Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Storms In The Teapot

And now on to the main (or more interesting I think) event - yet another AMS.  He must be the most prolific author on this blog - of this series alone, The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency, I've reviewed one a year since I started, so I think I'm up to my third already.  But I'm not going to go back and read old ones, so you'll get this on its own merits only :) Anyway, what I love about this series is the amazing sense of peacefulness and well-being they manage to convey, no matter what's going on.  That's accomplished largely by keeping the personal issues of the main characters somewhat on the DL and never in too dire straights.  But that does sometimes result in a *bit* of plodding, where it takes a while for me to get into the rhythm of the book.

So The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection was actually somewhat of a departure from this.  A departure in that personal issues really took front and center - and they mattered.  I suppose Mma Potokwane's orphanage isn't really directly related to the mains, but Mma Ramotswe certainly feels her pain sharply enough.  And of course Fanwell's trials and the suspicious circumstances of Mma Makutsi's house are closer still.  So the mood is just a little more... I don't know dark, but definitely more serious than usual.   With that still, we know everything is going to be alright (well we know that, because AMS was not about to write a tragedy) - but we *feel* it's going to be alright too.  Maybe that's because the book is actually fast-paced enough to deal with all this in pretty swift fashion.  In fact, it almost feels at times like a a real detective story :) In the way the action moves along and clues are discovered.  But don't worry, not too much action, at least I didn't feel that way.

So some of the charm of the earlier books wasn't quite as present here as usual. And I'm not sure I'd be a fan of many books in a row where all this happened.  But certainly, it was a good read this one time.  And Clovis Andersen's appearance was definitely an added bonus! All in all, all remains good in Botswana.  Not bad for number, was is it? 11? 12?, AMS.

Verdict: 3.75/5

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