The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

by Alexander McCall Smith | Mystery & Thrillers |
ISBN: 034911675x Global Overview for this book
Registered by loopy1 of Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on 8/16/2003
Buy from one of these Booksellers: | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon IT |
11 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Saturday, August 16, 2003
Another book bought after hearing about it at BC - and bought at a shopping trip with a fellow BC'er after my first meetup. Now I know why the official meetups are in the evenings, when the shops are shut :-)
I'm looking forward to reading this one, then I'll probably send it out on a ray.

Journal Entry 2 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Sunday, September 7, 2003
I haven't read the book yet, but already have a name for the ray:
first up is Robbiesmum.
Ray to be advertised in a week or so once I've had a chance to read it :-)

Journal Entry 3 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Monday, September 29, 2003
There are three words that jump to mind to describe this book - gentle, simple and restful.
No gory corpses, guns or car chases here. Just a very relaxed story of the first ladies' detective agency in Botswana. The style and the story go together well, to create a world where Mma Ramotswe sets up her detective agency and deals with matters such as missing family members and insurance swindlers.

Journal Entry 4 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Monday, September 29, 2003
This book is out on its journey:

Robbiesmum UK
Lucycat UK
thechinasourcer UK
weebly UK
MarianFrench UK
Starry-Starry UK
Kangaroo UK
tiggsybabes UK now has own copy
ferengie Europe pref now has own copy

BlackLilith Italy Internat. OK
viOlet Finland International OK
Jas330 Washington US pref
arugh48187 Minnesota US pref
raquelsita Wisconsin US pref.

Journal Entry 5 by loopy1 from Herne Bay, Kent United Kingdom on Tuesday, September 30, 2003
Posted to Robbiesmum today.

Journal Entry 6 by Robbiesmum from Thirsk, North Yorkshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, October 1, 2003
Thank you Loopy1! I was very cheeky as I PMed her about a possible Ray before she'd even read the book!
So here I am waiting for my new washing machine to be delivered and this gorgeous book just wanting to be read. I've kept picking up this book in shops and wondering if it's me - my grandma's sister and her husband lived and worked in Botswana for many years so I feel a historical link. 9Just to adda bit of interest to my journal entry!)

Journal Entry 7 by Robbiesmum from Thirsk, North Yorkshire United Kingdom on Tuesday, October 7, 2003
This would make a great tv series! I can hear the music and see that little white van coming down the dust track, see the characters at the garage, the hospital, the detective agency. This book reminded me of Heartbeat in Botswana - this will only be understood in the UK sadly but never mind. It's a gentle detective story with no gore, one bone, lots of amusing and interesting characters and familiar scenes but set in Botswana.
For me, the background led me into the story and grabbed me so I curled up and kept reading. The mysteries could have some more depth but I'm presuming this will happen in the next books.

An enjoyable read - I will read the others in the series but won't expect as much only disappointment as the cases are finished a little too easilyt. This detective agency needs a more difficult case.

Journal Entry 8 by YowlYY on Sunday, October 26, 2003
Ash on my head!!! I am really ashamed now!!! Went to add a small comment on what should have been my journal entry written on receipt of this book, and found out that I DIDN'T DO ANY!!!! I hope you all will forget my error...bad person, me!!
Anyway, amended my mistake now and only wanted to say that I am enjoying this tale so much... there is only a third of the book to go, so I may well finish it today and send it off on Monday to Lucycat... but before then, a thorough comment on the book will follow....

Journal Entry 9 by YowlYY on Friday, October 31, 2003
Very enjoyable story of Mma Precious Ramotswe and how she started the No.1 (and no doubt the first) Ladies' Detective Agency in Botswana. I loved the slow pace the writer takes us by the hand and shows us her surroundings, the past and the present of this gentle but very determined lady, and although there is no thrill and no real bad guys as in other mysteries, I had to struggle to put the book down as there were also other things to do (work is one of them!).
The mysteries that Mma. Ramotswe solves are easy cases, and she succeeds because she is a clever person with a lot of common sense. The felons turn out to be sometimes just victims of the circumstances who did not know better... and at the end of a successfully solved case, there's a cup of redbush tea or a cool beer for her, to be drunk sitting on the verandah, near the bougainvillaea, while listening to the sounds of the African night descending on the village.

I have now bought the follow-up to this volume, TEARS OF THE GIRAFFE, because I want to know what happens next with Mma. Ramotswe and his friend, the car mechanic Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni.... the book will be on its way to Lucycat soon...I may well go to Croydon this weekend, as I see that there is no postal strike there...

Journal Entry 10 by lucycat from Hull, East Yorkshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, November 5, 2003
Thanks so much Gabriella, for the lovely card and the bookmark too. I'm really looking forward to this...particularly as it's come by way of a few friends first!

Update 17/11/03

Gah, I just edited this to add my comments, and lost the lot when Explorer quit as I tried to save it!

Now I have to try and remember what I was saying...oh, okay. If at first you don't succeed, and all that...

Firstly! My apologies for not getting this one back on the road before's just been horribly wintry up here over the weekend and all I've wanted to do is curl up and read!

Secondly, what a lovely little book. Linda and Gabriella both described it as being 'restful', and that's exactly what it was, calming, quietly-written, and a welcome respite from the normal hullaballoo of my reading of late.

One to savour...possibly over a cup of redbush tea. What is redbush tea, exactly?? Answers on a postcard, please!

