Fresh, witty, engaging, clean and simple, endearing, and culturally enlightening. Very few modern novels match my literary ideals or interests, but I am truly putting some effort into expanding my reading lists in order to expand my world. The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency hit a spot that needed filled in my literary life. It was easy to read, illuminated a culture I am unfamiliar with, made me laugh, made me think and feel. In short, a perfect escape.
My reading list lately has been on the heavier side, emotionally or mentally, and I desperately needed something light but not fluffy. I picked up the second in the series, Tears of the Giraffe. I may have liked it even more than the first, and have purchased the third in the series to accompany me on my upcoming vacation. This is the first time in a great while that I have read more than one book in a series.
While the books do contain some mystery, they don't feel like traditional mystery novels. I most appreciated becoming acquainted with someone I would never have known otherwise, in a setting I should never experience otherwise. Precious Ramotswe, a traditional Botswana woman, is a delight to meet. After surviving a tragic marriage and the death of her beloved father, she pours all of her small inheritance into her own detective agency. The book touches on social issues, relationships, and life in a thoughtful and positive manner.