Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra (Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation #1)” as Want to Read:
The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra (Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra

(Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation #1)

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  6,903 ratings  ·  1,099 reviews
On the day he retires, Inspector Ashwin Chopra inherits two unexpected mysteries.

The first is the case of a drowned boy, whose suspicious death no one seems to want solved. And the second is a baby elephant. As his search for clues takes him across the teeming city of Mumbai, from its grand high rises to its sprawling slums and deep into its murky underworld, Chopra begins
Paperback, 297 pages
Published September 15th 2015 by Redhook (first published August 13th 2015)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Deb How could he have forgotten that his uncle Bansi had adored Cadbury's Dairy Milk?…moreHow could he have forgotten that his uncle Bansi had adored Cadbury's Dairy Milk?(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.75  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,903 ratings  ·  1,099 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra (Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation #1)
On the day that he was due to retire, Inspector Ashwin Chopra discovered that he had inherited an elephant...

I enjoyed this book! It's just great fun, interesting, entertaining, heartwarming and quite an unexpected nice read, so...recommended! And who can think of a cute baby elephant playing a key role in the story? The lead character is Ashwin Chopra, a man of integrity with a rigid sense of honesty and fairplay. A man passionate about the social ills that plague his country. Married with Popp
Vishnu Chevli
[Edited - Added Author Interview Link]

Four months back while window-shopping I found an interesting cover of "The Strange Disappearance of a Bollywood Star". It is the latest book by Vaseem Khan in series of A Baby Ganesh Agency. I instantly liked the book and checked more about the author and his work. My efforts led two more books in the same series released earlier. We also got the chance to interview Vaseem on our blog. I got my hands on the first part of the series "The Unexpected Inheritan
Oct 10, 2017 rated it liked it
"The next morning Inspector Chopra awoke for the first time in thirty-four years without the knowledge that he was a police officer.

For a while he lay in bed, staring up at the ceiling. He felt his body urging him to get up, shower, and put on his uniform. Inertia; wasn't that what people called it? After all, when one has been running, it takes a while for the body to stop even though the finishing line has been crossed. When he arrived at the breakfast table, dressed in a plain white shirt and
Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂
2.5 ✭

Nope, didn't really care for this tale.

The feeling that this wasn't written by a native born Indian (& I was right)

The writing was very heavy handed, clumsy and amateurish. Too much telling, not showing - & done repetitively.

...This last was directed at her son-in-law, against whom she had always held a grudge for not being Jagirdar Mohan Vishwanath Deshmukkk, landowner and erstwhile suitor of her daughter.

We know!!! Halfway through the book & this has already been mentioned several ti
Mumbai India

On the day he retires, Inspector Ashwin Chopra inherits two unexpected mysteries.

The first is the case of a drowned boy, whose suspicious death no one seems to want solved. And the second is a baby elephant.

As his search for clues takes him across the teeming city of Mumbai, from its grand high rises to its sprawling slums and deep into its murky underworld, Chopra begins to suspect that there may be a great deal more to both his last case and his new ward than he thought.

And h
Martin Belcher
Aug 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2015
There is something uniquely fascinating about India and it's culture, I completely love everything about it, the food, the people the wonderfully intoxicating mix of sounds, warmth, monsoons etc.
I heard about this book from seeing an interview with the author on Breakfast TV and felt hooked and wanted to read it. To be honest crime fiction is not a love of mine and I tend to steer clear of it but with the mix of Indian culture and an elephant I wanted to give it a try.
I absolutely loved it! The
John Naylor
May 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I received this book for free via Goodreads First Reads.

I had no idea what to expect from this book except for it to contain an elephant. What I found was a tale I want to describe as 'sweet' but as it contains deaths and criminal activity I need a better word which is not currently available to me. It has a very interesting main character with a very supportive and intriguing wife who has her own subplot.

The book is primary a detective novel but not like one I have ever read before. Various sup
Jan 19, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book is very similar to Alexander McCall Smith's series, The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency. There are numerous parallels between the two books, and the main characters are very similar. However, while the McCall Smith books are engaging, well written and good page-turners; Khan's book falls short on a number of levels.

The book starts off promisingly, and the notion of a baby elephant being sent to live in downtown Mumbai is an interesting start. However the book kind of doesn't really go an
Apr 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime, england, fiction
Unique book which offers some interesting information about modern India. Besides also having an interesting detective plot. Fun to read, well written. I have read it in English. I must admit that some words are difficult because as a dutch woman i dont have any knowledge about India or any of the Indian words, which are doubtlessly comon knowledge to many Brits.

3,5 stars. Nice read.
Susan Hampson
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Ashwin Chopra is a little unusual to the normal sort of detectives that I read about. Set in Mumbai there were lots of cultural differences and he has just retired from the police force, rather than just setting out. But the biggest difference was where as some people have a dog as a pet he has a baby elephant. An unusual gift from an uncle and one that at first he didn’t really know what to do with. One thing for sure though was that he is adorable, the elephant that is, but scared and pinning ...more
Aug 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
On a cold wet day in summer, there is nothing better than a bit of crime from a country where the sun actually makes an appearance. I decided to read The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra by Vaseem Khan, after hearing about it recently at the Bradford Literature Festival. It is the start of a quirky series set in Mumbai, India. It features a retired police officer and his pet baby elephant.

