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On Books, Writing, Editing, and More

Murder in the Jungle by Sutapa Basu

Number of pages– 215 Price – INR 395 Author – Sutapa Basu Publisher – Perky Parrot, an imprint of Niyogi Books. Genre– Young Adult Fiction / Mystery

Blurb from the inner page

Evil is stalking the jungle. As tiger after tiger vanishes from Nagarhole wildlife reserve, despite sophisticated digital and human eyes on the ground, DFO Vinay Mishra and his team of forest officials are left puzzled. Also, what is the role of a nawab, who is obsessed with history, in the midst of this mystery?
‘Murder in the Jungle’ is the first book by Sutapa Basu that I’m reading. Parents who have grown up on Enid Blyton’s Five -find outers will want their children to read about the Five Mystery Hounders who hound mysteries to ground. ‘Murder in the Jungle’ by Sutapa Basu has 22 chapters, an acknowledgements section, a note from the author, and cute pugmarks across the contents page.
“Smoky grey clouds sailed across a huge golden moon hanging in an inky sky,” is the first line of the book. I found the writing beautiful and descriptive. “Dawn lightened the sky when the hyena stuck out a head. Yellow eyes blinked and his short ears flared.”
Book Cover
Book Cover
Illustration from the book
Kabir, Tara, Vicky, and Ishi are students (and cousins) at a boarding school in the Nilgiris. The children are aged between 11 and 17. There’s also a white hamster called Ripper in the story. Tara is writing a book on history mysteries. Kabir was selected as ‘Hacker of the Year’ by the IT club of his school. He is in the middle of writing an essay about artificial intelligence systems for the next term. The Indian Forest Service has begun using AI tracking programs in their work. They perform digital analysis from satellite images. The Nagarhole tiger reserve has nearly 400 camera traps.
Anita and Jayant Mishra are anthropologists who are in the US participating in a guest lectureship program at the University of California. Vinay and Seema Mishra are parents of Kabir and Ishi, with Vinay being the Divisional Forest Officer. The story is set in Nagarhole park in Karnataka. The five mystery hounders try to solve the Murder in the Jungle, combining their online and on-ground detective skills.
It was heartening to see the children eat food that is commonly available in India, rather than treacle pudding and jam tarts, which always made me drool in the Enid Blyton books.  It was also inspiring to see such young children aspiring to be writers and ethical hackers. It will undoubtedly inspire young minds who read this book. Readers will also learn about ecology and maintaining a decorum while visiting forests and jungles in India.

About the author

Sutapa Basu is an award-winning author, educationist, and writing coach. She was vice-principal and HOD in several schools, as well as MD and Director at Oxford University Press and Encyclopaedia Britannica . She coaches children and aspiring authors at Sutapa’s Studio. She has written several books like The Legend of Genghis Khan; Princesses, Monsters and Magical Creatures; The cursed inheritance, etc. Book Buy Link This review is powered by the Blogchatter Book Review Program

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Aishwariya Laxmi

I’m Aishwariya. I’m passionate about writing, reading, marketing communications, books, blogging, poetry and editing. I’ve donned several hats, such as freelance journalist, copywriter, blogger and editor.


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