EPUB

The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

By Paula Edwards,2014-11-04 17:08
14 views 0
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

    No. 1 Ladies' detective Agency 01 - No. 1

    Ladies' Detective Agency

    No. 1 Ladies' detective Agency 01 - No. 1

    Ladies' Detective Agency

    Unknown

    No. 1 Ladies' detective Agency 01 - No. 1

    Ladies' Detective Agency

    No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency

    No. 1 Ladies' detective Agency 01 - No. 1

    Ladies' Detective Agency

    by Alexander McCall Smith

    ?

    Alexander McCall Smith is a professor of medical law at Edinburgh University. He was born inwhat is now known as Zimbabwe and taught law at the University of Botswana. He is the authorof over fifty books on a wide range of subjects, including specialist titles such as ForensicAspects of Sleep and The Criminal Law of Botswana, children's books such as The PerfectHamburger, and a collection of stories called Portuguese Irregular Verbs.

    ?

    THE NO. 1

    LADIES'

    DETECTIVE AGENCY

    Alexander McCall Smith

    Anchor Books

    A Division of Random House, Inc. New York

    ?

    ?

    This book is for

    Anne Gordon-Gillies

    in Scotland

    and for

    ???Joe and Mimi McKnight in Dallas, Texas

    ?

    ?

    ?

    THE NO. 1

    LADIES'

    DETECTIVE AGENCY

    ?

    First Anchor Books Edition, August 2002

    Copyright ? 1998 by Alexander McCall Smith

    ISBN 1-4000-3477-9 (pbk.)

    No. 1 Ladies' detective Agency 01 - No. 1

    Ladies' Detective Agency

    CHAPTER ONE

    ?

    THE DADDY

    ?

    MMA RAMOTSWE had a detective agency in Africa, at the foot of Kgale Hill. These were itsassets: a tiny white van, two desks, two chairs, a telephone, and an old typewriter. Then therewas a teapot, in which Mma Ramotswe—the only lady private detective in Botswana—brewedredbush tea. And three mugs—one for herself, one for her secretary, and one for the client.What else does a detective agency really need? Detective agencies rely on human intuition and

    intelligence, both of which Mma Ramotswe had in abundance. No inventory would ever includethose, of course.

    But there was also the view, which again could appear on no inventory. How could any such listdescribe what one saw when one looked out from Mma Ramotswe's door? To the front, an acaciatree, the thorn tree which dots the wide edges of the Kalahari; the great white thorns, awarning; the olive-grey leaves, by contrast, so delicate. In its branches, in the lateafternoon, or in the cool of the early morning, one might see a Go-Away Bird, or hear it,rather. And beyond the acacia, over the dusty road, the roofs of the town under a cover oftrees and scrub bush; on the horizon, in a blue shimmer of heat, the hills, like improbable,overgrown termite mounds.

    Everybody called her Mma Ramotswe, although if people had wanted to be formal, they would haveaddressed her as Mme Mma Ramotswe. This is the right thing for a person of stature, but whichshe had never used of herself. So it was always Mma Ramotswe, rather than Precious Ramotswe, aname which very few people employed.

    She was a good detective, and a good woman. A good woman in a good country, one might say. Sheloved her country, Botswana, which is a place of peace, and she loved Africa, for all itstrials. I am not ashamed to be called an African patriot, said Mma Ramotswe. I love all thepeople whom God made, but I especially know how to love the people who live in this place. Theyare my people, my brothers and sisters. It is my duty to help them to solve the mysteries intheir lives. That is what I am called to do.

    In idle moments, when there were no pressing matters to be dealt with, and when everybodyseemed to be sleepy from the heat, she would sit under her acacia tree. It was a dusty place tosit, and the chickens would occasionally come and peck about her feet, but it was a place whichseemed to encourage thought. It was here that Mma Ramotswe would contemplate some of the issueswhich, in everyday life, may so easily be pushed to one side.

    Everything, thought Mma Ramotswe, has been something before. Here I am, the only lady privatedetective in the whole of Botswana, sitting in front of my detective agency. But only a fewyears ago there was no detective agency, and before that, before there were even any buildingshere, there were just the acacia trees, and the riverbed in the distance, and the Kalahari overther