Full Cupboard of Life

Smith, Alexander McCall. The Full Cupboard of Life

Reason read: In honor of Mystery Month I started this series way back in January. The Full cupboard of Life is the fifth book in the series recommended by Nancy Pearl in either Book Lust, more Book Lust, or Book Lust To Go. I am nearing the end of my time with Mma Ramotswe and her family at the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency. I started in January with The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency and now have one more book to read after The Full Cupboard of Life.

When we return to Mma Ramotswe we learn she is still engaged to Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni. They have yet to set a wedding date. There is no doubt Mma Ramotswe is patient lady! Although, in this 5th installment she is losing faith and dares to ask Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni the dreaded “when” question. It is even starting to weigh on Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni as he dreams about a wedding date.
The one noticeable difference about The Full Cupboard of Life is that, unlike previous books in the series, the plot is not as seamless as the others. Instead of picking up where the reader left off Smith takes the time to bring the reader back to the very beginning of the series, explaining who Mma Ramotswe is and how she came to have the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency in Botswana. He also takes the time to reintroduce us to Mma Ramotswe’s beloved daddy and other early relationships. There is less emphasis on “mysteries” to solve.

Book trivia: The Full Cupboard of Life is  the last book I will read in order in the series. After this I am actually skipping THREE others: In the Company of Cheerful Ladies, Blue Shoes and Happiness, and The Good Husband of Zebra Drive (does this mean I missed the wedding?). I wonder why Pearl doesn’t include them in any of her recommendations?

Author fact: Alexander McCall Smith is currently on a lecture tour but (unfortunately!) comes nowhere near me. Bummer. I’m a huge fan now.

BookLust Twist: from More Book Lust in the chapter called “Ms. Mystery” (p 171). But, of course. As an aside, this was the first book I listened to on cassette and sadly, the tape was a little warped. This listening experience was not as enjoyable as the disc versions.



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