In the Company of Cheerful Ladies

8 / 10
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Retail Price (Hardback): £12.99
Retail Price (Softback): £5.99
Retail Price (Ebook):
ISBN: 9781904598060
First Published:

On the cover:
Precious Ramotswe, that cheerful private investigator of 'traditional' build is well know to mllions across the world through the best selling No.1 Ladies Detective Agency series.
Those who have been following her exploits in five previously published novels can now read the next instalmment, in which, as usual, circumstances are never quite as straighforward as they seem.

Precious Ramotswe is now married to Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors. The Agency is busy, but Mma Ramotswe cannot ignore the plea of a woman who comes to her with a tale of particular misfortune. Unfortunately, her attempts to help are interrupted by a close encounter between her tiny white van and a bicycle, and by a spectacular disagreement between her assitant, Mma Makutsi, and one of the apprentices at the garage. This apprentice has found a fancy gilrlfriend who drives a Mercedes-Benz. How can he be rescued from his folly? And, as for Mma Matkutsi, she has found a dancing class and a man who may not be able to dance very well but who admires her greatly. And all of this happens against a background of quiet sessions of bush tea, and a land that stretches out forever under mile upon mile of empty sky.


Your Opinions and Comments

8 / 10
I loved this book, not for any insights into crime,  procedural approaches to detection by for the interweaving of asides. By the time I got to the end of the story I had almost forgotten the the 'crimes' and almost felt the warm sunshine of Botswana and the gentle humour that pervades the entire book.

I enjoyed the formality of the names of the characters who were formal with each other!

The setting is in a country that changes slowly and the politeness of the recent past is still maintained. There are some similarities to out of the way places in rural England, where a broken plant pot knocked over by a teenager is taken as an early sign that gang warefare has broken out.

The asides were never one liners. One such aside, over one and a half pages, considered the role of shoes.

The nature of German mechanics and doctors were addressed.

Mms Makutsi ' with her large glasses' and her certificate proclaiming a 'ninety-seven per cent' pass at the Botswana Secretarial College was referred to on countless occasions.

I smiled whilst reading this throughout and enjoyed the gentle pace. I couldn't help comparing the style of the author to that of James Patterson, who fills his books with short chapters and much blank space, if only he had been able to read these books he may have been able to add some colour to his admittedly fast paced thrillers.
posted by David Shepherd on 13/2/2011 18:50