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This book is the third book in the series. I highly suggest that you read my other reviews on this series, as it may make this review easier to read. The first book in the series is: "The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency" (This also is the name of the series) and 2nd in the series is: "Tears of the Giraffe".
Are you back now? Well #I really enjoyed this book, but I've found the more of this series I read, the more I was getting bored of it. I have to admit, while reading this book, I was thinking about what rating I should give it, as I felt the book was missing something. However when I got close to the ending, I felt a lot better and whatever was missing to start off with, had returned. And so, if that ending wasn't there, the rating would have been low, so I am grateful for the ending, as it pushed my rating much higher!
Right, on with the author... If you personally, or anyone in that matter, came up to me a year ago and asked me if I am aware of Alexander McCall Smith's books, I would have replied with "who?" and just simply walked off (considering complete strangers asking very unimportant questions should not appear in my everyday life). But it is now obvious that I know a lot about this author, I have read a total number of three of his works (the first three books in "The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency Series"), and this has helped me know that I enjoy his writing style which is simple and intriguing. All (or nearly all) of his books that have been published appears on my wish list, and occasionally (just out of generosity) I receive these wish list books through the post. I now have 2 or more of his books waiting to be read by me, and I personally know that I will enjoy them as I fully enjoy his writing skills.
Precious Ramotswe's business is having financial difficulties and to save money, Precious and her fiancé, Mr. Matekoni, have decided to run both her detective agency and his mechanical garage out of the same house. Mr. Matekoni is not feeling well, but refuses to see a doctor, and Precious suspects depression. She gets the formidable Mma Potokwani, whom Mr. Matekoni has immense respect for, to take him to the doctor and take care of him while she sets off into the country to investigate a possible attempt at poisoning. Meanwhile, her assistant/secretary, Mma Makutsi, takes over both the agency and the garage and runs both with extreme efficiency. While Precious is away, she is handed an unusual case to solve, namely to find out if the entrants in a beauty contest are good girls.
Like the previous two books, this is more of a character study than a crime mystery. The author handles the subjects of family jealousy and mental illness in a sympathetic and gentle manner.
I think these books in the series, truly shows what it is like over there. Alexander McCall Smith has managed to show that amazingly and really well. This story is just pure escapism, but it also shows what people are like over there.
This is obviously a detective novel; it even proves it in the title of the series. However I don't think it is JUST a detective novel. It follows people's everyday lives! If I compare this to other detective novels that I have read such as "The Big Sleep - Raymond Chandler", and "The Kinsey Millhone Series - Sue Grafton", it shows that this book is totally different, as this book doesn't just follow the detective side, where you have to try and solve what has happened and who did it, instead this shows Mma Ramotswe's life with her soon to be husband. It also follows Mma Makutsi life. So this isn't JUST a detective novel.
I found this book really boring to start off with, I don't really know why I did, but it didn't just capture me straight away like the other books did, however it picked up near the end, and therefore made the book interesting, and I wanted to read more and more. The ending was BRILLIANT, and that explains my rating. The emotions run through the book easily, and occasionally affect you now and again. I have to admit, that if I had to re-read this series, I may just skip this book. So it isn't one I would re-read, I may just skip to the end, as that was a lot more exciting!
I very much doubt this book would appeal to anyone to be honest, however I think the whole series would interest the people who like detective novels. But to be honest, I definitely wouldn't recommend this book to anyone, although, if you are reading the series, you HAVE to read this book, there's no escaping it!
This book is really well written, I am happy it has managed to capture what it is like over there, I've never been, but I presume it is similar to what is shown in the book! I just hope the next books in the series aren't as boring as this one!
Thank you all for reading and I hope I have helped some people out!
This is the third in the series of The No.1 Ladies'Detective Agency novels.It is set in Gaborone in Botswana and the main character in the books is Precious Ramotswe.
Precious Ramotswe is engaged to the mechanic and owner of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors and as the Dectective Agency was having difficulty to exist she was forced to make some difficult decisions. She moves her business into the office of her fiance's garage and makes Mma Grace Matekoni her assistant manager.
In this book she solves a case of a government man's brother who he thinks is being poisoned.
This is a very light and amusing book and with the description of Botswana and scenary you feel you have been transported right there.
You are told about how important certains things are to the country like owning cattle. Also the traditions and culture of the country. It certainly makes me want to investigate the country further as I enjoyed the book and cannot wait to read more in the series.A good holiday read as it is so easy to pick up and put down.All I can say is if you have not read any of these just try .
Morality For Beautiful Girls is the third volume in the No1 Ladies' Detective Agency Series, by Alexander McCall Smith. (Polygon Publishing 2001) It is set in Botswana.
Precious Ramotswe faces serious problems at home and at work in this edition. Everything seems to be falling apart but a cup of bush tea seems to make it all bearable.
The detective agency is having financial difficulties, partly because she doesn't charge enough and partly because she is apt to get embroiled in non paying cases at times. She decides to move offices and cut down on overheads by sharing the office at Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors with her husband to be, Mr J.L.B. Matekoni, who is always referred to by his full title in all the books in this series. We never get to know his first names.
The Motor Company is in bad shape where administration is concerned and it needs her help but Mr Matekoni needs her too. He is unwell and refuses to admit it, or get help.
The agency has some interesting but puzzling and taxing cases to deal with and this preoccupies Precious even though so much is going on in her life
A government official has a sister-in-law who is trying to poison his brother, or so he thinks. This requires urgent attention because the official fears for the life of his brother. He is also an important contact for the business.
Then there is the beauty pageant whose contestants are not quite what they seem and certainly not as good as their looks when it comes to their personal behaviour. Our lady detective is charged with investigating them and finding out which of them is the most suitable to win the title of beauty queen.
A strange young boy emerges from the jungle, looking startled by the world. He is naked and smells of lions. The matron at the local children's home has resorted to locking him up because he is like a wild animal. Mma Ramotswe is asked to investigate and with the help of Mr J.L.B.Matekoni they make some headway.
This is a an easy read just like this author's other books in this series. It is much more enjoyable if you have already ready the previous two books, however it can be read as a standalone volume. This book is fun, and it is the kind of story that draws you in. It reflects the slow, easy going life style of old Botswana which the author knows only too well from his childhood days.