The Double Comfort Safari Club (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Series #11)

The Double Comfort Safari Club (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Series #11)

by Alexander McCall Smith

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780307277480
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 03/08/2011
Series: No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Series , #11
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 153,206
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Alexander McCall Smith is also the author of the Isabel Dalhousie series, the Portuguese Irregular Verbs series, and the 44 Scotland Street series. He is professor emeritus of medical law at the University of Edinburgh and has served on many national and international bodies concerned with bioethics. He was born in what is now known as Zimbabwe and taught law at the University of Botswana. He lives in Scotland. Visit his website at www.alexandermccallsmith.com.

Hometown:

Edinburgh, Scotland

Date of Birth:

August 24, 1948

Place of Birth:

Zimbabwe

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One
YOU DO NOT CHANGE PEOPLE BY SHOUTING AT THEM

No car, thought Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni, that great mechanic, and good man. No car . . .

He paused. It was necessary, he felt, to order the mind when one was about to think something profound. And Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni was at that moment on the verge of an exceptionally important thought, even though its final shape had yet to reveal itself. How much easier it was for Mma Ramotswe—she put things so well, so succinctly, so profoundly, and appeared to do this with such little effort. It was very different if one was a mechanic, and therefore not used to telling people—in the nicest possible way, of course—how to run their lives. Then one had to think quite hard to find just the right words that would make people sit up and say, “But that is very true, Rra!” Or, especially if you were Mma Ramotswe, “But surely that is well known!”

He had very few criticisms to make of Precious Ramotswe, his wife and founder of the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, but if one were to make a list of her faults—which would be a minuscule document, barely visible, indeed, to the naked eye—one would perhaps have to include a tendency (only a slight tendency, of course) to claim that things that she happened to believe were well known. This phrase gave these beliefs a sort of unassailable authority, the status that went with facts that all right-thinking people would readily acknowledge—such as the fact that the sun rose in the east, over the undulating canopy of acacia that stretched along Botswana’s border, over the waters of the great Limpopo River itself that now, at the height of the rainy season, flowed deep and fast towards the ocean half a continent away. Or the fact that Seretse Khama had been the first President of Botswana; or even the truism that Botswana was one of the finest and most peaceful countries in the world. All of these facts were indeed both incontestable and well known; whereas Mma Ramotswe’s pronouncements, to which she attributed the special status of being well known, were often, rather, statements of opinion. There was a difference, thought Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni, but it was not one he was planning to point out; there were some things, after all, that it was not helpful for a husband to say to his wife and that, he thought, was probably one of them.

Now, his thoughts having been properly marshalled, the right words came to him in a neat, economical expression: No car is entirely perfect. That was what he wanted to say, and these words were all that was needed to say it. So he said it once more. No car is entirely perfect.

In his experience, which was considerable—as the proprietor of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors and attending physician, therefore, to a whole fleet of middle-ranking cars—every vehicle had its bad points, its foibles, its rattles, its complaints; and this, he thought, was the language of machinery, those idiosyncratic engine sounds by which a car would strive to communicate with those with ears to listen, usually mechanics. Every car had its good points too: a comfortable driving seat, perhaps, moulded over the years to the shape of the car’s owner, or an engine that started the first time without hesitation or complaint, even on the coldest winter morning, when the air above Botswana was dry and crisp and sharp in the lungs. Each car, then, was an individual, and if only he could get his apprentices to grasp that fact, their work might be a little bit more reliable and less prone to require redoing by him. Push, shove, twist: these were no mantras for a good mechanic. Listen, coax, soothe: that should be the motto inscribed above the entrance to every garage; that, or the words which he had once seen printed on the advertisement for a garage in Francistown: Your car is ours.

That slogan, persuasive though it might have sounded, had given him pause. It was a little ambiguous, he decided: on the one hand, it might be taken to suggest that the garage was in the business of taking people’s cars away from them—an unfortunate choice of words if read that way. On the other, it could mean that the garage staff treated clients’ cars with the same care that they treated their own. That, he thought, is what they meant, and it would have been preferable if they had said it. It is always better to say what you mean—it was his wife, Mma Ramotswe, who said that, and he had always assumed that she meant it.

No, he mused: there is no such thing as a perfect car, and if every car had its good and bad points, it was the same with people. Just as every person had his or her little ways—habits that niggled or irritated others, annoying mannerisms, vices and failings, moments of selfishness—so too did they have their good points: a winning smile, an infectious sense of humour, the ability to cook a favourite dish just the way you wanted it.

