No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency...

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Apr 24th, 2005, 03:05 PM
  #1
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No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency...

I mentioned this novel in another thread (or two?), but I've got to put in a special plug for it. (I'm enjoying it more and more the further I get.) If you're going to Botswana (or even if you're not!), this is a GREAT read - a delightful, light, warm, sometimes funny story set in Gabarone. I strongly recommend it!
Karen
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Apr 24th, 2005, 04:05 PM
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I agree with Karen. The stories about Precious Ramotswe are great. Be aware that there is more than one book about this lady detective in Botswana. (At this stage I think there are 6 books altogether)

Last week the visitors whom I toured with came from Naples-Florida and they were drinking Rooibos tea long before they came to SA. Why? In the detective agency novels Precious drinks Rooibos all the time so after reading the books my visitors tried Rooibos in the USA and got hooked on the beverage.

All in all a great read not to be missed especially if you are going to visit Botswana. Enjoy.

Very proudly part of the wonderful nation of South Africa
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Apr 24th, 2005, 04:12 PM
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I love this series, too, by Alexander McCall Smith. In fact, there's a new book just out, In The Company of Cheerful Ladies. So all of us Precious Remotswe fans have something we can get our hands on right now.
Don't you think it would be a great thing if someone would put together a Botswana itinerary which would concentrate on Precious's world or at least include it in connection with a total Botswana package? Were I in a position to do that, I certainly would. I think the spaces available for such an adventure would soon fill up. Anybody out there with the time and the means to take this on? There are tons of us Precious fans out here.
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Apr 25th, 2005, 03:56 AM
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I haven't gotten to the book yet... it's on my list of "must reads" - but I'm hooked on the Rooibos tea. And I'm not normally a tea drinker.

Rooibos became available in the States about 3+ years ago... first in health-food stores. Now it's availale in many, if not most, supermarkets... sold under the Rooibos or Kalahari name, both distributed by the same manufacturer. A great South African export.
 
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Apr 25th, 2005, 04:51 AM
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Just finished the fifth book - they are a great read. They can be purchased at Costco stores.
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Apr 25th, 2005, 07:23 AM
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"In the Company of Cheerful Ladies" The latest book is out tomorrow! Hardcover -only for a while though.

They are great stories. He also has a good book of collected African stories: "The Girl Who Married a Lion"

Also, the tea is great! Having a cup takes me back to Africa, if only for a moment.
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Apr 25th, 2005, 07:34 AM
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I should have said, "my Barnes and Noble gets it tomorrow". I think it came out last week in the US.
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Apr 25th, 2005, 09:08 AM
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I too have throughly enjoyed this series of delightful reads. In the course of the series have also become addicted to Rooibos tea and sip it 2-3 times a day.
The author will be in Portland on Wednesday for a lecture at a local book store which I am planning to attend of course! Hope they'll be serving bush tea...
Brenda
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Apr 25th, 2005, 10:59 AM
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I was hooked on these books the moment I read them... which took me longer than it should have after several recommendations on this board some time back. Infact it wasn't until the third book had recently come out that I finally bought a set of the series so far. Since then I've eagerly read each new chapter though I've been remiss in getting my hands on the latest one and have been anticipating it for a long while now.

It's such a refreshing change to read a book where the stories and intrigues are incidental and the characters reign supreme...
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Apr 25th, 2005, 05:42 PM
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OH MY GOSH! I am SO glad I posted this. Would you believe I didn't realize it was a series and there were more Precious books out there? YAY!!!

Karen
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Apr 26th, 2005, 12:49 AM
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Karen, what a wonderful discovery for you... I can guess what your latest purchases have been/ are about to be... happy reading!
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Apr 27th, 2005, 08:21 AM
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I am a HUGE Mma Ramotswe fan. I own all of the books including In the Company of Cheerful Ladies. Each and every one is charming.

May I also recommend that if you love the books, listen to them on tape. The reader is a South African woman named Lisette Lecat and she is terrific. Every character comes to life. I have never enjoyed the commute to work as much as I have lately. Thanks Mma Ramotswe!

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Apr 27th, 2005, 10:06 AM
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one2travel - Great advice. I've listened to several of the books on CD and it makes the car trip fly by. As an added benefit, I now know how to pronounce some of the names, words, and places in the books!
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Apr 27th, 2005, 11:27 AM
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I read the book this weekend and enjoyed it very much. Can't wait to work my way through the series.

This is probably a stupid question ... but I didn't know what the "Mma." stood for. Is that like Ms?
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Apr 27th, 2005, 12:18 PM
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I love these books too!!! I just finished the last one and need to go buy 'In the Company of Cheerful Ladies'.
It certainly makes me want to go to Botswana and sip Bush Tea! Someone had metioned a 'Precious'tour of Botswana...that would be great. I'm always imagining everyone in the book...
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Apr 27th, 2005, 12:30 PM
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"Mma" is more like "Madam / Ma'am". "Rra" is "Sir".

So "Dumela Mma" would be "Good day Ma'am" in the Setswana language.

Another vote for these books from me.
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Apr 30th, 2005, 11:34 PM
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I read the first book while on safari in Botswana - what a treat. Selwyn, I believe bush tea became available in the states about the time Smith's books were becoming more known. I didn't know this and I was rushing to the plane home in the Jo'burg airport and didn't have time to look for a package of bush tea to buy. A lady sitting in front of me overheard me and insisted on giving me hers (she was South African and on vacation in the states). She was the kindest person, not taking no for an answer. I was very grateful. When I got home, I noticed that my local health food store had 4 different brands of Rooibos!
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Jun 30th, 2005, 07:23 PM
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I found a Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency Tour. Here's the link: africainsight.com
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 04:03 PM
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I knew it was only a matter of time before someone began giving tours based on these wonderful books. I think the latest, "In the Company of Cheerful Ladies" is the best. I have had the good fortune to hear the author and meet him on two occasions when he visited Barnes and Noble in NYC. He's charming, funny, approachable and and in all just delightful. I have read his other books as well and although I enjoyed them, they did not enchant me as the ones about the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency. I have been to Africa twice, but these books have made me want to go back. Getting ready to leave for vacation in Japan and am so sorry I don't have one of these books to take along. Lorraine
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Jul 3rd, 2005, 07:52 PM
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Alexander McCall Smith belongs to an orchestra called the RTO (I believe) --Really Terrible Orchestra. He says that playing in an orchestra makes you better - not necessarily a better musician, just better. I love that idea. My goal for the next few years is to take clarinet lessons and join a really bad orchestra, which I am told abound in my city. I quite enjoyed the latest book in this series. I hope there is another before my visit to Gabarone next June!
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