Sunday, March 8, 2009

Staff Picks - The Unbearable Lightness of Scones, by Alexander McCall Smith

I am a huge Alexander McCall Smith fan. I have read all of them. Even the folktales. Of all his series (The Number One Ladies Detective Agency, 44 Scotland Street, Isabel Dalhousie, Professor Dr von Igelfeld) Precious Ramotswe of The Number One Ladies Detective Agency has to be my favourite. (I am waiting for my turn to read Tea Time for the Traditionally Built - I'm number 4 in the list, so soon!).

The Unbearable Lightness of Scones, in the 44 Scotland Street series, features Bertie, who comes an awfully close second in my heart. Poor Bertie! Just when you think things are finally going to go his way, along comes Irene to pull the rug out from under him. In respect to fans who are waiting to read this one, I won't give anymore away. Except for Ian Rankin - just wait till you see what he does to Ian Rankin this time!

44 Scotland Street follows are group of Edinburghers through their love affairs, friendships, careers. The books was originally serialized in The Scotsman.

My praise isn't all glowing, however. I've had a hard time warming up to Isabel Dalhousie. I do keep reading the books in this series, but I am vaguely irritated by her. Am I alone?

If you haven't tried McCall Smith and you enjoy a gentle read with warm engaging characters, spiced with humour, you will want to give this author a try.

Novelist recommends these authors as readalikes for Alexander McCall Smith:

Agatha Christie
R.K. Narayan
James Thurber
Clyde Edgerton
Jon Hassler

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