Saturday, January 20, 2018

Audiobook Review: The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

This is an audiobook review.

I’ve never had the desire to visit Africa, but as soon as I finished listening, I wanted to hop the next flight to Botswana. This audiobook is a gem. There are no car chases, no gunfights, so martial arts smack downs just a smart woman working hard to realize her dream of being the first lady detective in Botswana. There’s a ton I liked. The heroine, Precious Ramotswe, is clever, observant, and has a kind heart, all excellent qualities for a lady detective. She is, as she says, “a fat African woman” and proud of it. The cozy mysteries at her detective agency are told with good humor and charm. The timeline of the story flicks from past to present, but is so well-written it’s easy to follow. The reader learns about Precious’ childhood and how she developed the knack for detective work. Along the way, family, friends, and fascinating characters galore appear. I enjoyed the asides. They brought more descriptive color to an already colorful tale.

The author has an exceptional eye for detail and writes with the completely believable voice of a black African woman. It’s not long before I felt I was sitting next to Precious in her little white van driving along the dusty back roads of Botswana, off on another case. I rather wish I was.

The narrator, Lisette Lecat, is outstanding. She can do female and male characters of different ages and tackles the soft lilt of African accents with ease. Her pronunciation of African words is smooth and erring. For this reason, I highly recommend the audiobook over electronic or print versions.  

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