En route to Bren now...I hope you enjoy it as much as I did, and thanks again to Linda for sharing this little gem. x

P.S. Anyone else notice the oddly incongruous recommendation at the front of the book by none other than Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers? Boy oh boy, do I love that band...twelve years after I fell in love with them, they still never fail to amaze me. :O)

Journal Entry 11 by ChinaSourcer from Norwich, Norfolk United Kingdom on Thursday, November 20, 2003
Arrived in the post today, many thanks. Thanks too for the super bookmark.
I picked this book up one day in Ottakers and started to read it there, but didn't buy it at the time (I already had a handful to buy), so I'm looking forward to 'catching up' and finishing it.

Journal Entry 12 by ChinaSourcer from Norwich, Norfolk United Kingdom on Saturday, December 20, 2003
I loved this book, it was very gentle and easy to read. A most relaxing book, especially with a cup of Red Bush tea :)
As I said previously, I had started to read this when I picked it up (but didn't buy it) In Ottakers. The book lived up to its promise and I'm now looking forward to reading the next in the series.
Halfway through reading this I thought that it would make a good TV series and having just read the other journal entries I can see that Robbiesmum agrees with me! The authors descriptions and writing style are very evocative.
A lovely book, highly recommended. Thanks for sending this out Loopy.

Journal Entry 13 by weebly from Hartwell, Northamptonshire United Kingdom on Monday, December 22, 2003
Received today with Birthday Parcels for my Son's 8th Birthday - many thanks for the card and the tea too Bren !!

I am gonna start this book now as Internet connection up the swanee (using expensive dial up just to journal this) while son plugged in and not communicating with his new game boy advance sp!

26/12/2003 - The no1 Ladies Detective agency has proved a relaxing christmas read - just right for chilling and relaxing between disaterous goes on the dance mat at my parents house - except it took me a while to read one chapter while hubby and nephew had a go at the advanced dancing !

Contacted next recipient for address - so book will be travelling soon

Journal Entry 14 by MarianFrench from Buxton, Derbyshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, January 7, 2004
Hi there,
Book arrive safely a few days ago. Thank you for the tea bags (and book mark) - I am not sure where they originated. I will sample a couple and pass them on too. Will read and pass on as soon as I can and journal again then as well.

Journal Entry 15 by MarianFrench from Buxton, Derbyshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, February 4, 2004
Excellent book - I really enjoyed the simple, "nice" stories within the story. Very readable. I'll be posting on to Starry Starry asap. Thanks,


Journal Entry 16 by Starry-Starry from Llandrindod Wells, Wales United Kingdom on Tuesday, February 10, 2004
Received today - thanks very much MarianFrench and Loopy1. I have two rays here already, but I'm going to spend all my time reading :) and I'll get to as soon as I can, within two weeks I promise! Really looking forward to it as I've heard a lot about it.

Journal Entry 17 by Starry-Starry from Llandrindod Wells, Wales United Kingdom on Sunday, February 15, 2004
There isn't much I can say that hasn't already been said - but I'll try :-) I loved the gentle, slow-paced rhythm of this book and Mma Ramotswe is a great character - possibly unique among private detectives - a curious mixture of homey and adventurous. She solves her cases with a combination of common sense and nosiness about her neighbours with a little help from a manual written by Clovis Anderson. I loved the descriptions of Botswana, the heat, the simple houses with tin roofs and village life sounding so much like home!

It is pure escapism and it is fab. Will be looking out the next book and be recommending it to my family. I also enjoyed a cup of Red Bush tea which was very nice, though I don't know if it will convert me from my coffee - thanks Bren. Will pass the book and the tea on to kangaroo tomorrow, thanks Loopy1 for giving me a chance to read this.

Journal Entry 18 by kangaroo from Barnet, Greater London United Kingdom on Thursday, February 19, 2004
The fact that this came with tea simply gives yet more proof of what a wonderful bunch you are. Maybe time to put the kettle on and settle down..?

Journal Entry 19 by kangaroo from Barnet, Greater London United Kingdom on Thursday, April 1, 2004
Kangaroo's mum read this and here is what she has to say:

Refreshing and original, 'The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency', covers new ground and subject matter, conjuring up scenes from Africa experienced by 'real' African people, with 'real lives' as opposed to 'The English Patient' or Indiana Jones type adventures. Not that the adventures are any less exciting, just believable and in the hands of Africans for a change. A great and somehow reassuring read that needed writing. Generous and clever idea to end with the 1st chapter of the next book in the series: as a reader you are completely up to speed with the style and involved with the characters, this time you don't get the usual disappointment to reach the last page feeling.

Journal Entry 20 by kangaroo from Barnet, Greater London United Kingdom on Tuesday, April 13, 2004
Finally I'm sending this on. I'm so sorry to have taken forever with it, especially since it's an excellent book, nice and restful.
Should be in the post to Italy by tonight.

Journal Entry 21 by BlackLilith from Città di Castello, Umbria Italy on Friday, April 16, 2004
Just arrived (with a tasty surprise!) and added to my TBR pile. Thanks a lot!

Journal Entry 22 by BlackLilith from Città di Castello, Umbria Italy on Thursday, October 7, 2004
No time to read, a busy time in my soul and I keep it for a very long time. Sorry, please forgive me. It's ready to start again.

Journal Entry 23 by vi0let from Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Friday, October 22, 2004
Received this on Tuesday, thanks! To be read asap.

Journal Entry 24 by vi0let from Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Thursday, June 9, 2005
I'm dreadfully sorry for having kept this ring so long. The book's still safe, I just totally forgot about it.

I PMed Jas330 and arugh48187 yesterday but they both have read the book already. I'm waiting for raquelsita's answer.

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