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Văn phòng thám tử số 1 dành cho các quý bà (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency #1)

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  176,063 Ratings  ·  8,857 Reviews
Những cô con gái của Wayward. Những ông chồng mất tích. Những đối tác hào hoa, đa tình. Nếu bạn gặp vấn đề rắc rối, thì hãy đến thăm Precious Ramostswe, nữ thám tử tư xinh đẹp và duy nhất ở Botswana.

Những phương pháp điều tra của cô ấy có thể không theo lối cổ truyền, phong cách của cô ấy không giống như quý bà Marple, nhưng cô ấy có sự nhiệt tình, trí thông minh, khả năng
ebook, 1st, 288 pages
Published November 13th 2010 by Bookaholic Club (first published 1998)
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june m. freeman I have read all 15 books in the series and loved them all! It is hard to wait for the next one. You can't help but love all the characters.
Doris N The order matters to understand the series but each stand on their own. I have no issue with reading books out of order but this series is worth…moreThe order matters to understand the series but each stand on their own. I have no issue with reading books out of order but this series is worth reading in order (character development, progession/growth.)(less)
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Community Reviews

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ebnewberry Newberry
Jul 07, 2011 ebnewberry Newberry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Shelves: ams, fiction
A lot of people are under the impression that Alexander Mccall Smith books are strictly for middle aged women. This is NOT the case at all. These books are for everyone. They are not even just for women. A lot of people are also under the impression that these books are mystery books. This is also a misconception. Mysteries are a very small part of these stories. These books are about humanity and the small things that make it so good to be both human and alive. I dare anyone who is not happy to ...more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
I'm no fan of mystery, crime or detective books - the bore me, generally, though I loved Kerry Greenwood's Phryne Fisher books in high school and Agatha Christie's Ten Little Niggers gave me chills (since renamed And Then There Were None, for obvious reasons - but I've got an old edition).

The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency is a real gem, however. I absolutely loved it. Wise, funny, intelligent, insightful and blushing with vigour and a heartfelt love of Africa, I'm not in the least surprised this
Will Byrnes
Aug 19, 2015 Will Byrnes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The No.1 Ladies Detective Agency is a delightful work and a quick read to boot. Smith alternates between small bits of back-story for the central character, Precious Ramotswe, a woman of traditional build, young-middle-aged (30s?) divorcee, heavy with intelligence, gumption and cunning, and the mysteries she unravels as the sole detective of the title agency.

Jill Scott as Precious Ramotswe and Anika Noni Rose as Grace Makutsi - from the HBO production

It is rich with payload on local (Botswana)
Oct 30, 2009 Gail rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lovers of mysteries and stories about Africa
This collection of vignettes disguised as a novel was a great read. The main character is a gentle African woman who decides to be a detective to help other people. She is a delightful character, with light humor and a big heart. Agency isn't like any other detective novels...the characters are much more developed and the "mysteries" aren't the usual murders, whether cosy or hard-boiled. If you'd like a sweet trip to another culture, calmer and gnetler than ours, this is a book for you.
Eric Bjerke
Jun 23, 2008 Eric Bjerke rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
Recommended to Eric by: Deb Dooley
I put off reading this series for a long time until I found out that it wasn't a book for "ladies," but one to be enjoyed by readers of both sexes--and enjoy it I did.

In its simple and conversational manner, this book taught me a little bit about many things: Botswana, African culture in general, working in the diamond mines of South Africa, and human nature. Through the first-person account of Precious Ramotswe we are treated to an assortment of quirky detective stories that are intertwined wi
A new favourite! I know, I know. I’m late to Precious Ramotswe and her wonderful business, and I shouldn’t have waited so long to enjoy these books. I loved this first book in the series. Funny, good-natured, good-hearted and poignant.

How a white Scotsman got into the head of a black lady in Botswana (or vice versa) is beyond me, but thank goodness for us readers that he did. She is absolutely delightful. “Mma Ramotswe was not tall—being blessed with generous girth, rather than height…”

May 29, 2013 Lula rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the ladies
Recommended to Lula by: mom
Shelves: novels
I listened to this book on CD! The woman reading it is awesome! And the African Music in the background sets the scene perfectly! This is the perfect, lighthearted book to listen to in the car. I drove around daydreaming that I was driving through the Kalihari! Loved it!
Caro M.
This book was built on slow paced descriptions of African - Botswanian, to be precise - life and on the charismatic character of Mma Ramotswe, the first lady detective in Botswana. I didn't mind the slow pace, and I loved Precious Ramotswe.


Also, I didn't mind that some mysteries were rather predictable and there wasn't any crazy action with shooting and whatnot. I enjoyed the "slice of life" pictures of Africa a lot. The warm relationship between Precious and her father was truly touching.
Aug 18, 2016 Fabian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone with 3-4 hrs to spare--doesn't care much for tv
I read about Africa and I quickly want to be transported there. I want a more simple life...

