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Publisher's Summary

New York Times best-selling author Alexander McCall Smith, creator of the beloved No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency novels, crafts the second irresistible installment in his Scotland Street series. Espresso Tales follows the charming and immensely popular 44 Scotland Street as all the favorite residents of that Edinburgh address return. Between glances in the mirror, vain Bruce contemplates a new career as a wine merchant. His troubled flatmate, Pat, finds himself looking for true love at a nudist picnic. Precocious Bertie, now six years old, prepares for kindergarten despite the horror of being forced to wear pink overalls. Meanwhile, his domineering mother, Irene, and his psychologist, Dr. Fairbarn, struggle with dark secrets as Bertie plots his rebellion against them.
It's business as usual in the Georgian townhouse at 44 Scotland Street, and McCall Smith's innumerable fans wouldn't have it any other way.
©2005 Alexander McCall Smith (P)2006 Record Books LLC
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Critic Reviews

"McCall Smith's pacing is impeccable." (Publishers Weekly)
"Robert Ian Mackenzie's impeccable take on the characters reveals their trials, tribulations, blind spots, and charms." (AudioFile)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Dorothea on 01-15-07

Brilliant, as usual.

This sequel to 44 Scotland Street (please read/listen to them in order) is a pleasure. The narration, the observations and gentle social satire are superb. As one would expect, the book is completely character-driven--and one truly cares about these people (well, most of them, anyway---some are delightfully contemptible.)

This is everything an audio book should be. I received the paperback as a gift, and held off
reading it (with difficulty) until the audio was released.


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16 of 16 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Laurie Ann Muller on 05-31-15

Please fix the editing of this book.

What made the experience of listening to Espresso Tales the most enjoyable?

Narrator is fantastic. Stories continue to be fabulous. When only 12 minutes were left in the book, I had to go get the next one because I can't bear not to know what's going to happen to these people next! This one has some top-notch cliffhangers.

What did you like best about this story?

The story? Absolutely nothing. I'm sure people wondered why I would suddenly laugh out loud for seemingly no reason. Other parts of the story made me express epithets. All in all, this series should not be missed.

Have you listened to any of Robert Ian Mackenzie’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I don't think so, but I'll definitely be more inclined to buy a book if I see he's the narrator.

If you could take any character from Espresso Tales out to dinner, who would it be and why?

Cyril. I guess Angus Lordie (sp.?) would have to come along, too. Or Dominica. Everyone's just so interesting, it's hard to choose.

Any additional comments?

My main reason for this review is the terrible editing problem, which I note another reviewer mentioned. The way the book is put together, some chapters start even before Mackenzie has finished uttering the last word of the previous chapter. In some cases, the number of the chapter fits the final word of the previous chapter so well that it's very confusing (the start of chapter 99 comes to mind). This happens with about half the chapters. In other cases, a suitable pause is taken between the end of a chapter and the beginning of the next.

This is the only thing marring a truly enjoyable experience with a truly stellar book.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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