Paul Mann

The Ganja Coast

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The Ganja Coast

"...astoundingly vivid scenes of a decadent city in the throes of life, the better to draw sharp, grim portraits of characters flirting with bizarre forms of death." - The New York Times. See more reviews

Sansi travels to the party town of Goa in search of evidence that will bring down a Mumbai crime lord and is drawn into the mysterious death of a child. His investigation takes him through a depraved drug culture of unimaginable evil that threatens him and the woman he loves, American newswoman Annie Ginnaro.

I had a dilemma to solve with The Ganja Coast, the sequel to Season of the Monsoon. I never intended Season of the Monsoon to be anything more than a stand alone book but Dan Zitin, my editor at Fawcett/Ballantine, liked it enough to ask me to write a series. Fortunately I liked the characters, Mumbai police detective, George Sansi, his American girlfriend, Annie Ginnaro, and George's mother, Pramila.

But, I had to address the fact that George had resigned from Crime Branch at the end of Season of the Monsoon. I hate literary devices that allow the main character to get back his old job as if nothing had happened so I decided to have George make use of his law degree and start his own law practice. This would keep him in the thick of things and had the added advantage that lawyering in Mumbai is every bit as lurid as police work.

The idea for The Ganja Coast came from a close friend of mine, David Pyette, in Toronto, Canada. Dave told me of time he'd spent in Goa, a relic of the old hippie trail from the 1960's, which sounded like a promising backdrop for a murder mystery. I went to see it for myself and found a kind of Never Never Land for hippie Peter Pans who never wanted to grow up. And, of course, the magic formula wasn't pixie dust, it was drugs. But don't forget, Goa is still India. And when you think you've heard of every possible extreme of human behavior the world has to offer India reminds you that you haven't.

I will say only this – the scene involving the cobra is absolutely true.