Port De Soller Mallorca

Port De Soller Mallorca

Monday, 18 November 2013

Book Review: The Minor Adjustment Beauty Salon by Alexander McCall Smith

If you have not read Mr McCall Smith, why not? He writes gentle humorous stories filled with a cast of star studied characters who seemingly make the the most innocuous comments on life but at the same time can be so thought provoking.  Homilies of a bygone time when respect for our, families, friends, fellow man and neighbours was once upper most in our minds .....  and he reminds of us those times in a modern day setting with Mma Ramotswe in Botswana.

The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency is in a state of flux as 'associate' Detective Mma Makutsi takes maternity leave to have her and her husband Phuti Radiphuti's first child, mind you, as usual when Mma Makutsi doesn't want to discuss something, she won't and so the fact that she is pregnant and the subject of maternity leave are not open for discussion until it is to late, not to late in that something goes wrong except for the fact that another encounter with a cobra brings the pregnancy to an end and the delivery of a healthy boy is announced.  So snakes do come in useful, sometimes, and this again proves to be the case in dealing with a Radiphuti aunt later on, so funny .....

Mr J.L.B. Matekoni, husband to Mma Ramotswe and owner of Speedy Motors on Tlokwen  Road, has a desire to become a more modern husband and enrols in a new course at the university and then Mma Ramotswe finds him, for the first time ever, helping to prepare dinner, but she is gentle with him in explaining,

"So you are mashing them now?’ He nodded. ‘And it’s rather hard work, Mma.’ ‘You’re mashing them even before you have cooked them, Rra?’ He frowned. ‘You cook them first?’ Mma Ramotswe reached around him and took the pan from his hands. It was half-filled with water in which fragments of raw potato floated morosely, like a soup. Very gently she poured the mixture down the drain. ‘I will show you how to start with new ones,’ she said. ‘You cook the potatoes first and then you take them out and mash them up with butter and salt. That is how mashed potatoes are made, Rra.’ He turned away sheepishly. ‘I was only trying to help, Mma.’ She felt a warm rush of affection for the man beside her. ‘But of course you were, Rra. But I am quite happy to cook mashed potatoes."

In the background of course there are two cases to be solved as business still has to continue even without the assistance of the Associate Detective and Mr JLB Matekoni's lack of cooking skills, but he is still an excellent mechanic...

These books are for anyone who wants a gentle meander through the countryside surrounding the city of Gaberone in the wonderful country of Botswana or so it appears to be from the descriptions in these books, waiting on the rains to revive the country and it's people's, dealing with the serious and the not so serious.

For the first time in reading though I have only two small criticisms; 1. We don't get to read the outcome of the case with Mma Sheba the Lawyer, although we know what Mma Ramotswe wants to do, it is left somewhat unresolved, and 2. how did the cooking of the sausages go with Mr J.L.B. Matekoni?

Editing for Kindle: 5 out 5
Reading Enjoyment: 5 out of 5
Plot: 5 out of 5
Overall Rating: 5 out of 5
Chapters: 17
Page length: 256


  1. Oh! I love his books! I adore his characters! So sweet and funny and tidy and no-nonsense. Just pure story.


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