A Tooth to Nail Affair.

A Tooth to Nail Affair.

Title:     The Dental Mental Mystery

Author:               Dr.Durgesh Bailoor

Publisher:           Notionpress

ISBN      978-83-84049-65-2

Dr. Durgesh Bailoor promised us a racy thriller based on the forensic dentistry work he has been doing.

Based on his previous work I was expecting a book along the lines of his lecture on Oral Submucous fibrosis. Know the pattern…

Etiology, demographics, physiology, psychology, evidence conclusion kind of stuff. But this was different, though I did feel at times this was written to for the galleries and why not. he was not definitely writing a textbook.

The dental mental mysteries documents three cases where forensic dentistry evidence was used.

Child abuse where Snyder’s tests and bone healing is used to detect the possible crime. This story also introduces, us to the forensic expert Dr.Bailoor. His past muse, future  muse and muse-in-waiting,  the Doctors feisty mother, his work environment as an faculty of Oral medicine and radiology.

The second is about an insurance fraud that pans across continents. The trail moves along Kasargod, Mangalore, Udupi, Karwar, and Goa. a poor fisher-girl, working her way up from the local factory, to the middle east back to Mangalore, udupi, karwar and goa. Her befriending wealthy men, and defrauding them until law catches up on her. A dubious lawyer, a susceptible banker, a frustrated businessman, a voyeuristic photographer all thrown in between. the perpetrators and captured through the dental records of one of the perpetrators. Like the dog that did not bark, the records did not match. Dr. Bailoor uses the sex and age technique used in forensic dentistry, though he does not describe the test he does make a mention of it.

of course the doctor’s romantic life blooms, his police officer muse becomes his wife.

The third should have ideally been called “Gloria’s Glorious return” for the good doctor’s wife is posted to Bangalore on duty and his ex-girlfriend arrives from Australia, of course the wife returns too, who said only canine’s were territorial. Between the three of them, they track down a psychopath who was into ritualistic killing during the full moon. Here the forensic odontology technique of translating the bite marks is used.

There is a huge element of familiarity in the locations used in the books it makes is enjoyable, at the same time it takes away the sense of exotic. The essence of the hospital and working there are hands on however a little more research on the Canara Catholics would have added zing to the book, for there spaces and lacunae of inconsistency there.

The characters of Dr.Sujatha  the colleague, Mohammed Kharoushi the insurance investigator are quite real and like-able. However the Greek fencer of stolen goods Papnopolous, I think has been part of Agatha Christie’s and Uderzo’s narratives.

About the author:

Dr.Durgesh Bailoor, is a full time professor of OMDR. Currently based in the US of A Dr.Bailoor has been nomadic, he worked in Oman, Trinidad-Tobago. He is an Alumnus of University Of Bombay and worked in Bhopal, Ahmadabad, jaipur, Mangalore and Manipal. He has also authored texts on

  • Fundamentals of Oral Medicine and Radiology.
  • Management of medically compromised dental patients.


Lets Play House-House.

Lets Play House-House.

A home of our own.

Playing house house is something that we have all done. Beautiful play cookery and crockery in plastic, steel, or wood.

What is interesting about this book is the author takes through the world of Sunheri and her friends who never had a home of their own nor toys. Even these are broken odd end that the children collect in the place where they live. they designate it a role with their imagination and hopes. Creating joy a lovely world of make believe that is far removed from their reality which jolts them on and off.

Receiving broken toys and hand me down in exchange for work done while actual cash would have got them simple thrills of life tea and pakoras does tug the heart. What I liked about the book is the way is sensitizes without being morbid.

Pictures by Habib Ali are nice and clean. The detailing does not distract the reader. The book is available in 9 languages,  English, Hindi, Kannada, Tamil, Telgu, Bengali, Malayalam, Gujrathi, Marathi.

Author Meghaa Aggarwal. Debut’s as an author after working with Tulika since 2014. She is totally inspired by the magic of everyday life particularly through the eyes of a child.

Publisher Tulika.

ISBN    978-93-8666-735-0

Target age group 5+

To buy your copy https://www.tulikabooks.com/general-picture-books/a-home-of-our-own-english.html




.The Con man book by Surender Mohan Pathak is a thriller

Publishers       Westland publications.

ISBN               9789387894136

The book belongs to a series of crime journalist called Sunil Chakravarthy. Who is the crime reporter for a popular newspaper called Blast in a second tier city in UP. The town is up beat enough to have resto-bars, and youth clubs.

The story begins with Ramkant Malhotra the owner of Youth club bringing a pretty girl Kiara Sobti asking for help, she was conned by Aditya Khurana an NRI investment banker who had returned to town. But when Sunil goes to talk to the person he is found dead. Then the fabric begins to weave. Cops confiscate the mobile of the dead person and find 6 names on the frequent caller list, Kiara, Toral, Kavya, Devayani and Prakash Raj. The story then meanders like a Perry Mason with the first three women being conned while Devayani is the next prey.

