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Tied to Deceit

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  72 ratings  ·  62 reviews
"A remarkable whodunit that's as sharp as it is concise." ― Kirkus Reviews

On a drizzly August morning, the inhabitants of the hill town of Sanover, Himachal Pradesh, wake up to the shocking news of the murder of the exquisite, secretive, malicious, and thoroughly immoral Devika Singh.

As Superintendent of Police Vishwanath Sharma begins to sift through the hidden secrets of
Hardcover, 1st, 286 pages
Published August 6th 2018 by Penguide Books
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3.85  · 
Rating details
 ·  72 ratings  ·  62 reviews

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Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 stars
I would call this a cerebral mystery, in that there is only 1 murder and little violence. Superintendent of Police Vishwanath Sharma is assigned to the murder of Devika Singh in the town of Sanover, Himachal Pradesh, located in the Himalayan foothills. He and Sub-Inspector Arjun Rawat begin a slow, methodical investigation into the murder, interviewing witnesses and building up a portrait of the murdered woman. Devika Singh was a manipulative woman who took advantage of almost everyone th
Nikki (Saturday Nite Reader)
I read the book synopsis and thought “I need to read this” as I am never one to turn down an interesting suspense read. I prefer a quick, whip through, can’t put down book, but can enjoy those that may move a bit slower if the ending is a slam dunk like “whoa” I did not expect that bombshell. Tied to Deceit is a slow moving, build-up type of story. Just when you think you may know what is happening another character is introduced that throws you for a loop: that was done rather well.

The bones of
May 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Five stars for me. It was awesomely satisfying to sink my teeth into a book full of layers and complexities.
Devika Singh is a woman nobody likes; she is beautiful, cunning, thoroughly immoral and vicious. One morning, she is found murdered in her bed. Enters SP Vishwanath Sharma. As he starts to investigate the murder, it becomes clear that there are too many suspects and motives; almost everyone who knew her seems to have a motive for killing her. As Sharma delves further into the investigation
Lili  Marcus
Aug 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story started with Gayatri reminiscing about the murder that happened a year ago and it's obvious she's filled with so much regret that instantly made me root for her whatever revelations is in store for me ahead. Like it wouldn't matter if she's the murderer or not. Needless to say, I'm hooked right from the start. I love how mysterious and at the same time emotional the storyline goes. I'm intrigued on how everything will play out throughout the story.

And then Police Superintendent, Vishwa
Scarlett Readz and Runz....Through Novel Time & Distance
Set in the Himalayan foothills, this murder mystery is the quint essential sleuth detective story with a beautiful backdrop.

As the novel starts out on the balcony of the Bhardwaj’s couple on a gorgeous morning, it develops into a story with detailed background of the family affairs and upbringing of these characters that led their marriage to that day. Not only has their long marriage been rocky, but the drama of inheritance and bitter grief has set a shaky foundation for the “success” they have
Jun 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a very quiet yet satisfying mystery set in a small town in India. When a young woman named Devika is murdered, there are many suspects as she was considered rude and unlikable and was also having an affair with the brilliant doctor for whom she worked. So many people are questioned and many clues are slowly revealed as Sharma and his team work to uncover the circumstances surrounding the murder as well as motives as her life held many secrets unknown to those closest to her. If you enjo ...more
Jul 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Devika Singh, a Nurse by profession is a beautiful, single woman whom nobody likes, she is thoroughly immoral, vile and vicious, and she is found murdered in her home and thus starts our journey along with SP Vishwanath Sharma to unravel the different layers of mystery. As Sharma along with his assistant Rawat starts to investigate the murder, it becomes clear that there may be many suspects involved in this murder mystery, as everyone hates Devika and has a plausible motive for killing her.

The book was a police procedural set in the 1970s where India didn’t have the investigative technology and forensics. The police basically depended only on witness statements, alibis, and body language to know the veracity of those statements. These parts were detailed and the hard work of the cops were brought to light.

The investigation was great, I liked the way Inspector Vishwanath Sharma went about it, with his sidekick deputy Rawat. The team had a great camaraderie going on. They respected
Ann Girdharry
This is a slow paced mystery based in India.
Thank you to Net Galley and Penguide book for the Advanced Reader Copy. This is my honest review.

A young woman, Devika, is found murdered. She was attractive and she was having an affair. She is unpopular at the hospital where she works. Devika was also disliked by her members of her own family because she chose to be independent and live apart from her husband.

