Eminent neuroscientist Dr V. Shekher is found dead in the laboratory. While police dismiss the mysterious letter written by the “murderer” as a prank, three of his students set out to solve a series of clues hidden across the city of Mumbai. Meanwhile, the pool of suspects continues to widen – estranged son, old rival, loyal housekeeper and resentful attendant: which of them possess the lethal combination of motive, opportunity and lack of morality commit the murder?
Targeted Age Group:: 18-60
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
Being a biologist who loves reading murder mysteries, this story popped into my head as it merged the best of both worlds. The scenes with experiments are loosely based on my own experiences, which I hope lends some authenticity to the setting!
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
The protagonists are three students who decide to solve clues set across the city of Mumbai to identify the who killed their eccentric professor, at the same time balancing their classes. As the story progresses, we meet more characters, each with a separate motive against the "victim". By the end of the novella, I hope that the reader feels that the personality of each character has been sufficiently developed to understand his/her perspective.
Undergraduate Biology Class, Bombay Scientific Research Institute (BSCI):
Dr Farzeen, the director, knew it was only minutes before the bell rang and she didn’t want the students to be late for their next class, which was Dr Shekhar’s. He was a Nobel laureate and she considered herself lucky that she had been able to bring him to BSCI, although she sometimes wondered whether it had been such a great idea, given the friction between Dr Shekhar and Dr Elizabeth.
Shaking herself free of these cobwebs of thoughts, she brought herself back into the present.
“Quickly remove your petri plates from the incubator and show me yesterday’s results.” she announced.
The class shuffled to get their plates and she moved around, examining each one’s work.
“Hmm, fair enough, Anusha, though could improve your technique, though. 6 out of 10, I would say.”
“Fine, but I can’t make out the colonies distinctly. I would give you 5 on 10, Michelle.”
“Yes yes, Maan, you’re stepping on people’s feet trying to show me your plate. Good enough, 8.5 on 10.” Maan looked as if Christmas had come early.
“What’s this? We seem to have some path-breaking work here by this young man.” Arjun tried not to look surprised at the praise. Everyone gathered around to take a look.
“Arjun Singh here has discovered a new species of bacteria – invisible ones.” she held up the petri plate which had absolutely no sign of any colony.
“I give you a 9, laddie.”
“9?” Arjun asked hopefully
“9 on 100.”
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