source for free and affordable eBooks


Powered by FreeFind

Site search
Web search

    Review of BLUE SHOES AND HAPPINESS by Alexander McCall Smith


    Pantheon Books, April 2006

    Mma Ramotswe and her assistant, Mma Makutsi continue to run the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency in Botswanna (Africa). They have a number of normal jobs now, but both Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi seem to prefer the jobs where they help people. And a number of strange cases keep coming in. There's something strange going on at the game preserve. A cook fears losing her job when she learns that her boss is feeding the bosses husband with University-paid food. A nurse wonders why her doctor has altered his records. A newspaper advice column seems to give advice that is a bit too abrupt. And an employee has been unjustly jailed and now his uncle refuses to treat him like his other nephews.

    Meanwhile, both Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi have full lives. Mma Ramotswe is now married to Mr J.L.B. Matekoni and Mma Makutsi is engaged to Mr Phuti Radiphuti. Still, all is not perfect. Mma Ramotswe has begun to wonder whether her "traditional" figure might not be a bit too traditional--whether, in fact, she needs to go on a diet. And when Mr Phuti Radiphuti wonders whether Mma Makutsi is a feminist, her answer (of course) seems to frighten him. Will he call off the engagement.

    Author Alexander McCall Smith (see more reviews of novels by Smith) continues his No. 1 Ladies' Detective series with a pleasant look at Smith's dreamy Africa. Although Smith doesn't hide from the realities of modern Africa (the Aids epidemic continues to leave millions of orphans each year, drough is an ever-present concern, and a new pair of shoes or a new chair a luxury even for the employed and affluent), BLUE SHOES AND HAPPINESS, like the other books in the series, preserves a fairy-tale quality. Yes, blackmail, adultery, and thievery are common, but there are never any threats to peoples' lives, no danger of murder--not beyond what an errant snake or a possible curse might create, at any rate.

    BLUE SHOES AND HAPPINESS is an enjoyable and funny, if lightweight, read. Fans of the series will definitely want to add this one to their to-be-read list.

    Three Stars

    Reviewed 9/08/06

    Ready to buy it now? Click the buy now button.

    Visit to read more reviews or to purchase BLUE SHOES AND HAPPINESS from

    Rather buy it from Barnes and Noble?
    Click this link for BLUE SHOES AND HAPPINESS from Barnes &

    Buy the eBook version from

    What do you think? Too generous? Too stingy? Or did I miss the entire point? Send your comments to Give me the okay to use your name and I'll publish all the comments that fit (and don't use unprintable language).

    Check out the Alexa toolbar. It blocks pop-ups (you get to choose), it's free, and it tells you about what websites are popular and who owns them.