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MIRACLE AT SPEEDY MOTORS Hardcover – Jan 1 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Pantheon (2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375424482
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375424489
  • Product Dimensions: 21 x 15 x 2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 386 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #723,274 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Stephen A. Haines HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on June 8 2008
Format: Hardcover
We're all familiar with the big miracles: the little child as sole survivor of an airplane crash or the earthquake victim pulled alive from rubble a week after the event. Precious Ramotswe, however, is sensitive to the other kind, the little miracles with long-term meaning for family affairs. Founder of The Number One Ladies Detective Agency of Gabarone, Botswana, Precious has been rather miraculous in her own right. She solves others' problems, counsels her colleague, Grace Makutsi. Precious has also has an ongoing miracle with her husband, Mr JLB Matekoni, owner of Speedy Motors on the Tlokweng Road. But all that good fortune, and the notoriety gained thereby, seems to have produced an enemy, who is sending her threatening letters.

McCall Smith's many volumes in this series has allowed him to fill and strengthen his regular characters, while introducing drop-ins who never fail to leave an impact. Charlie, Mr JLB Matekoni's shop apprentice is a fine example. Appearing regularly in a minor role, Charlie seems readily predictable: brash, self-centred and arrogant, he seems destined never to mature. Is he a candidate for things miraculous? McCall Smith's portrayals are the foundations around which these fine stories are constructed. This may well be the peak effort, a finely written and gripping tale of mystery and resolution.

Precious' skills as a detective are on full display here, as is her humanity. She faces a serious challenge from the letters. Tracking down their originator will be a daunting task. Is she up to facing a serious enemy? Woven into this story is a shift in Mr JLB Matekoni's relations with Precious. A sudden act of independence might lead to tragedy for the family and his workshop.
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By peteyh on Aug. 18 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this instalment of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency. I love the characters (although I find Grace Makutsi annoying at times) and a bit more time was spent on the relationship with the children in this one. A couple of mysteries for the ladies to solve and a misadventure with a heart-shaped bed made for another delightful read.
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By AceofHearts on April 14 2012
Format: Paperback
This is another enjoyable comfort read from Alexander McCall Smith.

Mma Ramotswe finds herself trying to find the family for a woman who does not know anything about them. Mma Rakutsi and her fiance buy a heart shaped bed. Meanwhile Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni listens to a doctor who promises a miracle cure for his adopted daughter. Mma Ramotswe does not believe the doctor but lets her husband find his own way and deals with the outcomes.

Although I felt the mystery part of this book weaker then others in the series, the stories were better. Mma Ramotswe is so compassionate and knows exactly how to deal with her family members. As for the heart-shaped bed, it provided some wonderful comic relief.

Love this series!!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on May 1 2008
Format: Hardcover
My favorite books in this series are filled with authentic stories of Africa and her people. As the series has developed, it's often reading more like people anywhere rather than Africans.

The Miracle at Speedy Motors examines the themes of marital love, parental responsibility, honesty, jealousy, commitment, bonding, handling mistakes, and friendship. In keeping with the detective focus of the series, there are cases to be solved. A woman wants to find an unidentified person. Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi receive threatening letters. A landlord wants to get rid of a tenant.

The focus of the book, however, is on the relationships among the continuing characters, especially Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni and Mma Ramotswe, Mr. Phuti Radiphuti and Mma Makutsi, Mma Ramotswe and Mr. Polopetsi, and Mma Makutsi and Charlie in the garage. You also get to read more about Mma Potokwane and Motholeli than in most of the other books.

What made the book special to me were the heart-felt commitments that some of the characters made towards doing the right thing, no matter what. Alexander McCall Smith loves people and when he expresses that love through his characters it feels great just to be alive.

I found Mma Makutsi more annoying than usual in this book, and not nearly as funny in her foolish scenes. Otherwise, I would have graded the book at five stars. I hope that the next book will focus more on Precious and her family.
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