The heart of this novel is its feminist protagonist, Mma Ramotswe who lives in a precious town in Gaborone, still untouched by technology or South African cosmopolitanism. This book is extremely feminist, in a very good, positive and enlightening way, as it is anti-colonialist.

But to counter this notion there is a heartwarming case that Mma Ramotswe, the number one (and sole) female detective in Botswana
If you have had a rough week, if your day has been hectic and you feel frazzled, I recommend sitting down with The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency for a while. I would describe the feeling of reading it to be “calming.” It is very unlike the North American or Scandinavian crime fiction genre.

I’ve never been to Botswana, but I felt like I had taken a mini-holiday there by the end of the book. And you get an insight into the people and their culture than you would never get as a tourist—a sense of h
Aug 07, 2011 Mark rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: never-again
i am probably the only person in the whole world who thinks this but these books are singularly underwhelming. Nothing ever happens. The characters are annoying. To be honest I did only read this first one but couldn't face another. Have refrained from putting this on my list till now cos I always thought I might try another and find it more interesting but then I thought there are enormous caverns of books as yet undiscovered. Why force myself to read another book of this just because I feel I ...more
"Women are the ones who knows what's going on," she said quietly . "They are the ones with eyes. Have you not heard of Agatha Christie?" I love Mma Ramotswe. She is funny, wonderful, brave, and unapologetically a feminist. Sure, she's made mistakes. Sure, she's done stupid things, but then again, that just gives her more character. Detective agencies rely on human intuition and intelligence, both of which Mma Ramotswe had in abundance. No inventory would ever include those, of course.

I was b
Apr 24, 2010 Ruth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ruth by: Melinda
The only thing I didn't like was that it had to end.

I learned that you don't have to write elloquently to write a book. Marcos keeps telling me I should write children's books. This book was so simple and yet so enjoyable that it makes me wonder if I really could write a book too.

Because each mystery/case is so short and precise, it doesn't need all the suspense other books use. I think the suspense in this book is about finding out what the next problem wil be and how clever she is to solve it.
Mar 27, 2009 Brian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pleasant and somewhat interesting, but not compelling.

It's my impression that mystery novels are part puzzle and part vehicle for depicting a cross-section of life in some locale. The puzzle part in No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency was never very elaborate. Most mysteries arose and resolved in the span of one chapter. In fact it seemed like the point was to showcase Precious' subtle knack for zeroing in and keeping things from being more complex than they need to be. Precious and her approach to s
Ace ⚓
Mar 05, 2016 Ace ⚓ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a refreshing change to read the great little Botswanian mysteries that unfold, as the wonderfully strong and fiercely independent Precious Ramotswe sets up her agency. I will be reading the rest of this series for sure and I must learn how to cook chicken with pumpkin!

"She stopped. It was time to take the pumpkin out of the pot and eat it. In the final analysis, that was what solved these big problems of life. You could think and think and get nowhere, but you still had to eat your pumpkin.
May 16, 2008 Beth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love all the books in this series. They are funny and insightful and full of wisdom. I can hardly wait for the next one to come out. These are books I love to read and don't hesitate to recommend to anyone. One friend I recommended them to didn't like them. She said it was like reading a book written for twelve-year-olds (Mr. McCall Smith has written several books for children). Well, maybe that's why I like them; I love to read childrens/young adult fiction!. I wouldn't hesitate to have a twe ...more
I have not read very many books set in Africa or featuring African culture. In fact, I can only think of one other one off the top of my head, and I didn't care for it much. But both of them were similar in that they both told their story by way of mini-stories, and each one of those has something of a moral or message.

I've read so little in this niche that I don't know if that's something that is common in Africa-based storytelling, or if it just happens to be coincidental, but I can say for c
I should have paid more attention to the reviewer who said that this is not a mystery. It's not. And that's what I was after. This is a collection of tales about people and their problems. The main character solves their problems in unconventional ways, and so maintains a private detective agency.

It is told in simplistic language, distancing me from the stories, which are rambling and random. There is little cohesion to the plot. It's a more realistic ebb and flow of lives that cross each other
May 17, 2012 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lady detectives, Botswanans
I had heard of this series, and in the mood for a light mystery and fond of those that use settings that most American readers aren't familiar with, I gave the first book a try. I was pleasantly surprised by the combination of warmth and seriousness that Alexandra McCall Smith brought to his stories about Mma "Precious" Ramotswe.

Precious decides to go into business as a private detective after her no-good abusive husband leaves her. Mens' violence against women and the extreme sexism of African
The best word to describe this book, start to finish, is charming. From the very first paragraph, it was sweet and endearing. It's the story of a middle aged woman opening the very first female detective agency in Africa with her inheritance.

Every book I've read that takes place in Africa is told in such a calm, simple voice. The worst things can be happening and yet calmness oozes off the page. People do bad things and no one gets overly upset or surprised. People ARE people and DO bad things.
Nov 03, 2007 Zab rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book is written in a style where it's not clear whether the narrator is just being very understated, or whether the characters are all just kinda simple-minded. I love that style in Daniel Pinkwater when he's writing about New Jersey, but I feel reservations about it when it's a white guy (even one raised in southern Africa) writing about Africa.

