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I have always thought of Alexander McCall Smith as his character, Angus Lordy, the portrait painter. In this book he paints his best, most emotional, most believable portraits. Bertie is one of the greatest characters I have ever read - a remarkable and tragic figure in a great comedy. But, if Bertie were the only portrait, that wouldn't explain the vast depth of character and feeling in this book.
Because it was published first as a serial, each chapter can be listened to independently, and there is a little punch line every 5 minutes or so to keep you going.
I think Alexander McCall Smith is a modern Charles Dickens. He is prolific. He writes serials. Most importantly, he is underrated for his time. I think people dismiss him as less than great art because his outlook is generally clean, positive and life-affirming, and he is fun to read. So what? Let the stuffies have their melancholy books. This one is great.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful
I have listened to all of Alexander McCall Smith's books and this has some of the best scenes of all of them. I thought the book started off a bit slow but after a while some of the scenes that came up are classics. Wait until you get to six-year-old Bertie alone in Paris!
10 of 10 people found this review helpful