Friday, March 3, 2017
Review of Tears of the Giraffe by Alexander McCall Smith (2002, Anchor)
Tears of the Giraffe is the second book in the No 1. Ladies Detective Agency series following the exploits of Precious Ramotswe. The tale is written very much in the tradition of a cozy, with a gentle charm and humour, with the storyline as much about the everyday lives of the protagonists as about the solving of crimes. The real strength of the story are the lead characters of Precious and her husband-to-be, Mr J. L. B. Matekoni, a garage owner, who leap off the page as engaging, delightful folk. There is some nice, light reflections on moral philosophy stirred in and a dose of intrigue concerning a scheming maid, a wayward wife, and a long-missing American. The plotlines around the intrigue, however, are somewhat thin and underdeveloped, with Precious solving one through some fairly weak plot devices, one halting abruptly, and the other being quite simple in nature. That said, the charm of the book are the characters, their interactions, and the sense of place. An enjoyable, feel-good read.