Monday, June 4, 2012
Blue Shoes and Happiness by Alexander McCall Smith
I have just realized I have never reviewed any of Alexander McCall Smith's series, though I have read from each one. McCall Smith's series are primers in "how to be kind." He calmly and rationally helps us to negotiate everyday conundrums that plague us and make us anxious and bitter. The thoughtful reactions he puts in the voice of Mma Ramotswe are kind and comforting, her solutions sensitive and gracious.
If blue shoes can bring happiness, it may be worth owning them even if they are too small. And, there is evil in the world, but most people want to do the right thing. It’s just that people are weak. One should recognize one’s weaknesses: if they are inconsequential or will make your life (or the lives of those around you) a misery to change, it may be better to just live with it.
Mma Ramotswe is a forgiving woman. She doesn’t chide her assistant for small failings, like purchasing blue shoes that are too small, nor does she agonize over her own “traditionally-built” size. She knows she should diet, but if she wants (and deserves!) cake, is it so very wrong to have a small piece?
Every book in this series is a little vacation for the mind. We are given time to consider problems that many of us face, and see how elegant solutions can be found that satisfy. The voice of Lisette Lecat defines the series. Her voice is such a perfect vehicle for the writing that I prefer to listen to these books published as downloadable files by Recorded Books.
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