The Chupplejeep Mysteries






On a recent trip to Goa I visited the village where my father grew up. It had a certain charm and tranquility that I have never experienced before and provided inspiration for the Chupplejeep Mysteries. Here is the blurb for the first book in the series - Under the Coconut Tree:


In the early hours of November 11th the body of Sandeep Shah is discovered, nestled amongst a pile of coconut husks. Detective Arthur Chupplejeep and Police Officer Pankaj are called to investigate. From their experience this should be a straightforward case, but in a small village like Utol, everybody has something to hide.

Suspects soon start coming out of the woodwork. Bala, the pau wallah, has a history with the deceased that he has taken great care to conceal. Then there is Sandeep Shah’s lover and her jealous partner. Even the victim’s family seem to have a good enough motive to kill. To top it all, the telephone number of local moneylender, Sanjog Viraj, is found tucked under the victim’s bed. He looks like a key suspect, but everybody knows Sanjog is more like a Pomfret than a shark.

Detective Chupplejeep and Pankaj have their work cut out, sifting through village life, rumour and gossip to get to the truth. But along with solving the case, Detective Chupplejeep has his own problems. His girlfriend, Christabel, is growing impatient with his failure to put a ring on her finger and with his fortieth birthday fast approaching and a recent black mark against his name from the Inspector General of Police, Chupplejeep is having doubts about his professional competence. His dream of being Goa’s answer to Poirot is far from becoming a reality.

As the mystery of the body deepens, and the pressures at home begin to weigh on the Detective’s mind, will Chupplejeep be able to solve the case and return peace to the sleepy village of Utol once again?


The novel is a mix between Alexander McCall Smith's Ladies No. 1 Detective Agency and Aravind Adiga's coloquial insights of India (I can only hope that I will be as half as good as they are). 

The second book in the series is 'The Body in the Bath'


Draft blurb below. More details on my website www.marissadeluna.com







As the International Film Festival of India draws to a close and the celebrations of Christmas descend upon Goa, actress, Subrina Basi, is found dead in the bath of her hotel room.
At first sight, Subrina appears to have committed suicide, but closer inspection suggests foul play. Subrina’s best friend - the flamboyant artist, Advani looks like he has something to hide. And her boyfriend, Dattaprasad, has mysteriously disappeared. But it is not only Subrina’s close acquaintances who are suspected. As Chupplejeep and Pankaj delve into the troubled actress’s past, a dark secret is unearthed which casts a shadow of doubt on some of the local villagers.

This is no ordinary case. Chupplejeep is under pressure from Inspector General Gosht to solve this high-profile case fast, whilst Christabel is busy making marriage plans. Plans which Chupplejeep is not entirely comfortable with. Meanwhile, Pankaj has been given his first case to solve: a perilous blackmail case with a fast approaching deadline. Chupplejeep and Pankaj work against the clock, but will they solve the two cases in time?