There are numerous suspects for Devika's murder. Everyone seems to have a possible motive
Sohinee Reads & Reviews (Bookarlo)
Read The Full Review Here:


‘Tied to Deceit’ is a mystery novel spun around the death of Devika Singh, a woman who was known for her manipulative behaviour, secret nature and clandestine affairs.

It is in the month of August that the murder takes place. Superintendent of Police, Viswanath Sharma takes charge of the case and slowly starts to uncover bits and pieces of Devika’s life which she kept secret and from these discoveries, many
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tied to Deceit has all the classic elements of a traditional murder mystery: particular setting, a small town, a young, merciless, beautiful woman, a grisly murder and assorted relatives and friends. SP Vishwanath Sharma must sort our everything in the end.

The ultimate outcome is excellent: fast and nicely tidied up. There’s not a single dull moment throughout the book. As a reader, you follow Devika Singh’s life’s hidden layers keenly and try to keep up with what was going on around her life t
Trigger Warning: Suicide

It all started when news broke of a woman murdered, Devika Singh, mostly described as a person you won’t get along with, vile, immoral and manipulative. In small-town Sanover in India. News such as this is something that everyone talks about.

Issues get more complicated when Superintendent of Police Vishwanath Sharma started to investigate the abhorrent death of Devinka Singh. Digging in deep and unscaling secrets that would direct him to the murderer.

I like how strong thi
Banaja Prakashini
Jul 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Full review-

The plot was unpredictable, and by some way, if you are able to make a wild guess about the murderer, you would never be able to trace the chain of events that led to the murder.

This book has turned out to be one of my best reads of 2018, as it has a perfect balance of everything. The cover is extremely attractive, and I guess its something about Devika on the cover. The title is a good choice, though I would have loved some direct indication
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

“From the deepest desires often come the deadliest hate.” — Socrates

Neena H. Brar’s ‘Tied to Deceit’ has a consistency to it in the sense that it follows the route of the major British mysteries: first the setting is sketched, the characters are introduced, the crime occurs, main detective arrives and the characters including suspects and near and dear ones of the victim are interviewed one by one. But it also differs from the good old-fashioned mysteries: as interviews start, the author adds la
May 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
SP Vishwanath Sharma and his assistant, Sub Inspector Rawat are investigating the murder of beautiful, cunning Devika Singh, who has earlier been fired from her job in the hospital owned by Dr. Rajinder Bhardwaj, owing to her hand in death of a young suicide patient. Coincidentally, she had an affair with the old doctor which doctor’s wife, Gayatri Bhardwaj came to know about. A few days later, she’s found murdered in her bed. The investigation that looks straightforward in the beginning turns o ...more
Elaine Tomasso
Aug 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would like to thank Netgalley and Penguide books for a review copy of Tied to Deceit, a début police procedural set in the town of Sanover, Punjab in the early 1970s.

When Devika Singh is murdered Superintendent Sharma and his trusty sidekick, Sub-Inspector Rawat, are charged with the investigation but it's less than straightforward as the more they investigate the more they realise that Devika kept many secrets and each secret supplies another motive and suspect.

I thoroughly enjoyed Tied to De
Rekha Rao
Aug 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As I started reading, I was transported back to the times when Ekta Kapoor's serials were a craze. Juicy gossips, who had an affair with who, illegitimate kids and what not. Just like how a Garam Masala has a good mixture of all the aromatic spices, this story too had a good dose of everything sweet and spice.

Since the story was set in the 1970's, there was no DNA testing and all the latest forensic gadgets that they use in the modern times. Solving a murder case was mostly based on intuition an
Filipa Batista
Jul 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a copy provided by the publisher and the author in exchange of an honest review. Thank you to them! 

This book was an amazing surprise! I have to tell you that the author captivated my attention since the very begining to the end. The plot structure is one of things that I liked the most, to me a good book has to have these on point like a way to guide my reading.

Another thing I enjoyed was the clues given in a slow and measured way. The whole mystery environment was created around the un
Skyler Boudreau
Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of the things I particularly enjoyed about Tied to Deceit was the way author Neena H. Brar took her time with the mystery. She lets it unfold slowly before the readers, taking care to spend time with each member of the huge cast of characters. It allows the reader to become completely immersed in the investigation themselves.

Brar does a wonderful job of revealing evidence to the reader bit by bit. She allows her readers to tray and draw their own conclusions before dropping the final bombshe
May 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“God has given you one face and you give yourself another.” Hamlet by Shakespeare.

Tied to deceit is a whodunit primarily. The strength of a good murder mystery that you should not know about the identity of the killer till the last scene. The conflict in story comes from the weaknesses of human character. Here this book works big time. Unsuccessful marriages, greed, philandering and blackmail: you name it and it has it all.

