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A gorgeously written and tightly plotted mystery novel that brings the city of Delhi alive, in ways both enchanting and provocative.

$15.95 $11.96

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What people are saying…

“Someone is cutting off victims’ fingers in New Delhi and vampires and lycans are suspects in this ambitious mix of detection and the supernatural from Singh.”
Publishers Weekly

“Sajan Dayal, a Delhi detective, pursues a serial (though nonlethal) collector of human fingers. Dayal’s team encounters would-be vampires and werewolves, plus a woman named Razia who may or may not be centuries old.”
Publishers Weekly, Spring 2016 Announcements

“An intriguing mix of history, myth and the realities of contemporary New Delhi . . . Astonishing and satisfying.”
Reviewing the Evidence

“Superbly gothic . . . The novel is a compelling one and certain to be a great addition to courses on detective fiction and noir, especially given its focus on a city that has not necessarily or traditionally been attached to mystery and mayhem. Singh is giving places like Los Angeles and San Francisco a run for their money in this re-envisioning of the urban noir.”
Asian American Literature Fans

Necropolis is a ravishing beauty of prose that is as sumptuous as it is gripping . . . Imagine a cocktail of V.S. Naipaul, Agatha Christie, Elmore Leonard, and E.M. Forster, and you have the essence of this haunting and ferociously charming novel.”
—Ken Bruen, author of Green Hell

“I tore though Necropolis with great pleasure and a fair measure of unease. It’s a grisly, wonderfully written novel that interweaves disparate genres and styles into a whole that satisfies thoroughly. As fine a crime novel as I’ve read in the last year.”
—Scott Phillips, author of The Ice Harvest

“Avtar Singh’s Necropolis is an ode to ancient, medieval, and Old Delhi, a romantic ballad that cuts across time, if not place, and melds features of classic detective fiction with those of the hard-boiled and roman noir in a style that is exquisitely the author’s.”
—Sumana Mukherjee, Mint


Necropolis follows Sajan Dayal, a detective in pursuit of a serial (though nonlethal) collector of fingers. He encounters would-be vampires and werewolves, and a woman named Razia who may or may not be centuries old. Guided by Singh’s gorgeous and masterful writing, the novel peels back layers of a city in thrall to its past, hostage to its present, and bitterly divided as to its future. Delhi went from being an imperial capital to provincial backwater in a few centuries: the journey back to exploding commercial metropolis has been compressed into a few decades. Combining elements of crime, fantasy, and noir, Necropolis tackles the questions of origin, ownership, and class that such a revolution inevitably raises. The world of Delhi, the sweep of its history—its grandeur, grimness, and criminality—all of it comes alive in Necropolis.

Book Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Published: 6/7/16
  • IBSN: 9781617753800
  • e-IBSN: 9781617754586


AVTAR SINGH is the author of The Beauty of These Present Things. He has worked as a magazine editor in Mumbai and Delhi. He lives in Delhi with his wife, son, and singing dog. Necropolis is his latest novel.

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