Book Review — A Perfect Murder and Other Stories — S.R.Nair (Detective, Mystery & Thriller)

Jon & Caroline | Ink-Stained Hearts

If you want to explore the culture differences between America and India, the position of women and simply human nature, check out A Perfect Murder …
S.R. Nair - A Perfect Murder and Other StoriesPhoto byS.R. Nair


A Perfect Murder is a collection of 14 short stories about the culture differences between India and America, especially the position of women in India but most of all, an insight into the universal good and bad in human nature.

The Stories

A man feels he is far too good to be his father’s shop assistant. When he spots what appears to be a desperate woman in the shop, the appeal of sex and money is one he cannot resist in ‘A Perfect Murder’. ‘Salma’s Fate’ shows us the Indian society at its best and worst. If Salma had not been such a strong young woman… 

‘iPad’ shows us the power of love and ‘Koya’s Story’ is about a young man who wants to help his poor mother but little does he know how this will work out. ‘Seema’ shows us the practice of arranged marriages in India and the disdain for those marrying outside their caste. Both ‘The Grandson’ and ‘The Stolen Child’ show us the different attitudes towards male and female in the Indian society.

When Gagan finds out his bride of two months is missing, first he is suspected of having done something to her and then the search begins .. Adi’s plan was to seduce a woman but it seems the ‘Seduction’ works both ways. ‘Total Eclipse’ is a story about a man who seems to have it all. ‘Visa for America’ is a tale of human kindness. ‘The Soothsayer’ shows us that fate catches up with us regardless of our efforts to change the path of life. In ‘The Lost Son’ a long friendship is torn apart by money and something else, that is forbidden in the state of India. ‘Zubair’ shows us a woman assimilating into US society whereas her husband is struggling and desperately wants to cling on to his Indian culture.

Our Thoughts

In his stories, the author shows us some of the differences between the Indian and American cultures with topics such as murder, rape and the Shariah versus Western law. As much as I liked reading about this, the stories were too descriptive and the narration too explicit. At times it felt less a novel and more a journal. In my opinion, the author tried too hard to capture all the details in his tales. I can understand the importance of having the whole picture but the pleasure of reading would have benefitted from having more things implied rather than explicitly described.

Having said that, the author shows us the difference in culture and how for women Indian society can be very hard and trying. Most of all, the author took us with him on the global topic of human nature — there are loveable and strong characters but also greedy and deceitful ones. Such people are in every society, perhaps even some things recognisable in ourselves, You can see where the different protagonists come from and what they want to achieve. The ‘iPad’ story is very touching and I loved the forgiving character in another story — I will not tell you more for fear of spoiling it!

About the Author
S.R.NairPhoto byGoodreads

S. R. (Shrikumar) Nair has lived and worked in India, Hong Kong, Macau and USA. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Advanced Accounting from the University of Bombay and a Masters degree in Social Sciences from the University of East Asia, Macau. Currently, he resides in California with his wife, their two children, and Veer their pet dog.

S.R. Nair on Goodreads.

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