That was the way the world was; it was composed of a few almost perfect people (ourselves); then there were a good many people who generally did their best but were not all that perfect (our friends and colleagues); and finally, there were a few rather nasty ones (our enemies and opponents). Most people fell into that middle group—those who did their best—and the last group was, thankfully, very small and not much in evidence in places like Botswana, where he was fortunate enough to live.

These reflections came to Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni while he was driving his tow-truck down the Lobatse Road. He was on what Mma Ramotswe described as one of his errands of mercy. In this case he was setting out to rescue the car of one Mma Constance Mateleke, a senior and highly regarded midwife and, as it happened, a long-standing friend of Mma Ramotswe. She had called him from the roadside. “Quite dead,” said Mma Mateleke through the faint, crackling line of her mobile phone. “Stopped. Plenty of petrol. Just stopped like that, Mr. Matekoni. Dead.”

Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni smiled to himself. “No car dies for ever,” he consoled her. “When a car seems to die, it is sometimes just sleeping. Like Lazarus, you know.” He was not quite sure of the analogy. As a boy he had heard the story of Lazarus at Sunday School in Molepolole, but his recollection was now hazy. It was many years ago, and the stories of that time, the real, the made-up, the long-winded tales of the old people—all of these had a tendency to get mixed up and become one. There were seven lean cows in somebody’s dream, or was it five lean cows and seven fat ones?

“So you are calling yourself Jesus Christ now, are you, Mr. Matekoni? No more Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors, is it? Jesus Christ Motors now?” retorted Mma Mateleke. “You say that you can raise cars from the dead. Is that what you’re saying?”

Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni chuckled. “Certainly not. No, I am just a mechanic, but I know how to wake cars up. That is not a special thing. Any mechanic can wake a car.” Not apprentices, though, he thought.

“We’ll see,” she said. “I have great faith in you, Mr. Matekoni, but this car seems very sick now. And time is running away. Perhaps we should stop talking on the phone and you should be getting into your truck to come and help me.”

So it was that he came to be travelling down the Lobatse Road, on a pleasantly fresh morning, allowing his thoughts to wander on the broad subject of perfection and flaws. On either side of the road the country rolled out in a grey-green carpet of thorn bush, stretching off into the distance, to where the rocky outcrops of the hills marked the end of the land and the beginning of the sky. The rains had brought thick new grass sprouting up between the trees; this was good, as the cattle would soon become fat on the abundant sweet forage it provided. And it was good for Botswana too, as fat cattle meant fat people—not too fat, of course, but well-fed and prosperous-looking; people who were happy to be who they were and where they were.

Yes, thought Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni, even if no country was absolutely perfect, Botswana, surely, came as close as one could get. He closed his eyes in contentment, and then quickly remembered that he was driving, and opened them again. A car behind him—not a car that he recognised—had driven to within a few feet of the rear of his tow-truck, and was aggressively looking for an opportunity to pass. The problem, though, was that the Lobatse Road was busy with traffic coming the other way, and there was a vehicle in front of Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni that was in no hurry to get anywhere; it was a driver like Mma Potokwane, he imagined, who ambled along and frequently knocked the gear-stick out of gear as she waved her hand to emphasise some point she was making to a passenger. Yet Mma Potokwane, and this slow driver ahead of him, he reminded himself, had a right to take things gently if they wished. Lobatse would not go away, and whether one reached it at eleven in the morning or half past eleven would surely matter very little.

He looked in his rear-view mirror. He could not make out the face of the driver, who was sitting well back in his seat, and he could not therefore engage in eye contact with him. He should calm down, thought Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni, rather than . . . His line of thought was interrupted by the sudden swerving of the other vehicle as it pulled over sharply to the left. Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni, well versed as he was in the ways of every sort of driver, gripped his steering wheel hard and muttered under his breath. What was being attempted was that most dangerous of manoeuvres—overtaking on the wrong side.

He steered a steady course, carefully applying his brakes so as to allow the other driver ample opportunity to effect his passing as quickly as possible. Not that he deserved the consideration, of course, but Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni knew that when another driver did something dangerous it was best to allow him to finish what he was doing and get out of the way.

