1 - What's your latest?
Tarquin Hall: THE CASE OF THE MAN WHO DIED LAUGHING. It's the second of my Vish Puri Most Private Investigator novels. It's set in Delhi, India and the murder takes place at an early morning Laughing Club (yes you guessed it a club where people get together and laugh). A scientist attending the session is killed by an apparition of the Hindu goddess, Kali. This is not the sort of thing you would generally expect to happen, even in India. Consequently, the public believe a miracle has happened. But Punjabi sleuth Vish Puri, lover of all things spicy, is not so easily fooled.
2 - Assuming I haven't read it, why should I?
Tarquin Hall: Because it's got everything -- suspense, colourful characters and plenty of mouth-watering references to Indian food. There's humour as well -- Puri's interfering Mummy-ji works her own case on the side. Plus the book givev a lot of insight into modern India. With a population of 1.2 billion and an economy that could soon be as large as America's, it's a good idea to know more about the place.
3 - What can you tell us about your main character that you hadn't realized until you answered the question?
Tarquin Hall: Hmmm. Hard one. I guess I'd say that if he carries on eating all those paranthas and chicken frankies then he's going to drop dead from a heart attack and then what am I going to do?
4 - What's your favorite scene and why?
Tarquin Hall: I like the very end. It's touching. My editor shed a tear when she read it and that made me happy.
5 - What's next?
Tarquin Hall: I think I'm going to call it THE CASE OF THE DEADLY BUTTER CHICKEN. It's going to be about corruption in cricket and the murder of a Pakistani player's father. But as with THE CASE OF THE MAN WHO DIED LAUGHING and THE CASE OF THE MISSING SERVANT (A New York Times notable crime book), I'll weave in a couple of sub-plots. Vish Puri's bread and butter work is matrimonial investigations (i.e. looking into the backgrounds of prospective brides and grooms entering into arranged marriages) which is a good way of highlighting the changes taking places in Indian society.