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Alexander Mccall Smith - Author

About the Author

Alexander McCall Smith has written more than fifty books, including specialist academic titles, short story collections, and a number of immensely popular children's books. But he is best known for his internationally acclaimed No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series, published in the US in 2002 and 2003. The first installment, The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, received two Booker Judge's Special Recommendations upon its U.K. publication in 1998, and in 2003 received The Saga Wit Award (commonly known as the "silver Booker" for authors over the age of 50). The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series now numbers a total of five books (he is working on the sixth) and has been optioned for feature film. The series has become an international bestseller, with more than 3.5 million copies in print in the U.S. alone.

McCall Smith was born in Zimbabwe (formerly called Southern Rhodesia) and was educated there and in Scotland. He became a law professor in Scotland, and it was in this role that he first returned to Africa to work in Botswana, where he helped to set up a new law school at the University of Botswana. He was for many years Professor of Medical Law at the University of Edinburgh, and a visiting professor at a number of other universities elsewhere, including ones in Italy and the United States (where he has twice been visiting professor at SMU Law School in Dallas, Texas).

In addition to his university work, he was for four years the vice-chairman of the Human Genetics Commission of the UK, the chairman of the British Medical Journal Ethics Committee, and a member of the International Bioethics Commission of UNESCO.

Alexander McCall Smith currently lives in Edinburgh with his wife Elizabeth (an Edinburgh doctor), their two daughters Lucy and Emily, and their cat Gordon. His hobbies include playing wind instruments, and he is the co-founder of an amateur orchestra called "The Really Terrible Orchestra" in which he plays the bassoon and his wife plays the flute.

Featured books by Alexander Mccall Smith

Precious and the Monkeys

Precious and the Monkeys

7+ readers 9+ readers

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith Format: Hardback Release Date: 28/06/2011

If you're a fan of Alexander McCall Smith's No. 1 Detective Agency series or know someone who is then do take a look at this delightful and enchanting children's tale telling how the young Precious Ramotswe became the No. 1 Detective she is today.  Well before Precious Ramotswe founded her Number One Ladies' Detective Agency, as an eight-year-old girl she was already solving mysteries. Here we find out just who has been stealing her schoolfriends' snacks and how the young Precious became the crafty and intuitive private investigator we all know and love as she solves her first case! Kids aged 8 to 108 will love it!

ebook of the month

Other books by Alexander Mccall Smith

Love in the Time of Bertie A 44 Scotland Street Novel

Love in the Time of Bertie A 44 Scotland Street Novel

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/11/2021

Once more, we catch up with the delightful goings-on in the fictitious 44 Scotland Street from Alexander McCall Smith. With customary charm and deftness, Alexander McCall Smith gives us another instalment in this popular series, soon to be running in its fifteenth season in the Scotsman newspaper in daily instalments before appearing here in book format. Anything could happen to Bertie and the gang...

Chance Developments Unexpected Love Stories

Chance Developments Unexpected Love Stories

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/10/2021

In this beguiling book, Alexander McCall Smith casts his eye over five chanced-upon photographs from the era of black-and-white photography and imagines the stories behind them. Who were those people, what were their stories, why are they smiling, what made them sad? What emerges are surprising and poignant tales of love and friendship in a variety of settings - an estate in the Highlands of Scotland, a travelling circus in Canada, an Australian gold-mining town, a village in Ireland, and the Scottish capital, Edinburgh. Some will find joy and fulfilment - others would prefer happier endings.Each of them, though, will find love, and that is ultimately what matters.

The Joy and Light Bus Company

The Joy and Light Bus Company

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/09/2021

The latest instalment from the beloved THE NO. 1 LADIES' DETECTIVE AGENCY series Mma Ramotswe knows she is very lucky indeed. She has a loving family, good friends and a thriving business doing what she enjoys most: helping people. But the latest mystery she is called upon to solve is distinctly trickier than it initially appears, and, of course, there's plenty to handle in her personal life between Charlie and his new bride and Mma Makutsi and her talking shoes. In the end, Mma Ramotswe's patience and common-sense will win out, and, without a doubt, all will be the better for it.

How to Raise an Elephant

How to Raise an Elephant

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 02/09/2021

The latest instalment from the beloved THE NO. 1 LADIES' DETECTIVE AGENCY series Catch up on the latest from Mma Ramotswe, Mma Makutsi and other favourites in this new instalment of Alexander McCall Smith's The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. As the temperature rises in Gaborone, Precious Ramotswe, founder of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, wonders whether the heat could be the reason that business is particularly slow. Luckily, a slower pace in life is her natural preference, unlike her colleague Mma Makutsi, who is alert to every passing observation and inclined to making snap decisions. With fewer cases to handle, Precious has time to contemplate her new neighbours, a couple who, by the sounds of it, have a rather volatile relationship . . . But then a distant cousin of Mma Ramotswe's comes to the agency with a plea for help, and the ladies decide to pursue the issue together. Armed with Mma Ramotswe's circumspection and Mma Makutsi's sharp eye, they proceed with confidence and open hearts. What, after all, could be more straightforward than a family matter? Meanwhile, their colleague Charlie is behaving oddly, borrowing Mma Ramotswe's van and returning it in an unusual condition. Digging a little deeper, the explanation is both strange and extraordinary, and takes Charlie, along with Mma Ramotswe's husband, Mr J. L. B. Matekoni, on a hair-raising night-time expedition. In the end, Precious is reminded of the need to view a picture from every angle, to accept the imperfections in people and situations, and then find a solution - preferably over a delicious slice of her friend Mma Potokwani's fruit cake. 'Irresistible' The Times 'Every page contains a gem of wit and insight' Scotsman

The Joy and Light Bus Company

The Joy and Light Bus Company

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 02/09/2021

The latest instalment from the beloved THE NO. 1 LADIES' DETECTIVE AGENCY series

Boing Boing

Boing Boing

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith Illustrator: Zoe Persico Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 02/09/2021

Jane has always been just a little bit different - she has springs in her knees! She wins all the high jump competitions and can reach the top book shelf, and if anyone stares too hard she just bounces right over them! But after a terrible flood the town needs her help - can her springs save the day? A brilliant tale from global bestseller Alexander McCall Smith now in a hi-lo, dyslexia-friendly format for the struggling middle grade reader.

The Pavilion in the Clouds A new stand-alone novel

The Pavilion in the Clouds A new stand-alone novel

Author: Alexander Mccall Smith Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/08/2021

It is 1938 and the final days of the British Empire. In a bungalow high up in the green hills above the plains of Ceylon, under a vast blue sky, live the Ferguson family: Bella, a precocious eight-year-old; her father Henry - owner of Pitlochry, a tea plantation - and her mother Virginia. The story centres around the Pavilion in the Clouds, set in the idyllic grounds carved out of the wilderness. But all is not as serene as it seems. Bella is suspicious of her governess, Miss White's intentions. Her suspicion sparks off her mother's imagination and after an unfortunate series of events, a confrontation is had with Miss White and a gunshot rings off around the hills. Years later, Bella, now living back in Scotland at university in St Andrews, is faced, once again with her past. Will she at last find out what happened between her Father and Miss White? And will the guilt she has lived with all these years be reconciled by a long over-due apology?

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