The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection

The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection

Book rating: 05 Paperback No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency

By (author) Alexander McCall Smith

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  • Publisher: Abacus
  • Format: Paperback | 272 pages
  • Dimensions: 126mm x 196mm x 22mm | 220g
  • Publication date: 14 March 2013
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0349123152
  • ISBN 13: 9780349123158
  • Sales rank: 2,402

Product description

Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi have always relied on the advice of the classic guide to their trade, The Principles of Private Detection. But who is the eminent author, Mr Clovis Andersen, and what if he were to come to Botswana? That seems a very unlikely possibility, and yet ...When Mr Andersen visits Botswana on holiday, he is delighted and intrigued to stumble across a roadside sign that reveals the existence of the No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency. Professional courtesy suggests that he call and announce himself. Meanwhile, Mma Makutsi and Phuti Radiphuti are embarking on married life and building a new house - a tricky business under any circumstances but especially hazardous when the name of the contractor is the Joy and Light Building Company.

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Author information

Following a distinguished career as a Professor of Medical Law, Alexander McCall Smith has turned to writing full-time. He is the author of over sixty books on a wide array of subjects, and his books have been translated into forty-six languages. He lives in Edinburgh with his wife.

Customer reviews

By Marianne Vincent 01 Jun 2013 5

The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection is the thirteenth in the Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency series by Alexander McCall Smith. In this instalment, Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi find themselves investigating not for clients, but rather, for themselves and their friends. Precious and Grace are delighted to find that Clovis Anderson, author of their much-consulted bible, The Principles of Private Detection, is visiting Botswana and decides to stop in for a chat. Precious uses the opportunity to get his advice on a troubling situation affecting her dear friend, Matron of the Orphan Farm, Mma Potokwani. It seems the Orphanage Board has decided to institute changes which Mma Potokwani feels will be detrimental to the orphans, and her dissension is to cost her her job. In an uncharacteristic move, the usually forthright matron retreats to her lands: is this the end for Mma Potokwani? Fanwell, the irreproachable apprentice at Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors, reluctantly agrees to help an old acquaintance and finds this decision has unforeseen serious consequences. While Mr J.L.B. Matekoni and Mma Ramotswe give him their full support, a surprisingly resourceful Charlie demonstrates unexpected loyalty and comes to the rescue. And newlyweds, Grace and Phuti, find that building a house can be complicated, especially when the builder is not completely honest. As always, the lives of our favourite Gabarone residents keep the reader engrossed; their dialogue, especially that of Mma Makutsi (and her shoes!) provide many light moments; the courtroom scene is pure farce; we discover the origin of Grace's obsession with shoes; we learn more about Fanwell's background; Grace's musings on physical and mental comfort are worth consideration, as is the concept of the guilt-free sofa; Mma Ramotswe's inner monologue is full of gentle philosophy and it was a lovely surprise for the reader to meet the much-quoted (and apparently very human) Clovis Anderson. Another delightful novel.

By Kimberly Roy 19 Aug 2012 5

I first started reading the No. 1 Ladies' Detective back in the summer of 2010, shortly after the HBO show of the same name aired on television. A lot of you already know that I have a wee obsession with all things Africa so this series is my little escape to Botswana when I read it.


When I read this back in June, it had been a whole year since I had opened one of the books in this series and I was starting to miss Mma Ramotswe and the other colourful characters that Alexander McCall Smith so artfully writes into his novels.


When ever I read the series I feel like I'm coming home and this novel was no different from the others in that aspect. For me, I have certain authors that I resort to reading when I'm in a certain mood and when I read this one I needed a good old fashioned comfort read.


In this latest installment in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency we are once again brought into the comforting embrace of Mma Ramotswe. In this book I got to meet up with my old friends Mma Makutsi, Phuti Radiphuti, Rra Matekoni and his faithful assistants at the garage he owns as well as being introduced to Mma Ramotswe's hero Clovis Anderson.


I know many people say that these books shouldn't be classed as mysteries because the "case" Mma Ramotswe solves are often pretty trivial but for me I just love the feeling these novels give me. This time around the mystery was close to home as one of Rra Matekoni's assistants is put in a delicate situation in which Mma Ramotswe, Mma Makutsi and and Clovis Anderson get on the case and try to rescue him!


This one turned out to be even better than the previous book in the series which surprised me because I thought the series had peaked at the time I read the last one so I was pleasantly surprised to find that that was not the case. This one still had the homey feeling that all the novels have but it was nice to see the different characters backstories evolve because less face it after a certain amount of books in a series things can become a little stagnant. For me this one actually turned out to be the best book in the series (besides the first one) in my opinion and was certainly the most enjoyable. I can't wait to read the next book.


I think the direction the author has taken with the book is one that readers will like. At least I hope other do because I really did. If you haven't read the series and want a unique reading experience I highly suggest reading this series.
*I revieved a copy of this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my FREE and HONEST review. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and I was in no way compensated for my review.

Review quote

Praise for "The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection" and Alexander McCall Smith: "Fans of the series will find much to enjoy.... It is all but impossible to criticise this novel." "The Guardian""To say McCall Smith is a literary phenomenon doesn't quite describe what has happened. He has become more of a movement, a worldwide club for the dissemination of gentle wisdom and good cheer." "The Telegraph""McCall Smith has few peers in capturing the quiet moments of people's lives, and his empathetic lead has one of the biggest hearts in modern literature." "Publishers Weekly""The gentle and telling portrait of the human condition lingers [after reading]." "Star Tribune" (Minneapolis)