In a cloud of dust and gravel chips thrown up off the unpaved verge of the road, the impatient car shot past, before swerving again to get back onto the tarmac. Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni felt the urge to lean on his horn and flash his lights in anger, but he did neither of these things. The other driver knew that what he had done was wrong; there was no need to engage in an abusive exchange which would lead nowhere, and would certainly not change that driver’s ways. “You do not change people by shouting at them,” Mma Ramotswe had once observed. And she was right: sounding one’s horn, shouting—these were much the same things, and achieved equally little.

And then an extraordinary thing happened. The impatient driver, his illegal manoeuvre over, and now clear of the tow-truck, looked in his mirror and gave a scrupulously polite thank-you wave to Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni. And Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni, taken by surprise, responded with an equally polite wave of acknowledgement, as one would reply to any roadside courtesy or show of good driving manners. That was the curious thing about Botswana; even when people were rude—and some degree of human rudeness was inevitable—they were rude in a fairly polite way.


From the Hardcover edition.

Reading Group Guide

The questions, topics, and other material that follow are intended to enhance your group’s conversation about The Double Comfort Safari Club, the latest installment in Alexander McCall Smith’s beloved series, The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency.

1. Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni thinks of himself as less clever than his wife. What happens in the opening scene that proves him to be as observant and intuitive as Mma Ramotswe herself (pp. 7–14)?

2. The differences between men and women have long been a topic of discussion between Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi. Mma Makutsi thinks, “Of course men and women were different, and women were, on the whole, different in a better way. . . . Women were capable of doing rather more than men” (p. 38). Does this prove true in the course of the story?

3. Botswana is more than just a setting in these stories. Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni thinks about the country as he drives to the aid of Mma Mateleke (p. 4), while Mma Ramotswe thinks about her father’s Botswana “in which young people had shown respect for older people” (p. 34). What does Botswana represent, for Mma Ramotswe particularly?

4. Mma Makutsi challenges the patience and kindness of Mma Ramotswe often in this novel. How does Mma Ramotswe respond to Grace’s suggestion about switching teapots? Why does she buy Grace a new pair of boots?

5. “How to Love Your Country Again” is a chapter that appears not to advance the plot. What is the purpose, then, of this seeming pause in the story? What are some of the observations and reflections here that provide insight into Mma Ramotswe’s character?

6. What is at stake in the struggle between Grace and Phuti’s aunt? Do you find Phuti’s timidity disturbing as the story goes on? Is this an aspect of his character that Grace fully accepts?

7. What is the lesson of the visiting priest who gives the sermon in the cathedral? Why does Mma Ramotswe change her mind about telling people not to weep (pp. 67–68)?

8. Mma Ramotswe defines wisdom as “an understanding of the feelings of others and of what would work and what would not work; which stood by one’s shoulder and said this is right or this is wrong, or this person is lying or this person is telling the truth” (p. 34). What do you think of this definition of the term? Is wisdom the key to her success as a detective?

9. Violet Sephotho has convinced Robert Kereleng to put his new house in her name. Why does her plan backfire (pp. 147–49)? Why is Grace so happy about this (pp. 153–54)?

10. When Precious and Grace travel to the Okavango Delta, several comic scenes develop. What are some of your favorite funny moments during their trip?

11. Mma Ramotswe has been hired to find an unnamed guide at a safari camp, to whom an American woman has left a large amount of money. A coincidence—two women named Mrs. Grant—causes Mma Ramotswe to tell the wrong man he will receive the bequest. But another coincidence resolves the difficulty (pp. 187, 194). Would you consider this outcome a matter of plot manipulation or a plausible situation, given the closeness of kinship ties in a place like Botswana?

12. Why does Mma Potokwane succeed in the confrontation with Phuti’s aunt? What is Mma Potokwane willing to do that Mma Ramotswe did not do (pp. 206–10)? Is this because Mma Ramotswe is too kind to act forcefully?

13. In most detective fiction, readers seek the identity of the criminal or the resolution of a mystery. Who is the guilty party, and what if anything is the mystery, in The Double Comfort Safari Club? How does Mma Ramotswe differ from most fictional detectives? How do plot and pace differ, and what other unique features distinguish the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series from other detective fiction?

14. How does Mma Ramotswe figure out what is going on in Mma Mateleke’s marriage? How well does she manage her tricky conversations with the husband and the wife?