Dr Rajinder Bhardwaj and his wife Gayatri are a highly respected upper
Hannelore Cheney
Thank you NetGalley and Penguide Books for the eARC.
Set in a small town in India, this clever mystery is a huge treat. Having lived in India as a kid, I love books set there and this one is particularly good.
Devica Singh, a beautiful young woman, is murdered. She was vain, heartless and ruthless and universally hated in the community, so there are plenty of possible suspects. We are afforded many peeks into her life, showing why so many people could have wanted to kill her. She was definitely an
After looking at the cover and the blurb, I decided to give it a go. And wow, what an intriguing read it turned out to be! The plot is basically simple but story becomes complex with lots of twists & turns. It is the characters that make the book. Brar has a talent for drawing multi-faceted people which resonate with the readers. I already look forward to Brar's 2nd book.
Sam (samyinbookworld)
Tied to Deceit is a mystery novel written by Neena H. Brar.

A young woman, who goes by the name Devika, works in administration in a hospital in a small Indian city. She is an attractive and cunning woman, who is unpopular in her workplace and also in her hometown. And she had an affair with the chief of the hospital dr. Bhardway. One day she is found murdered in her own apartment.

In the story, we follow detective Sharma and his assistant who investigate the numerous suspects for Devika's murder.
Aug 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mystery has always been my favourite genre of reading. The new synapses keep on forming in your brain while reading a mystery as you keep on exercising your brain for guessing who the murderer would be. 'Tied to deceit' is one such mystery which keeps you on your toes for the entire period of reading it. There was not even a single moment when I didn't experience goosebumps and depending on the ongoing scenario, I made an entirely different guess every two hours about who must have murdered the ...more
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A sharp literary mystery set in a small town in 70's India, Tied to Deceit is a delightful read. The book is more than a murder mystery. Once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down and finished it in two days.

The best thing I loved about Tied to deceit is its characterization. The author did an excellent job of developing her characters, adding plenty of shades to their personality. For the same reason, I love Robert Gallbraith's (Rowling's Strike series)books. I loved reading about diffe
Jun 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
The story is a murder mystery with one clue leading to another and one suspect leading to another. The characters are realistic and well developed. Though there are many of them, each has a role to play in the story.
The scenes and nature have been described in detail. So also the various settings. The language is simple and easy to follow. Each chapter begins with a quote which gives an idea of the chapter.
The author has tied up the loose ends well and the book feels complete at the end. The cha
Gunjan Mittal
Jun 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Some mystery books keep you wanting for more and this one was just that! The story is set in 1974 in a town of Himachal Pradesh called Sanover.

This is a story of Dr Rajinder Bhardwaj and his wife Gayatri, who have been married for over two decades. Dr Rajinder Bhardwaj was the owner and head physician at Lifeline Hospital in Sanover. He and his wife were successfully keeping a façade for the world of a happy married life. Gayatri had some idea about her husband’s infidelities but was ignoring th
Upkar Singh
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was pleasantly surprised to find this debut author. Although, mostly her characters are either black or white, Brar has this wonderful ability to give her characters faults, self doubt and selfishness. Devika Singh, for example, who died quite early in the book and who completely dominates the story, is mostly black and yet there’s this tiny bit of grey to her personality. The characters are carefully developed: layers are added to their personality and readers get regular dose of shocking dis ...more
Archana Aggarwal
May 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you Net Galley. A delightful mystery/police procedural set in India. I enjoyed reading it very much. It was fun to read a mystery set in small town India. I look forward to reading more by the author. Highly recommended.
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Making Connections: 5269. - TIED TO DECEIT by Neena H. Brar 7 22 Jun 22, 2018 08:27AM  
Neena H. Brar lives in Edmonton, Canada with her husband, two children, a highly energetic German Shepherd, and a lifetime collection of her favorite books.

A hermit at heart, she's a permissive mother, a reluctant housekeeper, a superb cook, and a hard-core reader.

Tied to Deceit is her debut novel.
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“Being rich and powerful does that to you. You don’t get a chance to offer any clarification because people dare not ask you a thing. They would prefer to hear someone else’s half truth, then make up the other half, and then whisper a twisted version in someone else’s ear. The whole matter gets distorted in no time, so much so, that it no longer resembles the actual facts.” 5 likes
“It wasn’t an unhappy marriage? Could a marriage be happy, standing on a shaky ground of adultery and a disregard for the wife’s feelings? He didn’t say anything; he listened to her quietly.” 5 likes
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