Sunday, March 29, 2009

The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith

Genre: Mystery

From the Jacket

First published in the UK in 1998, and in the USA in 2001 by Polygon. Republished in 2002 and 2003 by Anchor.

This first novel in Alexander McCall Smith's widely acclaimed The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series tells the story of the delightfully cunning and enormously engaging Precious Ramotswe, who is drawn to her profession to "help people with problems in their lives." Immediately upon setting up shop in a small storefront in Gaborone, she is hired to track down a missing husband, uncover a con man, and follow a wayward daughter. But the case that tugs at her heart, and lands her in danger, is a missing eleven-year-old boy, who may have been snatched by witchdoctors.

The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency received two Booker Judges' Special Recommendations and was voted one of the International Books of the Year and the Millennium by the Times Literary Supplement.

My thoughts…

I listened to the audio version of this book. Although it was an interesting book, the short mystery cases were easily solvable. I love mysteries and I prefer when the entire book centers around one major case with many twists and turns. I just couldn’t get into this one. I know it’s a popular book, but not my cup of tea.

For reading challenge: Audio Reading Challenge


  1. I am sorry you didn't care for this one, Yvonne. I went into the book knowing that the label "mystery" was a bit of a misnomer and that it was really more about the characters and their interactions and daily life and so was able to enjoy it for what it was. I enjoy the series quite a bit--it's simplicity and gentle style. I know that's not for everyone though.

  2. I'm more of a straight mystery/ suspense reader. I'm not into the short stories and it really wasn't about the mysteries, but as you said, it was about the characters. I went into this book thinking it was a new mystery series...those are what I really love. Oh well, I'm glad I listened to it so I know now.

    I'm glad you enjoy it though. As I always say, there are different books for all of us and that's great. We can't all like the same thing :)

  3. Sorry to hear you didn't like it very much. I loved the simplicity of the story. We all have different tastes, that is what makes book blogging so interesting!

  4. Scrap girl - Absolutely! I do wonder if I would have liked the book better had I read the printed version instead of listening to the audio.

  5. I read the print version of this one, and found it just okay. I have enjoyed other books from the same author, though - this series just isn't my cup of tea.

  6. sorry to hear that this one didn't work for you. I have it in my tbr pile, but I haven't read it yet.

  7. I have read every book in this series and loved them all. As Literary Feline said, it is gentle and sweet. I love mysteries and thrillers as well, but this series has a special place in my heart.


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