The story introduces Inspector Ashwin Chopra. We find out that Chopra is on his final day, before
Fred Shaw
Jan 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful story, delightful to read with laugh out loud moments. Incredible creativity. In Mumbai, a police detective retires and comes home to find he is the proud owner of ??? I won't give away this secret because it is too important. Read this book. You will be glad you did. The author Vaseem Kahn has another book and I am procuring it now. ...more
Jan 03, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a fun, and gentle, mystery, set in modern India. Inspector Chopra has been a Mumbai police inspector for many years, when he is forced into retirement because of a heart problem. However, his chance of stress free relaxation is made difficult on his last day of work, when he inherits two things – firstly, a case that his successor is unwilling to investigate, and, secondly, a baby elephant, left to him by his uncle.

The case involves the murder of a young man, found drowned near a sewer
Shabbeer Hassan
Aug 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, mystery, indian-lit
A sort of fun story with a baby elephant (India of course, so duh!) serving as the literal avatar of deus ex machina to a grumpy, stoic DI Chopra of Mumbai Police. Complete with cliches picked up in heaps from Bollywood, this is what a book version of the famed Tinseltown would have been.

My Rating - 2.5/5
Jul 06, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Forced into early retirement, Inspector Chopra feels the need to investigate a drowning which occurred on his last day in office. His higher-ups want to rule it accidental, but he gets a coroner's report on the sly and discovers his suspicions correct. He also received an unusually talented elephant from his uncle. The elephant even goes into his apartment. While Chopra gets himself into some hot water a couple of times because he acts alone, the book still entertains. His suspicious wife Poppy ...more
Kate (GirlReading)
A wonderfully written, gently paced detective novel. I loved the way Mumbai and Indian culture was portrayed, since I've not read many books set in India, I really enjoyed the imagery in this book. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the gentle pace of the story, it was such a lovely read. Great characters with a brilliant plot and the added bonus of an adorable baby elephant. ...more
The story opens on the day Inspector Chopra retires from the police; a day when he realises that his replacement is not going to care about the crimes committed against the poor; and the day he gets a delivery of a depressed baby elephant from his wacky late uncle.

Faced with the prospect of dreary boring retirement he decides to investigate the unexplained death of a local lad written off as suicide by his replacement. His little elephant – now named Ganesha after the elephant god – snaps out o
Kayla P
Jul 08, 2016 rated it did not like it
I wanted to love this book.
I carefully picked it out while I was visiting Powell's "city of books" and really wished I had picked something else.
It starts of promising: a retiring detective in India gets a baby elephant and one last murder case to solve! I was very disappointed with everything after that.
The book went all over the place. The elephant wasn't significant in 80% of the story... it almost feels as though it was added just for the cute cover.
Chopra's character is cliche and unlikabl
K.J. Charles
Mar 02, 2017 added it
Shelves: detective
Basically a cosy mystery, very much in the vein of No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency/Dr Siri. Very fluently written, vivid description of Mumbai; likeable characters; cute elephant for a bit of magic. Murder plot was a little thin and lacked grounding to give the reader a chance (or it was so incredibly clever I missed all the clues, one of the two).

I find something weird about cosy mysteries tbh. Let's curl up for a fun read about warm, mildly eccentric but good hearted characters solving savage, b
Dawn Michelle
I L O V E D this book!! OH. MY. GOSH.

What a great trip to Mumbai India this was! I loved learning about Inspector Chopra, his beautiful baby elephant Ganesh and his hilarious wife Poppy!! I cannot even go into details about this book because even one little glimpse will ruin it all for you. Just know that this is a most excellent book, and even BETTER audiobook [I loved every second of this] and you should be reading/listening to this right now. Go on! RUN to your store and buy it now. Go. ;-)

3-3.5 stars. A light start, with a baby elephant delivered to Ashwin Chopra, police officer, on the day of his retirement from the Mumbhai police force. Retirement doesn't sit well with Chopra, and he begins investigating, on his own, the death of a young man, while coping with an apparently despondent elephant. The case takes Chopra around the city, uncovering corruption (not surprising) leading to darker situations. The ending, however, was a return to the lightness of the beginning, with a wa ...more
Nov 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
My wife picked up an ARC of this at BookExpo in the spring, and loved it. She told me firmly that I should read it and so finally, after the requisite amount of resentful grumbling, I did. And, when I finished it, I thanked her for her persistence.

