Sunday Times Top Crime Novels of 2023
The Times’ Best Summer Audiobook
‘Ajay Chowdhury’s crime novels, set in the East End of London, keep getting better. Kamil Rahman arrived from India in disgrace several years ago and began working shifts at a tandoori restaurant in Brick Lane. He has returned to the job he loves in Chowdhury’s enthralling new novel, The Detective. In his very first week at the Met, Rahman is thrown in at the deep end, investigating the murder of the boss of a controversial tech company in Shoreditch. Forensic work on the building site where the body was found exposes another murder scene that’s a century old, a time when newly arrived Jewish immigrants lived in the area. Chowdhury’s dazzlingly clever plot brings together the East End’s history and its present incarnation as home to some of the country’s most innovative technology.’
Joan Smith. The Sunday Times
‘An entertaining story that ranges across love, murder and an intriguing family tree’ The Sun
‘A rip roaring crime novel’ The New Zealand Listener
‘The Detective continues Chowdhury’s tale of transplanted Indian-cop-turned-chef Kamil Rahman as he joins the Metropolitan Police Force. But Rahman’s exhilaration at returning to uniform is short-lived. Facing prejudice, incompetence, and a case that ties his team into knots, Rahman soon finds himself sidelined. Chowdhury brings his own expertise in modern tech to the plot, combining it with hot button history, and a biting wit. The series goes from strength to strength.’ Vaseem Khan
Sunday Crime Book of the Month April 2023
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 6 June 2023
If you’re looking for a moreish detective series to add to your reading menu, then the tantalising books starring disgraced Kolkata detective Kamil Rahman could provide a tasty treat. The insidious threat of rampant technology adds extra spice in this excellent third helping, where Rahman is now a fresh new Detective Constable with the Met Police in London, after stints as a waiter then cook at an Indian restaurant in Brick Lane.
Ajay Chowdhury, who was himself a tech entrepreneur (the founder or CEO of some hugely successful startups, eg Shazam) before becoming a crime writer, spins an engrossing tale in The Detective where Rahman is part of a team investigating the murder of a tech CEO whose company was on the verge of a secret $4 billion sale. But why would a company that creates algorithms for a dating site be so valuable? As cloak and dagger events hamper the investigation, and Kamil’s friend-or-more Anjoli digs into the discovery of three century-old skeletons, another murder turns up the heat.
The Detective is rip-roaring crime novel that nicely balances humour and Kamil’s personal misadventures with serious issues including the tension between privacy and security, and prejudices modern and ancient. A flavourful and filling slice of crime