15. The novel’s ending brings a happy reunion of Grace and Phuti, who says that Grace will be “Mma Radiphuti . . . very soon now” (p. 210). Do you expect that the marriage will take place in the next installment?


(For a complete list of available reading group guides, and to sign up for the Reading Group Center e-newsletter, visit www.readinggroupcenter.com.)

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The Double Comfort Safari Club (The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Series #11) 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 193 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In Gaborone, Botswana a delivery truck backs into salesman Phuti Radiphuti, crushing his leg against a wall. He is rushed to the hospital. When his fiancée Grace Makutsi tries to see him, his aunt refuses to grant her entrance; shaking up the timid young woman. At the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency where Grace is the office assistant, owner investigator Precious Ramotswe works on a case for a late American. Twin City resident Estelle Grant left $3,000 to the kind guide who took her on a safari to the Okavango Delta. However, as she was dying Estelle could not recall his name or that of his camp. The office's other cases involves biologist Robert Monageng Kereleng seduced out of his home by a femme fatale con artist and midwife Constance Mateleke wanting proof of her husband's alleged affair. As always with this warm series, the mysteries take a back seat to the human drama as the wonderful heroine works her caseload using wit and acumen while making Tea Time for the Traditionally Built. With a charming look at Botswana, fans of the saga will enjoy the latest cozy. Harriet Klausner
1DANA3 More than 1 year ago
Lesson learned:"Do not complain about your life. Do not blame others for things that you have brought upon yourself. Be content with who you are and where you are, and do whatever you can to bring to others such contentment and joy and understanding that you have managed to find yourself." What can I say? Precious Ramotswe is on the case of a mystery guide who has been left a large legacy by a grateful American tourist who remembers their kindness. The only trouble is that now the late tourist could not remember the name or the name of the company they worked for. I enjoyed the details about Botswana and life there. Unlike what we hear on the news, from a Botswana/African perspective and people everywhere, the positive vantage point on life is so encouraging to read. This and all of Smith's books are a joy to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Every time you think McCall-Smith must be running out of new situations for Mma Romotswa, he comes up with a fresh batch of new situations. I am a great fan of the books, and I love the HBO series (when WILL they do a second season?)- but listening to The Double Comfort Safari Club, read slowly and in beautiful voice, it reminded me of how much of the philosophy and internal thought process is missing from the television adaptation. There is a place for both. You will not be disappointed in this newest book. It may not be an action-thriller, but it does leave you on the edge of your seat as you await the fate of the characters that you have come to care about.
1louise1 More than 1 year ago
I love female detectives! This is an enchanting, exciting sleuth adventure that is done in four stories. I love the little lessons in life here and there in conversation." Don't blame others for things that you do!" Be who you are and stop complaining!" The caseloads take a backseat to female drama. This lovely, warm, endearing, charming novel is filled with colorful detail about life in Botswana. LOVELY! ENGAGING! I thoroughly enjoyed it and the whole series! Other favorites of mine are: PERFECT, EXPLOSION IN PARIS, RAINWATER and TEA TIME FOR TRADITIONALLY BUILT.
Fedmom More than 1 year ago
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency story continues to delight! Smith brings Botswana and his love for it to the reader with gentle compassion and I always look forward to the new adventures and wisdom from the maturing characters. Thanks!
ESSAnglophile More than 1 year ago
Alexander McCall Smith has provided his readers with another book in his No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. As usual, the plot is secondary to the characters and setting, and the readers learn more about Precious Ramotswe and Grace Makutsi, their lives, their friends and families, and Botswanan values. Precious takes on two cases, one to provide a gift to a kind safari guide from a grateful former client and the other about marital infidelity. Grace's fiance Phuti is gravely injured and, with Mma Ramotswe's invaluable help, she has to deal with his over-protective and over-possessive aunt. As usual, goodness and kindness prevail, and reading the book is an uplifting and happy pleasure.
HamburgerHelper More than 1 year ago
