The Last Kashmiri Rose by Barbara Cleverly
Murder and Mystery in the Final Days of the Raj (Joe Sandilands Murder Mysteries)

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Conjuring up the last golden days of the Raj and the turbulent early ones of Indian rule, this suspenseful and atmospheric first novel—the winner of the Crime Writer Association’s Debut Dagger competition—draws the governor of Bengal, local police authorities, and visiting Scotland Yard detective Joe Sandilands into an increasingly baffling and bizarre case of serial murder. It is 1922, in Panikhat. In March of each of the past five years the wife of an officer in the Bengal Greys has met with a violent and terrifying death. One died in a fire, another by a cobra bite, the third from a fall, and the fourth victim drowned. Of course, they all might have been accidents, while the death of Captain Somersham’s pretty young wife, who was found with her wrists cut, could be ruled a suicide. One link between the five cases, however, points to foul, disturbing play. On the anniversary of the deaths small red roses mysteriously appear on the women’s graves. With only a few days to go before the end of March and with faith in the new Western science of psychological profiling, Joe Sandilands finds himself running a race against time and a serial killer who alone knows the recipient of the next Kashmiri rose. “The atmosphere of the dying days of the Raj is colorfully captured.”—Sunday Telegraph “Introduces an intelligent author and an interesting investigator.”—Morning Star

About Barbara Cleverly

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Barbara Cleverly was born in the north of England and is a graduate of Durham University. A former teacher, she has spent her working life in Cambridgeshire and Suffolk; she now lives in Cambridge. She has one son and five step-children. Her Joe Sandilands series of books set against the background of the Indian Empire was inspired by the contents of a battered old tin trunk that she found in her attic. Out of it spilled two centuries of memories of a family - especially a great uncle who spent a lot of time in India - whose exploits and achievements marched in time with the flowering of the British Empire. To find out more about the series, visit
Published September 1, 2011 by C & R Crime. 143 pages
Genres: History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Crime, Sports & Outdoors, Travel. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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After spending six months of 1922 in Calcutta advising the Bengal police, Commander Joe Sandiland of the Yard is anticipating a welcome return home when Acting Governor Sir George Jardine requests his help at the outpost in Panikhat.

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Publishers Weekly

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In an impressive debut, British author Cleverly weaves an engrossing tale of serial murder and the impending decline of the British Empire into a well-written fair-play mystery set in 1920s India.

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