THE WAITER (order now)
SUNDAY TIMES CRIME BOOK OF THE MONTH
TIMES/SUNDAY TIMES BEST CRIME BOOKS OF 2021
Kamil Rahman, disgraced detective, turned waiter, is about to find himself embroiled in a case that might just change his life … for better or for worse
‘A hugely entertaining first novel for lovers of traditional crime fiction, taking us from Kolkata to Brick Lane’ Ann Cleeves, author of the Vera and Shetland series
‘From the mean streets of Kolkata to the kitchens of Brick Lane and the mansions of Bishops Avenue, this is a rip-roaring mystery that’s engrossing from start to finish. In Kamil Rahman, he’s created a quixotic and all too human protagonist who is a refreshing and welcome addition to the world of detective fiction. One of my favourite reads of the year.’ Abir Mukherjee, author of the Sam Wyndham series
‘The Waiter is a heady mix of murder, intrigue and all things Indian. Weaving together a dual narrative with aplomb, Ajay Chowdhury’s neatly-drawn detective Kamil Rahman relives his failure to solve the murder of a Bollywood A-lister in Kolkata whilst trying to solve the killing of an Indian industrialist in London. Could the two murders be connected? An accomplished crime debut that offers something a little different.’ Vaseem Khan, author of the Malabar House series and the Baby Ganesh Agency series
‘The Waiter is beautifully written and gloriously transporting. I really loved the glimpse into life as a Kolkata homicide detective and the vibrant and mouth-watering depiction of the Bengali restaurant trade on London’s Brick Lane. Ajay Chowdhury is a refreshingly different voice in the crime genre and I can’t wait to read more.’ Emily Koch, author of If I Die Before I Wake
‘An entertaining and enthralling debut with an original new lead detective. I loved the authentic feel of Brick Lane and Kolkata.’ G. R. Halliday, author of the Monica Kennedy series
‘A super-strong debut’ The Bookseller
‘Kamil Rahman is down on his luck. He’s lost his job, smashed his dreams and fled Kolkata for London. Ajay Chowdhury deftly weaves a tale of two murders, two countries, two times – past and present – and binds them together into a single web of intrigue, money, corruption and death. He paints a bleak picture but brings it to life with a keen eye for texture, detail and an enticing love of music and good food. No book as ever made me as hungry as this enjoyable, fast-paced thriller. ‘ Georgia Kaufmann, author of The Dressmaker of Paris
‘In a swiftly-moving energetic narrative that takes you from the decaying grandeur of Kolkata and the bustle of London’s Brick Lane and the outward calm of the stately homes near Hampstead Heath, Ajay Chowdhury weaves a remarkable tale about the unlikely turns the life of police officer Kamil Rehman has taken, as he confronts his past, surrounded by the smells of spices and constant lurking danger.’ Salil Tripathi, author of The Colonel Who Would Not Repent
Full of wit and wisdom, The Waiter is sure to set your taste-buds tingling and will help you brush up on your detective skills too. Kamil Rahman, disgraced detective, turned waiter, is about to find himself embroiled in a case that might just change his life … for better or for worse
Disgraced detective Kamil Rahman moves from Kolkata to London to start afresh as a waiter in an Indian restaurant. But the day he caters a birthday party for his boss’s friend on Millionaire’s Row, his simple new life becomes rather complicated. The event is a success, the food is delicious, but later that evening the host, Rakesh, is found dead in his swimming pool.
Suspicion falls on Rakesh’s new wife, Neha, and Kamil is called to investigate for the family, with the help of his boss’s daughter Anjoli. Kamil and Anjoli prove a capable team – but as the investigation progresses, Kamil struggles to keep memories of the case that destroyed his career in Kolkata at bay. . . and his past will soon catch up with him in some rather unexpected ways.