Saturday, October 21, 2023

Five historical mysteries featuring unforgettable & unconventional women

Ritu Mukerji was born in Kolkata, India, and raised in the San Francisco Bay area. From a young age, she has been an avid reader of mysteries, from Golden Age crime fiction to police procedurals and the novels of PD James and Ruth Rendell. She received a BA in history from Columbia University and a medical degree from Sidney Kimmel Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. She completed residency training at the University of California, Davis and has been a practicing internist for fifteen years. She lives in Marin County, California, with her husband and three children.

At CrimeReads Mukerji tagged five historical mysteries that "feature an unforgettable heroine who challenges societal expectations with verve. And each showcases a setting, be it a physical place or historical period, that is so evocative it is like a character itself." One title on the list:
Murder at the Porte de Versailles, Cara Black

It might be a stretch to categorize 1990s Paris as “historical”, but I couldn’t omit the Aimee Leduc mysteries from this list. Aimee is independent and resourceful, a computer hacker turned private investigator. I love the wonderful details of the character, from her chipped red manicure to her vintage couture clothing. The reader is immersed into the distinctive neighborhoods of Paris and gets a deeper sense of the city through its smaller marginalized communities. This novel, the 20th in the series, is set in the aftermath of 9/11 amidst heightened tensions in Paris. When a bombing occurs and Aimee’s close friend is a suspect, she must act. The stories are full of political intrigue and incomparable supporting characters, as well as haunting echoes of Aimee’s past.
Read about another entry on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue