Bookstore chain Starmark, in association with PanMacmillan India and The Telegraph t2, launched writer and editor Madhumita Bhattacharya's first novel, The Masala Murder on Friday.
Tollywood actress Swastika Mukherjee, film director Mainak Bhaumik and fashion designer Kallol Dutta were present at the event.
"I am here because I love reading books, especially thrillers," said Swastika.
"Mahumita is my first actor. Hope this novel turns into a movie one day," Bhaumik said.
The Masala Murder revolves around protagonist Reema Ray, who who is a food critic as well as a detective. Her worlds collide when a gourmet provisions supplier, she had once profiled, ends up dead under suspicious circumstances.
This first Reema Ray mystery follows a comic ride through Kolkata as Reema comes to terms with her feelings about the men in her life while whipping up delicious meals and being beset by criminals and the police alike.
In an interactive session with Madhumita, Kallol Dutta said, "After reading the book I found the protagonist, Reema very similar to you, since I know you well personally!"
"I wish I had such an exciting life like her but yes somethings are common for instance she likes to wear black...which is me, she has fashion journalist friends advising her and Reema likes to bake...which are again me," gushed Madhumita in reply.
"But apart from all these we don´t have anything much in common. She is more of an introvert person than I am," she added.
This is the first novel by the writer, who is in the process of creating the second one as this will result in a series of novels, where she has attempts to keep the books less descriptive to keep the mystery element in them alive.
Speaking on the title, Madhumita said, "My first two titles failed so it had to be The Masala Murder in the end!"
Her choice of genre is a response call taken to cater to the evergreen interest of Kolkatans in thrillers and mysteries.
"My inspiration was sparked by the mass market interest here. Kolkata also has a long line of successful writers on mystery and I love mystery as well. It is a response to the popularity of mystery," she said.
Reporting by Shabarni Basu