Aditya Khurana it turns out is a conman who lived in a local middle class housing society and Prakash Raj is his partner. Aditya’s wife  Jyothi does a pick-a-boo. Then we have Nidhi who works at a jewellers shop who happens to be Prakash Raj’s extra marital affair. Prakash Raj himself being a high flying gambler. Though the character of Dimple Saxena as Nidhi’s roommate is interesting has all the signs of being conned, I would have made her the murderer. Another red herring appears in the form of Toral’s brother who works in the same hotel as the victim.

Lestrade of the series is the cop Prabhu Dayal of course there are rookie journalists, and cops a few henchmen of a loan shark all thrown into the cauldron.

the book gets weighed down voluminous dialogues. The original case being often forgotten. Westland could do well in insisting on editing the book. The book reads like the Hindi version was run through a google translator, at times I suspected toogle.

The book is best read in the original language Hindi.

About the author: Surendra Mohan Pathak is India’s highest selling crime writer. He has 298 novels to his credit. He has individual series for the protagonists he has created, like Sunil series for the crime journalist, Sudhir series dedicated to a private investigator Sudhir Kohli, Jeet series featuring a petty thief who takes to crime after a heartbreak. Finally the Vimal series where the protagonist Sardaar Surendra Singh is a gangster with a conscience.

Buy your copy here ” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>AMAZON

An evening with Sankarshan Thakur,

An evening with Sankarshan Thakur,

The international centre goa. has come up with Patrakar, a concept for interaction with journalists who are also published authors. This time round it Sankarshan Thakur, who the editor of The Telegraph

patrakar-sankarshan thakur.jpg
with Mr.Sankarshan Thakur.

The talk discussed the books by Mr.Thakur, particular his biographies on Nitesh Kumar and Laloo Prasad Yadav. The focus was of course his newest book, “The brothers Bihari” he called it the Bihari’s take on Bihar its politicians and politics. The two giants of Bihar, Laloo Yadav and Nitish Kumar. Chalk and cheese.

Laloo Yadav the muse of Thakur’s Subaltern Saheb and the making of Laloo Yadav, populist but tainted. Nitish Kumar the muse of Thakur’s Praise for single Man:The life and Times of Nitish Kumar of Bihar which by the author’s own confession was not truly his.

Mr.Thakur talked of the times when the men were young and complimented each other, gradually drifted and today they stand as foes. Taking turns to lead the waltz of Bihar’s destiny.

He was talking of the ground realities of liquor ban which has only added to creating a new career for the young of bihar, bootlegging. The liquor ban in Bihar has made it lucrative for youngsters to deliver liquor bottles clandestinely which brings them an income of 1500-3000Rs/day. People step over to Jhumri Telaiya for their drink.

As Mr.Thakur has spent a large spans of time at Kashmir, the conversation had to go there. He says the average Kashmiri is as courteous as ever, but fear has vanished from the valley, military vehicles no longer inspire awe or terror. Just resignation.

He was sharing the insight of a senior Kashmiri writer,(I forgotten his name) who felt what is happening to Kashmiri is it has got walled with only opening left. The opening is to the south, while the orientation of Kashmir is inclined towards central Asia.

Through the interaction, Mr.Thakur gave us a ring of sincerity and passion.  It was not just about the Saga of the despair of Bihar or Kashmir, it is the saga of what the dream of 1947 stroke of midnight has crumbled to. We seem to have lost the understanding that to disagree does not mean non- acceptance. To voice a contrary opinion is not being anti-national.

Thakur’s conversation was not funny, it was terrifying. Some insights that stayed with me

Kashmiriyat has left Kashmir… does that sound familiar Goankarpon has left Goa. We are all becoming “Indian”

We want Kashmir but not Kashmiri’s.

Kashmir is currently hurt that the mothers sing wedding songs at their sons funeral as there are no more weddings.

It is time for us to sit up and read the subtexts and understand what we allowed ourselves to become, very far from where we were to go.

The official conversation between Bihari Brothers Sankarshan Thakur and Dr.Pushkar  Launch event Patrakar.





The Female Sherlock Holmes: C. L. Pirkis’ Loveday Brooke

The Female Sherlock Holmes: C. L. Pirkis’ Loveday Brooke

Now this is interesting.

Interesting Literature

In this week’s Dispatches from The Secret Library, Dr Oliver Tearle applauds the 1890s short stories featuring an early female detective

The name Catherine Louisa Pirkis is relatively unknown now, but Pirkis left two legacies of interest. The first arose out of her animal charity work: with her husband, Pirkis was one of the founders of the National Canine Defence League in 1891. This is undoubtedly a worthwhile legacy in itself, but it’s the second legacy of C. L. Pirkis which concerns us here: her small but nonetheless notable contribution to detective fiction.

In 1893, C. L. Pirkis (1841-1910) wrote a series of short stories featuring a character who has been dubbed ‘the female Sherlock Holmes’, the lady detective Loveday Brooke. It was an opportune, if not out-and-out opportunistic, time to create a new fictional detective: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle had just killed off his popular sleuth Sherlock Holmes

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Drab debut.– Paradise Towers

Author:                Swetha Bachchan-Nanda

Publisher:            Harpar Collin India

ISBN                     978935303157

I have always been a HarvanshRai Bachchan fan.  I had quite enjoyed the soul curry by Amitabh Bachchan.  When Women’s Web invited me for the book release and I could not make I was rather disappointed.

