26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Is Alexander McCall Smith getting bored with the series?,
This review is from: The Lost Art Of Gratitude (Isabel Dalhousie 6) (Hardcover)The Lost Art of Gratitude is the 6th novel in the "Sunday Philosophy Club" series by Alexander McCall Smith, which centre on philosopher and occasional amateur sleuth Isabel Dalhousie. The book picks up only 2-3 months after "The Comfort of Saturdays" - Isabel and Jamie's son Charlie now being 18 months old.
If you've read the other books in the series you'll know that they feature an assortment of storylines, most of which seem to take a backseat to Isabel's musings on everyday matters. This book is no different. Minty Auchterlonie asks Isabel to help her with a troublesome problem, Isabel's niece Cat has a new and unsuitable fiance, Brother Fox is injured and needs medical attention and Christopher Dove is scheming to force Isabel to resign as editor of the Review of Applied Ethics.
I truly love this series, but I was so disappointed by this book which felt like it was written "by numbers". One of the things that I like most is Isabel's musings on life and ethics. However this time round they felt forced: formulaic rather than intriguing. Also, McCall Smith seemed to have only limited interest in the plotlines. Cat's relationship felt like it was tucked in as an afterthought ("must involve Cat - oh let's give her another problematic boyfriend and we can just wrap it up by Isabel hearing about what happened"). The Minty storyline was given more prominence but then again it felt like he got bored with it in the end.
If you've loved this series as I do, you should still read the book - while disappointing, it's not completely dreadful. However I'd wait for the paperback. If you're new to the series, don't start here! Start with "The Sunday Philosophy Club". It's a series best read in order.
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Initial post: 28 Jun 2013 18:48:12 BDT
kooky ju says:
I love the series but like you was disappointed with this one. At times Isabelle quite irritated me with the way she believed Minty then believed the her ex-lover, then Minty said he was lying and she believed Minty again - can someone be so naïve?
In reply to an earlier post on 15 Jul 2013 10:32:52 BDT
Last edited by the author on 15 Jul 2013 10:35:00 BDT
Madeleine C-W says:
I have all the books in the series and have just finished this one; I didn't enjoy it as much as the others so hope the next one, The charming quirks of others is an improvement (when I read it in a month or so's time) - I've spaced out the reading of the books in the series and enjoy them for their charm and gentleness
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