Friends, Lovers, Chocolate
by Alexander McCall Smith
“The problem with being me (…) is that I keep thinking about the problem of being me.”
Genre: crime fiction
Once again I founded myself totally absorbed into McCall Smith’s book.
Maybe because they are not so long, or maybe because the story itself is really interesting and captivating that I read the second book of Isabel Dalhouise’s series in two days.
Isabel is still, for me, a mistrustful character; as I previously said in my review of the first book of the series, she is too much acculturated, and sometimes she appears to me as boring and unreal.
But, except for her, I do like these novels; the setting is still Edinburgh and its Scottish culture, but this time there is a new culture which is took into consideration, the Italian one.
There is one thing, as Italian, I couldn’t stand, the way in which my culture and Italians are described.
I don’t know if Isabel’s words are the expression of the author’s thoughts and believes, but they are untrue and far away from the reality.
Anyway, this time the mystery aspect of the novel is different from the previous one, and it was something I really appreciated.
I didn’t want to read another book exactly like the first one, so it was a good surprise for me, and it shows to any reader that we may consider as a crime story also a book that tells about something normal, close to our daily life.
With this second book, the characters I met for the first time with the previous one are further described, and they show new aspects of their personalities.
Luckily for me, this time Kant has not been mentioned, and though there are a lot of philosophical references – Isabel is a philosopher – they are not so boring or redundant as I perceived while reading the first book.
Once you start reading this story you deeply want to know how it will end, and you can’t leave the book even for a second.
It is a really pleasant reading, and I think it is perfect for any season; summer, while relaxing on the beach, spring, lying on the grass, autumn and winter, when outside is raining and you stay at home with a warm cup of tea or coffee.
Moreover, this series is a good exercise for our brain, because it helps us to analyse different situations from different points of view, thanks to Isabel’s thoughts and considerations.