Unfortunately I never read Ms.Bachchan-Nanda’s column. If I did I probably would have been more cautious.

Is like trying on the hat to emerge as a celebrity in her own right. It was modelling, well that seemed to fall flat, now the book and a clothes line. Hope she has better luck with the clothes line, than she has with cleaning the dirty linen of the residents of Paradise Towers.

Published by Harper Collins I assumed there would be a reasonable level of quality.  Well the language was decent I shall not deny it.

Like the synopsis said the book is about the residence of Paradise Towers an apartment building in central Mumbai.  In fairness Ms.Bachchan-Nanda tries to be inclusive both of the genre of story and the characters.

The story opens with the fastidious Mrs. Kapoor conversing with her mother. The Nosy Mrs.Mody who peeks into people’s life with a pair of binoculars. There is the gossipy Mrs.Kapoor her Muslim friend. A voyeuristic Mrs.Mody.  To this community come an NRI Punjabi family with teenage kids. There is a shy girl next door.  With this fabric like true Indian tail wanting to please all

The wannabe romance is taken care of by the Romance between Laila and her Hindu boyfriend. But all is set right by the two of them eloping and the parents accepting the couple in the true Hindi movie style.

Teen romance between the shy girl next door I have forgotten her name, and the NRI boy.

A thriller when the domestically abused Mrs. Rangnekar is revealed to be ferrying counterfeit notes.

A wannabe murder mystery in solving how did Mrs.Mody die mystery.

Paradise Towers does not allow the reader into the community because the author has not introduced us to her characters; I neither know Mrs. Kapoors first name nor her friends.

paradise towers
buy your copy here

However there is an interesting observation that Ms.Bachchan-Nanda makes “police in uniform is noticed, but a lift man in the same uniform remains unnoticed.”

The blurbs Mr.Karan Johar and Priyanka Khanna are rather misleading. Hope Ms.Bachchan-Nanda has more success in her next outing. I have to redeem myself.




An Indian Platter

Flavours of nationalism,

ISBN   9789387693661

Publisher Speaking Tiger.

The International Centre Goa has periodic book releases and conversations with the authors. I love attending these lectures, Ranjit Hosakotti and Nandita Haksar being few authors that I love reading. So when the invite came I jumped at it.

Though the conversation made feel that the much traveled Lady was trying to whip up a Thali

Nandita Haksar has a tag line to it, recipes for love, hate and friendship. The book is a collection of essays on her Pan Indian life and her life as the daughter of a diplomat patronized by the Nehruvian regime also speaks through.

The first essay on the meat eating kashmiri Brahmins, she refers to them as downstairs Kashmir where Kashmiriyat was diluted with the merging of Delhi culture into it. Some things that struck me in the essay was.

  • Kashmiri Pandits are meat eating but did not eat garlic and onion.
  • Mangoes were not indigenous to Kashmir, so there are no mango recipes.
  • Also when people dine to together some smells could cause problems.

Nandita talks of the gradual erosion of the elegant UP influenced Delhi culture by the invasive loud Punjabi culture. One interesting observation she makes is eating various cuisines may be adventurous and accommodative but it also  comes with a sense of rootlessness.t Nandita presents the meat eating Kashmiri Brahmins as a unique existence, of course Kashmiri Pandits are unique, Maharashtrian Brahmins particularly the Puneri Brahmins are quite often meat eating.

Some recipe’s to look up,

  • Kudaya-handa bhaji.
  • Karachi halwa
  • Bedmi
  • Nagoris

In page 131 she makes an observation that fat says, ‘screw you!”

In another place Nandita talks of her grandmother who told her grandfather, that he has married to her and not his mother, this changed his behaviour he began respecting her more. Interesting maybe some of us should try this on the men we married.

In page 158 she compares the Naga style of parenting with the Pan-Indian Urban parenting. Her observation is that Naga children are made to be useful contributory members of the society by the time they are 8-9 while Urban Indians do not allow their children to become adults for as long as they can.

In a conversation with her friend Ulka she observes that our inability to appreciate the other is more about our own limitations.

The book documents the changing culture of the subcontinent through the eyes of a much travelled person, her travel is both through geography and her who identity. Her journey at through feminism is to the human rights in Nagaland is very interesting.

There are few recipes in the book, though personally I think it was dinning that seem to dominate. In her final chapter she does question the random tourism growth in Goa the 5 star boom, causing a fish famine. She also comments on the vanishing frogs as their food has diminished with increased pesticide uses.

Over all an interesting book, serious issues have been put across through musings and observations, Nandita does not really  pronounce a judgement.

Buy your copy here.

On a personal note I should thank her for the Menu card on page 78 it kind of resolved a challenge for me.

A very interesting book for everyone who wants to know a little more about life, living and indian culture. Maybe I shall gift this book to all my NRI nieces and  nephew’s.

Though through the book one question kept bothering me, why equate Hinduism to Brahmanism, also why portray brahmanical culture as inhuman? Isn’t it  like saying all muslims are terrorists.