Inspector Ashwin Chopra of the Mumbai police retires relatively young at the insistence of his wife Poppy, because he had a minor heart attack a while back. On his last day he reluctantly leaves unfinished the case of a boy who's been found drowned; hi
Oct 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
I really enjoyed this book, it was amusing, silly and serious in equal amounts.
The excellent descriptions of Indian life in a large city such as Mumbai conjure up all kinds of images which engage all the senses. If anyone has visited India they will understand what I mean.
Who could not love the wonderful Chopra and his wife Poppy ? Not to mention a baby elephant... Wonderful !
Charming. Plot is not the strong point, and culprits’ confession at the end is a weak and non-credible finish, but the characters and depiction of life in Mumbai redeem it. I’ll read more. Can’t give it a four star rating, but I enjoyed it a lot.
Apr 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This review first appeared on our blog, where we also chat to the author about writing and Mumbai:

I can say without fear of contradiction that I am an expert in the tribulations faced by murder investigators in England and Scotland (you’d think they’d be the same but they’re not), Sweden, Norway and Denmark (ditto), the US, Botswana and Italy. You could set me an exam comparing and contrasting ways to establish times of death, types of murder weapons and
Cindy Burnett
Aug 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

The Unexpected of Inheritance of Inspector Chopra was such a fun read. Vaseem Khan created an intriguing mystery while also immersing the reader in modern Mumbai culture and attitudes. I thoroughly enjoyed learning so much about Mumbai today including the structure of the city, its personality and the many types of people who live there today.

On the very day he retires, Inspector Ashwin Chopra ends up with two new mysteries to solve. The first is the death of a boy from a poor family i
Mareli Thalwitzer
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great airport read. When you are in transit or on various transportation. A baby elephant is always good company. Will definitely read the rest of the series.
Nadine Jones
At first, I wasn't crazy about this book, but it slowly grew on me.  I expected a straight up detective mystery, but this is more of an over-the-top cozy mystery, with outsized characters who are turned into caricatures, and ludicrous situations played for humor (a baby elephant sitting in your living room watching soap operas with you???).  Once I adjusted my expectations, I found I enjoyed this quite a bit.  Inspector Chopra is a very likeable person, always seeking to do the right thing, kind ...more
Feb 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Whatever the recent upwards curve in publishing Indian detective novels is about, I'm totally here for it. More please. ...more
Susan in NC
I couldn’t get this book from my library, so listened to the audiobook through Scribd; the narrator was very good, expressive and giving each character their own voice, adding to my enjoyment.

I agree with other reviewers that this seemed more like a cozy mystery in parts, but I enjoyed it; Inspector Chopra is a great character, an admirable, decent, straight arrow, and I look forward to getting to know him and his wife Poppy in future mysteries. They seem to enjoy a loving, warm relationship, an
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Pattaya Youtuber: And other true stories from Thailand
  • The Missing Guests of the Magic Grove Hotel (Ethical Chiang Mai Detective Agency, #2)
  • The Case of the Reincarnated Client (Vish Puri, #5)
  • The Case of the Man Who Died Laughing (Vish Puri, #2)
  • A Most Peculiar Malaysian Murder (Inspector Singh Investigates #1)
  • A Bali Conspiracy Most Foul (Inspector Singh Investigates #2)
  • The Case of the Missing Servant (Vish Puri, #1)
  • Murder at the House of Rooster Happiness (Ethical Chiang Mai Detective Agency #1)
  • Confessions of a Bangkok Private Eye: True stories from the case files of Warren Olson
  • The Private Joys of Nnenna Maloney
  • The Case of the Deadly Butter Chicken (Vish Puri, #3)
  • The Case of the Love Commandos (Vish Puri, #4)
  • A Rising Man (Sam Wyndham, #1)
  • Death in the East (Sam Wyndham, #4)
  • Taken in Nuala (The Inspector de Silva Mysteries Book 8)
  • Rough Time in Nuala (The Inspector de Silva Mysteries #7)
  • Murder in Old Bombay
  • The Betel Nut Tree Mystery (Crown Colony #2)
See similar books…
See top shelves…
Vaseem Khan is the author of two crime series set in India, the Baby Ganesh Agency series, and the Malabar House historical crime novels. His first book, The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra, was a Times bestseller, now translated into 15 languages, and introduced Inspector Chopra of the Mumbai police and his sidekick, a one-year-old baby elephant. The second in the series won a Shamus A ...more

Other books in the series

Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation (5 books)
  • The Perplexing Theft of the Jewel in the Crown (Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation #2)
  • The Strange Disappearance of a Bollywood Star (Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation #3)
  • Murder at the Grand Raj Palace (Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation, #4)
  • Bad Day at the Vulture Club (Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation, #5)

Related Articles

If you've got an overflowing Want to Read shelf of books that you keep meaning to get to (one day!), you're in good company. Our company, that...
127 likes · 46 comments
“The only way to avoid falling prey to the perils of confusion is to never be confused about what you are. If you are an honest man, as I hope you will prove to be, never allow the circumstances of a moment to make you act against your nature. That way lies the ruin of everything you stand for.” 2 likes
“By the way, is it a boy or a girl?’ Bahadur opened his mouth to speak and then realised that he did not know the answer. ‘One minute, sahib.’ Without further ado, he scrambled onto the ground, lifted the elephant’s tail and attempted to ascertain the creature’s sex. ‘It is a boy, sahib.” 0 likes
More quotes…