Friday 24 March 2017

Review ~ Trouble in Nuala by Harriet Steel

Stane Street Press

What's it all about about ...

When Inspector Shanti de Silva moves with his English wife Jane to his new post in the sleepy hill town of Nuala he anticipates a more restful life than police work in the big city entails. However an arrogant plantation owner with a lonely wife, a crusading lawyer, and a death in suspicious circumstances present him with a riddle that he will need all his experience to solve. 
Set on the exotic island of Ceylon in the 1930s, Trouble in Nuala is an entertaining and relaxing mystery spiced with humour and a colourful cast of characters.

What did I think about it...

Trouble in Nuala introduces us to the delightful, Inspector Shanti de Silva, who, with his English wife Jane, has moved to a new posting in the sleepy hill town of Nuala. Escaping the city, Shanti hopes that his life will take on a more tranquil outlook, that is, until trouble rears its ugly head in Nuala. A suspicious death, on one of the tea plantations, opens up a whole series of complicated questions which mean that Inspector de Silva's ingenuity, and that of his police team, is put to the test.

The author’s descriptive talent comes alive and from the opening pages I was immediately transported back to 1930s Ceylon, which is now modern day Sri Lanka, and taken to a place of great natural beauty, of rich red earth and the jostling of banana and rubber trees and of the scented aroma of jasmine and frangipani blossom. The story gives a lovely portrait of what life could have been like for those colonials who made it their home, and also of the problems faced when living in a small community where everyone's business becomes a matter of great interest

I really enjoyed getting to know Inspector de Silva. I appreciated his wry sense of humour and his steadfast refusal to be beaten by a myriad of complex situations. His interaction with his colleagues, particularity the hapless Constable Nadar, and the slightly more prosaic Sergeant Prasanna made me smile as they are so reminiscent of a bygone time.

Trouble in Nuala is the first of a proposed series of detective books featuring Inspector de Silva and I, personally, can't wait for the next book, Double Trouble, which, I think, is coming sometime in 2017.

Best Read With...Elephant ginger beer and a spicy bowl of Dhal...

About the Author

Harriet Steel is the author of several historical novels including Becoming Lola and Salvation. Her work has appeared in national newspapers and magazines. She is passionate about history and blogs about it at

Follow on Twitter @harrietsteel1

Harriet Steel

My thanks to the author for allowing me the opportunity to read and review Trouble in Nuala



  1. Many thanks to Jo and Jaffa for the lovely review. I'm so glad that Trouble in Nuala received the purr of approval! Best wishes, Harriet

    1. Your'e welcome, Harriet. Jaffa and I enjoyed making the acquaintance of Inspector De Silva :)


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