The "Double Comfort" in the book title couldn't be more appropriate. I always look forward to the next "The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency" books with great anticipation - and they never disappoint. It is like meeting up with old and beloved friends over a cup of tea (or coffee), sitting in front of a fireplace and talking of things both weighty and mundane, and just reveling in their company - and hoping in will go on forever. I look forward to the next visit of Precious, Mma Makutsi, Mr. J. L. B. Matekoni and the wonderful citizens of Botswana. I'll put the teakettle on and open my door.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love everything I've read by this author, but The Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency books are the best. They are so real. I spent a month in Gabs, once, and picture where he describes. He has the culture down pat. These books are anthropological as well as entertaing.
oldsewnsew More than 1 year ago
I absolutely love The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series, having already finished reading the first 6 books. I am looking forward to the release of this new addition. However, as much as I would like to purchase the ebook for my Nook, I cannot justify why the eBook is more expensive than the hardcover version! Sorry, but I'm going to pass on the purchase and wait until my public library gets in their ebook edition.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Smith has written a series of gentle bestsellers based in Botswana, where life is enjoyed most when sitting on the porch sipping red bush tea and watching people from the village stroll past. The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency in the books is run by Mma Ramotswe, a sensible woman of traditional size (translation - big woman), so no slinky, svelte types will be found between the pages, unless they happen to be up to no good. Makeup is more or less dismissed as unnecessary (or mostly for those women who are up to no good). Smith writes from his experience of living in Botswana and his descriptions of the countryside make the reader feel that looking for the hippos around the next bend of the river is the natural order of things, where going to the next town is a really big deal and making a 97 on a final exam is cause for endless celebrity. One of the cases in "The Double Comfort Safari Club" (released in April, 2010) involved an inheritance to be delivered to the correct person. Unfortunately, the resolution seemed to be an odd stretch and made me question whether I could ever really trust Mma Ramotswe's judgment. Perhaps it's a cultural disconnect, but I kept re-reading that section of the book to see if I had somehow misunderstood the issues surrounding the choices. With that exception, the book is pleasant, with ordinary office politics being handled by Mma Ramotswe as she works hard to point out the best features of her employees and acquaintances. Another case, involving a trusted employee whose fiancé has a tragic accident and afterward becomes virtually imprisoned by an aunt, is resolved rather deliciously, so my faith in Mme R. (and Smith) was redeemed. No shoot-outs, no car chases, just a gentle summer read about a woman with common sense and a knack of understanding the quirky bits of human nature.
Tarzanman More than 1 year ago
I've never met an Alexander McCall Smith book I didn't like...and this one is no exception. The characters and plot situations are very personal...and gave me much pause for reflection.
jm56 More than 1 year ago
Another wonderful book in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series. Precious, Grace, and the others make me think about a gentler way of life. The latest book is touching and entertaining. I may never get to visit Botswana, but these books make me feel like I've been there.
sarah-e on LibraryThing 3 days ago
Kindness is the central principle to Mma Ramotswe's philosophy, and to this story. This book had a calming effect on me. It can be so much fun to read a whole book in a day, and I couldn't put this one down - at the same time, I didn't want it to end. It's like vacation, to get to see the Okavango Delta with Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi; to see how we all can benefit from reminders to be kind and feel blessed with simple pleasures. I saved this book for a time when I thought I might need it, and when the time came I enjoyed it as much as the first in the series. It is very well known that people can make friends with books. By now this series and I are old friends.
seasidereader on LibraryThing 3 days ago
A weak entry in a very sweet series.
MarthaHuntley on LibraryThing 3 days ago
Looking at the other readers' reviews of this book, I saw they all seemed to be written by people familiar with and fond of the series of the #1 Ladies Detective Agency in Botswana. Reading the reviews, some people seem to be feeling a little jaded with the series, and said they did not enjoy this one as much as some of the others. I think that may be something that is within the reader. I always save Alexander McCall Smith's books to read for a time when I have read several serious, often dark, stories, mysteries, non fiction books. Then Precious Ramotswe and her family and friends, their mild adventures and their wisdom, come as a breath of fresh, cleansing air, delightful and almost purifying. I'm so grateful for this writer and his outlook on life and character(s)!
joanneblack on LibraryThing 3 days ago
These books are so sweet. Great for these troubled times.
etxgardener on LibraryThing 3 days ago
