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The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency

Updated on September 17, 2014

Alexander McCall Smith' The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency in Botswana

The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency is the first book in a series that sets a storyline into Botswana and describes the principal characters. Mma Ramotswe, Mma Makutsi, Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni, Mma Potokwane will appear throughout the rest of the books in the series. They are imaginary characters but for one who knows Botswana, they could be very well real as they represent the core values and qualities of Batswana, the people living in this part of Southern Africa.

Alexander Mc Call Smith has an amazing understanding of the people of Botswana. His perspective is unique, his view is panoramic. He seems to observe his characters from a point of view that is moving all along together with them in their undertakings.

Batswana don't understand why the fuss. They think their own ways as something that its just is as it should be, nothing special.

The action itself seems like nothing extraordinary at first, it looks like flowing gently through issues of general importance. However, there would be situations coming up to test Mma Ramotswe's and even Mma Makutsi's intelligence, determination and courage in the face of unscrupulous people that should not exist in a country like Botswana. This belief is the support that makes the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency take up the fight against those darker elements in Botswana society and prove the good people that crime does not pay. Good people often can not see this clearly, so Mma Ramotswe's work and indeed Mma Makutsi's well meaning efforts too have a greater value than just the solving of one particular case or another.

In between detection, the characters of the book are getting involved in all kind of acts that show the underlying general nature of all Batswana: a sense of belonging to the community, the spirit of ubuntu, the unconditional love given to people, the belief in a better side that every human has, no matter how deep down.

Set in the little known African country of Botswana by the general public, along Mma Ramotswe are lined up stories that highlight the universal values of love, respect, tolerance, honesty. One reading the book will discover how easy it is to relate to people unknown in a country never been into.

Alexander Mc Call Smith tells the stories as if they would be beads of simple facts and actions, leaving the reader to draw theeeeir own feelings and helping the process by an apparent simplicity of the means of expression.

This simplicity is the choice of the author and is based on the confidence given by a genuine knowledge, understanding of the Botswana society and love for its people.

Humor and the fine texture of the book about the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency

book in botswana
book in botswana

One who knows Botswana can fully appreciate the humor all present, a good natured smile all over the pages, humor that makes the reading to be such an enjoyable experience. One who does not know Botswana, should take advantage of this opportunity and find out about it by reading the series. It will be time well spent and the reader will be left in a good mood and a smile on the face.

Traditional music from Botswana --the country of the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency - Tswana songs and Basarwa songs

Traditional music in Botswana goes together with the traditional dancing, as the sounds made by the feet of the dancers's when stepping hard are part of the music. Also, the string of dry seeds tied around the legs of the memebrs of a dancing group replace the drums which are not present in the tswana culture.As the dancers move, they clap in the rhythm of their song, which has a leading voice supported by a chorus.

The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency -- in Botswana, the country of the "Gods must have been crazy": - the adaptation for Tv series - see it rather than read it!

The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency: Season 1
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency: Season 1

It brings the stories together and it makes easy and enjoyable viewing of them all.


The movie of the No 1 ladies Detective Agency

Jill Scott as Mma Ramotswe leading the story in Botswana

The hugely popular series of books about Mma Ramotswe and the No 1 ladies Detective Agency made it into a movie series.

"I find it impossible to think about these novels without smiling." - Craig Brown, Mail on Sunday

The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency in Botswana - Trailer, the making of the movie, teasers

Have a look at the videos about Mma Ramotswe, Botswana and the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency. People in the movie are like people are in Botswana -- fine, warm and natural. The success of the books describing the daily exploits of Mma Ramotswe, the No 1 lady detective from Botswana prompted the project of making this series. It is not in all cases that the movie following a book has the same qualities -- but certainly Mma Ramotswe is one example when movie and books all come together to celebrate the same: a subject matter of a rare insight into the simple yet charming ways of life in little known African country and the talents of all those that brought the story to light.

The series of books featuring Mma Ramotswe

and many of the others, serial characters

1.The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

2.Tears of the Giraffe

3.Morality for Beautiful Girls

4.The Kalahari Typing School for Men

5.The Full Cupboard of Life

6.In the Company of Cheerful Ladies

7.Blue Shoes and Happiness

8.The Good Husband of Zebra Drive

9.The Miracle at Speedy Motors

10.Tea Time for the Traditionally Built

11.The Double Comfort Safari Club

12.The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party

Reviews of The No 1 ladies Detective Agency series

by Alexander McCall Smith

Find out more about the series of The No 1 ladies Detective Agency. Reading reviews is only a glimpse into the charm of these short novels -- but you might decide to try one. After that the rest will come naturally -- reading the books and looking to find the movie, if you ever have been in Africa, you'll love them all, the No 1 Detective stories with Mma Ramotswe! If you have not been in Africa, you might love them as well.

Life's true temptations

Mma Ramotswe sighed. 'We are all tempted, Mma. We are all tempted when it comes to cake.'

That is true,' said Mma Potokwane sadly. 'There are many temptations in this life, but cake is probably one of the biggest of them."

— Alexander McCall Smith (In the Company of Cheerful Ladies)


Sales of books from this page will provide for a donation to charities of your choice

If you buy any of the books recommended above, this page automatically makes a donation to the incredible nonprofit, Donors Choose, which helps provide classrooms and students in need with resources that our public schools often lack.

When mind and heart comes together we all can live in the spirit of ubuntu.

Just like people in the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency!


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