Search Results: "Alexander McCall Smith"


BOOK REVIEW

Released: June 1, 1991

"A secondary purchase for children's use; a treasure trove for all those who value folk literature presented with respect and scrupulous care. (Folklore. 12+)"
One of two collections initiating the ``International Folk Tale'' series. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

MY ITALIAN BULLDOZER by Alexander McCall Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 4, 2017

"McCall Smith knows how to concoct delightful fictions, but this one is undercooked."
McCall Smith (Chance Developments, 2016, etc.) adds to the overworked subgenre of Tuscan travel romance with this pallid story about a Scottish cookery writer recovering from his broken heart in Italy. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

EMMA by Alexander McCall Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 7, 2015

"In less capable hands, it could all seem clunky and crass. Instead, McCall Smith has written a delightfully droll, thoughtful novel that reflects on money's enduring role in relationships as well as on the nature of this meddlesome heroine's long-lived appeal."
In the latest installment of the Austen Project, McCall Smith (The Handsome Man's De Luxe Cafe, 2014, etc.) catapults snobbish matchmaker Emma Woodhouse into the 21st century.Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE MINOR ADJUSTMENT BEAUTY SALON by Alexander McCall Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Nov. 5, 2013

"A little slower-moving and more diffuse than many of the 13 preceding volumes in this celebrated series (The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection, 2012, etc.), but it's no more than you'd expect from a heroine whose fleetness has never been as big a draw as her wisdom."
Two and a half new cases for Precious Ramotswe, who presides over the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

WHAT W.H. AUDEN CAN DO FOR YOU by Alexander McCall Smith
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: Oct. 22, 2013

"A lovely yet overstretched article or essay topic; there's earnest enthusiasm aplenty but not enough else to support a full book."
A beloved author waxes poetic on an unlikely muse: the poet W.H. Auden. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE FORGOTTEN AFFAIRS OF YOUTH by Alexander McCall Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 6, 2011

"The woolliest of Isabel's eight adventures (The Charming Quirks of Others, 2010, etc.) at times seems little more than a catalogue of its heroine's always principled errors and misjudgments. But it shows again, and handsomely, the most lovable feature of Edinburgh: 'Everything is…connected somehow.'"
Edinburgh philosopher Isabel Dalhousie's cases often register low on the crime meter, but this one—the search for a new acquaintance's father—is 100 percent felony-free. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE UNBEARABLE LIGHTNESS OF SCONES by Alexander McCall Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 5, 2010

Life goes on, and on in this fifth helping of luminously understated adventures for the denizens of 44 Scotland Street and environs. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

TEA TIME FOR THE TRADITIONALLY BUILT by Alexander McCall Smith
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 21, 2009

"Episodes in Smith's series, like those in a long-running sitcom, have stopped competing with each other as better or worse and instead have gelled into a self-contained world into which audiences enter with pleasure and gratitude. Here's more of the same."
Mma Precious Ramotswe wrestles with a timeless problem—to cling to the old or embrace the new—in her tenth adventure. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE MIRACLE AT SPEEDY MOTORS by Alexander McCall Smith
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: April 15, 2008

"If there are fewer funny moments than in Mma Ramotswe's previous cases (Good Husband of Zebra Drive, 2007, etc.), there's a deepening gravity and sweetness you won't find anywhere else in the genre."
Mma Precious Ramotswe, Botswana's foremost detective, witnesses a miracle, though not the one she was hoping for. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

A DISTANT VIEW OF EVERYTHING by Alexander McCall Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 18, 2017

"'I have a tendency, I'm afraid, to think at a bit of a tangent,' the heroine confesses. Like-minded readers will fasten onto her latest plot-seasoned ruminations as manna from heaven."
Edinburgh philosopher Isabel Dalhousie's cases (The Novel Habits of Happiness, 2015, etc.) keep getting slighter and slighter. But her exceptionally well-titled 11th may be the slenderest of them all. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

SUNSHINE ON SCOTLAND STREET by Alexander McCall Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 12, 2014

"A tighter focus on fewer characters than the earlier installments (Bertie Plays the Blues, 2013, etc.) doesn't pay off in additional depth or sharper conflict but generates more serial complications per capita for a crew that's endlessly open to adventures while remaining immitigably themselves."
An eighth season of charmingly featherweight escapades, moral dilemmas, and errors committed and corrected and sometimes simply brushed aside by the denizens of 44 Scotland St. and its Edinburgh environs. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

Released: Dec. 26, 2012

"Gently but invincibly obtuse, von Igelfeld is too much an elephantine cartoon to inspire the love readers have given Precious Ramotswe and Isabel Dalhousie."
Prolific McCall Smith, who's unaccountably neglected Professor Dr. Dr. (honoris causa) (mult.) Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld ever since the trilogy that ended with At the Villa of Reduced Circumstances (2004), presents five more adventures for the eminent but clueless philologist. Read full book review >