cover image Duke: Inspector Mislan and the Expressway Murders

Duke: Inspector Mislan and the Expressway Murders

Rozlan Mohd Noor. Arcade Crimewise, $25.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-950691-41-8

Early in Noor’s impressive second whodunit featuring Insp. Mislan Latif of Kuala Lumpur’s Special Investigations Unit (after 2020’s 21 Immortals), Mislan and his loyal assistant, Det. Sgt. Johan Kamarudin, are called to a crime scene on the Duta–Ulu Klang Expressway. Two business executives have been found shot to death inside a locked Mercedes, which came to rest on the road’s divider in light traffic. Since the car’s doors and windows are locked, a murder-suicide is the obvious explanation for the fatalities. With no apparent motive for the crime, Mislan suspects the truth is more complicated, and begins considering how a third person could have been inside the Mercedes to commit two murders while leaving the automobile sealed after escaping. Mislan’s boss advises him to tread carefully, because one of the victims had some contact with the city’s anti-corruption commission. That someone later tries to frame the inspector for graft complicates his investigation. The combination of clever plotting and portrayal of life in Malaysia is a winner. Noor brilliantly integrates an unusual impossible crime into a gritty procedural story line. (Mar.)