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The Miracle At Speedy Motors (The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency) Hardcover – 3 Mar 2008
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The books possess a beguiling simplicity that is hard to convey without making them seem fey, when in fact they are direct, vivid and down-to-earth ... what he achieves in his No.1 Ladies (Detective Agency novels is the depiction in the lives of his main characters of a benign system of morality - derived by Mma Ramotswe from the old-fashioned ways of doing things')
DAILY TELEGRAPH ('Nothing spoils [McCall Smith's] vision of Botswana as a place where decent people triumph over mischief-makers')
SUNDAY TIMES (** 'The writing is as fluent and gracious as ever, and charmingly conveys the practical wisdom of much of African life')
SUNDAY TELEGRAPH (** 'Written with the gentleness of its predecessors and with a charm that is quite exceptional in modern detective fiction')
* The ninth book in the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series; Little, Brown are publishing in hardbackSee all Product description
Top customer reviews
With touches of understated comic irony, this series are just a delightful light-hearted read. Watch out for the moral elements - Mma Ramotswe spends a lot of her time philosophising on life, and the good old days in particular when morals were better, young people were more polite, there was more respect in society and, of course, there were more 'traditionally built' women too!... but her moments of reflection just add to the charm of this series!
In 'The Miracle at Speedy Motors', Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi (newly promoted to 'Associate' Detective (!) have some detective work to deal with, including a nasty piece of malicious mail and a lady who has requested that the detectives find her some relatives... Mr J.L.B. Matekoni is hoping for a miracle; Mma Makutsi has some life crises of her own; Will Mma Makutsi and young Charlie, the apprentice finally see eye-to-eye?!; and we hear a bit more about Mma Ramotswe and Mr J. L. B. Matekoni's fostered children, Motholeli and Puso, in this book too. All-in-all you'll find here a few delightful hours of pure light-hearted entertainment.
In "The Miracle at Speedy Motors" Mma Ramotswe, her associate detective Mma Makutsi and their occasional assistants deal with threatening letters, missing relatives and the good and bad consequences of the rainy season. Answering hatred with love is one of the themes that McCall Smith explores in the book. Initial results are mixed, but in the end Mma Ramotswe and McCall Smith convince us that it is a better strategy than the normal one. The miracles achieved are not the big one hoped for, but they make a difference all the same.
This is a gentle, life-affirming commentary on the human condition, written in a light and entertaining way. It's not crime fiction, it's not a thriller, but this book, the others in the series and indeed those other of McCall Smith's books that I have read are a welcome break from faster paced, or more overtly serious, reading. If you haven't read it yet, give it a try (though I'd start with the first in the series). If you have, then this is as good as any. Thoroughly recommended.