascade Heights begin to panic at this intrusion of the real world into their safe, if boring, ‘cocoon.’ That uncertainty – even fear – leads to real tragedy.

And then there’s Shadaab Amjad Khan’s Murder in Bollywood. Mumbai Senior Inspector Hoshiyar Khan is drawn into the ultra-wealthy, privileged lives of Bollywood’s crème de la crème when top director Nikhil Kapoor and his wife, famous actress Mallika Kappoor, both die in what look like separate, tragic accidents. The Powers That Be want these cases cleared up quickly, but Khan isn’t sure these deaths were accidents. He’s even less sure when he finds out that, shortly before they died, the Kapoors had hosted an exclusive party at which Nikhil Kapoor had made a startling accusation. He told the guests that he knew one of them had killed and would kill again. It seems clear to Khan that someone took his accusation as a personal threat. As he investigates, Khan gets to know the Kapoors’ son, Rohan. He’s been pampered and indulged all his life and has gotten jaded about it all. While the wealth isn’t really the cause of the murders, it certainly plays a role in Rohan’s personality.

And that’s the thing about having so much of everything that it gets boring. It can cause problems of its own that we might not see ‘from the outside.’ These are just a few examples from crime fiction. Your turn.

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from Billy Joel’s Los Angelenos.

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Filed under Agatha Christie, Claudia Piñeiro, Jussi Adler-Olsen, Raymond Chandler, Shadaab Amjad Khan