When Pat rents a room in Edinburgh, she acquires some interesting neighbors, including a pushy Stockbridge mother and her talented, sax-playing, 5-year-old son. Pat's job at an art gallery hardly keeps her busy, until she suspects one painting in the collection may be an undiscovered work from a Scottish master. As Pat handles the mystery of the painting, she and the people surrounding her confront issues of trust, love, and loss.
Chalk up another winner for McCall Smith, whose endlessly entertaining and perceptive novel is filled with delightfully authentic sketches of all the archetypes of Edinburgh society.
©2005 Alexander McCall Smith; (P)2005 Recorded Books, LLC
"Readers needn't possess plaid clothes or a brogue to savor this wise, witty send-up of Edinburgh rogues." (Booklist)
"The possibility of romance, the ongoing ups and downs of the large, well-drawn cast of characters, the intricate plot, and the way Smith nimbly jumps from situation to situation and POV to POV...works beautifully." (Publishers Weekly)
I love this series. The characters are fun and interesting. The plot twists enjoyable. I can almost imagine the author sitting in his writing room, giggling.
Interesting, humorous, pleasant.
Pat, ties in all the characters in the book.
Good book, easy to listen to. Looking forward to next book.
I enjoyed Ladies Detective Agency, but this one provoked the question "Why was this written?"
Didn't care about any of the characters. I found them all dull.
He sounded like he had food in his mouth & was chewing!
It was a joyous relief to hear the words "The End"!
Someone from Scotland who doesn't require h/er novels to have an actual... you know... plot.
Because of the way it was written, it's very choppy. The characters are somewhat archetypical and fairly shallow. I think if there was less Scotland-specific detail and a bit more "finish" to this, I'd have enjoyed it. Frankly, what he should have done was take the series, removed the issue numbers, put them all together and edited to his heart's content. Then he might have had a novel worthy of his talents.
Pleasant; limited range.
Disappointment. Just not up to McCall Smith's standards (outside of Scotland.)
Not worth a credit. I'm returning it.
I don't know about you, but why are there so so so many 5 star reviews. I LOVE books, but so few are 5 star.
Not engrossing, amusing ramblings in a way. I do like this style, but it is not a page turner. I love the way all the characters are loosely tied together.
Like Colin Bateman, a good Sunday read or listen.
This has to be one of the worst books ever recorded. I have to admit I purchased it because I really like the narrator, but even good narration cannot redeem a really bad book.
The book was originally written and published as a daily serial in a newspaper. At first I was intrigued by that idea. Some great literature was originally published that way; Dickens, for example. However, this story is way too slow. The worst part, however, is the character development. All the characters share a common characteristic. They are incredibly silly. They are simply too stupid to have a place in the world in general.
This was my first experience with an Alexander McCall Smith book. It will also be my last.
I was interested in purchasing this book for the mystery and Edinburgh scenery. However, I was disappointed on both accounts. The book starts off well enough, but then goes nowhere fast - ending horribly. I would skip it.
I am a big fan of the HBO series Ladies Number One Detective Agency so I thought this might be good. To be honest I could not finish the book. I really tried but I gave up after 43 chapters. I had hoped to gain some insight into life in Edinborough but this seemed to be overshadowed by the lives of a group of odd characters. I couldn't find much of a reason to like any of them. The plot twists were obvious and tedious. Sorry, I can't really think of a single positive thing to say about it.
It's a rare moment indeed when I find a book this boring. I couldn't manage to care enough to keep the characters in mind, and found myself wanting the radio on instead. Pass this one by, life's too short!
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