This is the 11th book in the No. 1 Ladies Detective series and once again, Precious Ramotswe is dealing with several of life's little mysteries and perplexities with her usual blend of humor, warmth and wisdom. This time she's looking for a safari guide who is due a legacy, pondering the marital relationship of a friend and her husband, trying to restore property to a man who has been swindled by the perfidious Violet Sephoto and finally helping Mma Makutsi deal with the very serious accident of her fiance Phuti Radiphuti.I love this series of books. Nothing very exciting happens, but the essential goodness of the characters shines from the pages and just makes me happy to have them in my library.
bearette24 on LibraryThing 3 days ago
I didn't think this was quite as good as the other books in the series, though the ending was redeeming. Here, Mma Ramotswe investigates a couple where each one accuses the other of cheating, and tries to find a safari guide so he can get his inheritance. Also, Mma Makutsi's fiance has an accident. The plot meandered for a while until the ending, where everything was nicely resolved.
pak6th on LibraryThing 3 days ago
Another delightful addition to the series on Mma Ramotswe and her No. I Ladies Detective Agency. Mma Makutsi, the Assistant Detective, finds herself in a difficult situation with her fiance, a midwife thinks her husband is having an affair, a man signs his house over to none other than Violet Sephotho, and an American lawyer needs to find the man who guided a safari. But all is sorted out in ways that may surprise us but are fully in keeping with Botswanan culture.
gsisson on LibraryThing 3 days ago
Charming, as always. Wisdom reigns through Precious, and her kindness is once again what wins in the end. Love this series.....
frisbeesage on LibraryThing 3 days ago
If you have enjoyed the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency in the past, The Double Comfort Safari will not disappoint. The usual cast of characters make appearances and its like catching up with old friends. Trouble comes for Mme Makutsi in the form of a rude and overbearing aunt, and an adventure is in store when the agency must go on safari to find a lucky guide set to inherit a windfall. Still, with the proper shoes and a dose of Mme Ramotswe's practical sense all problems can solved.Yes, the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency features unlikely mysteries, fortuitous coincidence, and neatly wrapped up endings. But you don't read them for the mystery, rather you read them for the comfort and solace of decent people doing the right thing, for the gentle humor, and the entertainment. Double Comfort Safari has all this in abundance with a safari adventure thrown in! I really enjoyed this book as I have enjoyed all of Mme Ramotswe's stories.
mamzel on LibraryThing 3 days ago
I don't know if I was in a lousy mood when I read this book or not, but it did not give me the enjoyment that the rest of the series has. I hope that Smith has not thinned himself out by writing for too many series. Maybe Mma Ramotswe has reached the end of the road. I still found it fun to read, I just didn't get the feeling, like from previous books, that I was slowly lowering myself in a warm bath to catch up with the events of old friends.
delphimo on LibraryThing 3 days ago
In the 11th installment of life in Botswana, Precious and Grace have many problems. Grace's fiance has an accident and undergoes an operation, only to have an aunt ruling his life. Precious must find a nameless safari guide and settle domestic problems for a friend. And of course, the problems of other people intrude in the story, but Precious always heeds the honorable past of Botswana's existence that depends on truth and honor. The story blends the pride and contentment of living in Botswana with little lessons of honor and loyalty.
isabelx on LibraryThing 3 days ago
Mma Ramotswe herself smiled at the recollection. ¿I went in at the shallow end,¿ she said. ¿It was not very deep, and I found that I could stand. But then I made a very interesting discovery.¿¿That you could swim?¿Mma Ramotswe shook her head. ¿No, I did not find that I could swim. I found, though, that I could float. I very slowly took the weight off my legs, and do you know, Mma, I floated. It was very pleasant. I did not have to move my arms-I just floated.¿Mma Makutsi clapped her hands. ¿That is very good, Mma! Well done! Perhaps it is something to do with being so traditionally built. A thin person would sink. You floated.¿¿Possibly,¿ said Mma Ramotswe. ¿But it was good to discover that I could do a sport after all.¿Mma Makutsi was not certain that floating could be called a sport. Was there a Botswana floating team? She thought not. What would such a team do? Would they have to float gently from one point to another, with the winner being the one who arrived first? Surely not.Mma Makutsi's fiancee Phuti ends up in hospital after being injured in an accident, and she is thwarted in her attempts to care for him by his over-protective aunt tries to keep her at arm's length. On the other hand, it was nice to see a very different part of Botswana when Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi travelled to a safari camp in the Okavango Delta in search of a beneficiary to a will. But overall this isn't one of my favourite books in this series.
Figgles on LibraryThing 3 days ago
The lives of Precious Ramotswe, her husband, friends and associates continue to follow the rythmns of the Botswanan seasons. Wisdom, humour and love help cope with tragedy and meanness. Again, more of the same, but very comforting...