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The House of Unexpected Sisters
The No1 Ladies Detective Agency – Book XXVIII
Alexander McCall Smith

Little, Brown
7 September 2017/ ISBN 9781408708149

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde

Part time member of the team Mr Polopetsi has a request: can the detectives help a certain Charity Mompoloki? The lady is a widow with children who has been unfairly dismissed from her much needed job at a local office furniture store. Her boss says that she was very rude to a valuable customer, but was she, or is there another reason? Charity’s mother has a mysterious photograph to show Mma Ramotswe, and Mma Potokwani has disquieting news.

I know I have said it before, but I really do feel that these books ought to be available on prescription. They do seem to be an antidote to all that is wrong with the world today, and if Botswana is truly like this, it must be a great country! Mma Ramotswe’s appreciation for good manners, friendship, the simple joys of life and her common sense shine out like a beacon and remind the reader that all is not lost if there are people like her. This time the problems she faces hit close to home as she has to come to terms with some family revelations, face off possible disaster for an employee, and solve a mystery for another employee. There is time for enjoying a slice of cake or a cup of bush tea, musing over how cattle have shaped Botswana through the years, and reflecting on the ties of family. If you haven’t read one of these before, this might all sound rather dull, but believe me it is anything but. You will have to start at the beginning to appreciate this special and bestselling series (The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency) but once started, you will soon see what all the fuss is about. There are lots of long running series, but very few have managed to be as consistently satisfying as this one. A treat not to be missed.

Reviews of other titles in this series

Blue Shoes and Happiness, #7
The Good Husband of Zebra Drive, #8
The Miracle at Speedy Motors, #9
Tea Time For The Traditionally Built, #10
The Double Comfort Safari Club, #11
The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party, #12
The Minor Adjustment Beauty Salon #14
The Handsome Man’s DeLuxe Café #15
The Woman Who Walked In Sunshine #16
Precious and Grace #17
The House of Unexpected Sisters #18
The Colours of all the Cattle #19

Reviewed 2017