Granted, when the narrator makes sweeping generalizations about Africa as a whole (which happens a number of times), they are generally positive (e
Mar 12, 2016 Camie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What's not to like about this simply written story featuring Precious Ramotswe who sets up the only detective agency in Botswana and with all of the training a single course manual can provide combined with a well tuned "woman's intuition " sets off in her tiny white van sporting her unabashedly sturdy "Traditional" figure and an inquisitive mind to solve the cases brought to her by clients in her little beloved corner of Africa. The first in a series which has numerous awards. 4 stars
Mar 10, 2008 Happyreader rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
While the book had its charms, it was such a slow read. I kept thinking it would pick up and it didn't.
I was very excited when I received this book as a christmas gift. I hadn't read McCall Smith previously, and had heard wonderful things from just about everywhere about him. Not to mention that I love Africa. I was sure it would blow me away and so disappointed when it didn't. Perhaps it was my high expectations that ruined it for me, I shouldn't have expected so much, we all know what happens when we do.

Something felt off. It wasn't the story, the story was good, and the setting of course was j
Beth A.
Mar 07, 2011 Beth A. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I love this series. More about relationships and life than mysteries.

The characters are just so real, people I actually wish I knew. It's full of warm friendly humor. She solves her cases with common sense and woman's intuition.

I remember one favorite scene. Mma Ramotswe is interviewing a client. She is a woman of "traditional build". She thinks to herself that the woman she is speaking to needs to admit her girth and buy a larger size dress. McCall Smith then moves to the point of view of the
Lisa Ann ☕
This was a quick read that I believe definitely falls into the cozy mystery subgenre. Since the book summary available through Goodreads provides an adequate description of the story, I am going to skip that aspect within my review.

The most difficult part of writing this is to provide a rating that accurately represents my feelings about the book. For full disclosure, I attempted to read this book in 2011 and about a third of the way through the book, decided to set it aside. In retrospect, it r
Ivonne Rovira
Jun 06, 2012 Ivonne Rovira rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The debut novel in this series is the weakest one, but still good. Still, don't skip The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, as each novel builds on the one that came before.

The novel appears to be a collection of short stories about the cases of Mma Precious Ramotswe, a clever and gentle Botswanan woman who goes into the detective business armed only with a how-to book, an incomparable secretary and her own good sense. In the end, it turns out to be enough, and all the stories tie in together by th
Linda Ostrom
A simply written, beautiful story about a lady, Precious Ramotswe, who opens a detective agency with money that she inherited from her father. She was his only child and he wanted her to open a business for herself, but she decided on the detective agency.

Her little part of Botswana in Africa is her pride and she is very successful in her escapades with many different types of detecting jobs.

A thoroughly enjoyable read. It is the first in a series and I will be looking for and reading the next b
Apr 13, 2015 Amber rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: librarybooks
Mma Precious Ramotwse decides to do a Detective Agency in her hometown of Gaborone in Africa with the money she got from selling her father's cattle herd after his death. When her business opens, she receives tons of cases to solve from a lost husband to a concerned father wondering if her daughter is going out with boys and more. Want to read more? Check this book out for yourself and find out.

This was a pretty good mystery. If you are a fan of mysteries, be sure to check this book out at your
Ana Ovejero
Oct 27, 2015 Ana Ovejero rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"we are the ones who first ploughed the earth when Modise(God) made it,' ran an old Setswana poem. 'We were the ones who made the food. We are the ones who look after the men when they are little boys, when they are young men, and when they are old and about to die. We are always there. But we are just women, and nobody sees us.'
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Alexander McCall Smith is the author of the international phenomenon The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series, the Isabel Dalhousie Series, the Portuguese Irregular Verbs series, and the 44 Scotland Street series. He is professor emeritus of medical law at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland and has served on many national and international bodies concerned with bioethics. He was born in what ...more
More about Alexander McCall Smith...

Other Books in the Series

No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (1 - 10 of 17 books)
  • Tears of the Giraffe (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #2)
  • Morality for Beautiful Girls (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #3)
  • The Kalahari Typing School for Men (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #4)
  • The Full Cupboard of Life (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #5)
  • In the Company of Cheerful Ladies (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #6)
  • Blue Shoes and Happiness (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #7)
  • The Good Husband of Zebra Drive (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #8)
  • The Miracle at Speedy Motors (No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #9)
  • Tea Time for the Traditionally Built (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #10)
  • The Double Comfort Safari Club (No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency, #11)

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“You can go through life and make new friends every year - every month practically - but there was never any substitute for those friendships of childhood that survive into adult years. Those are the ones in which we are bound to one another with hoops of steel.” 2150 likes
“It was time to take the pumpkin out of the pot and eat it. In the final analysis, that was what solved these big problems of life. You could think and think and get nowhere, but you still had to eat your pumpkin. That brought you down to earth. That gave you a reason for going on. Pumpkin.” 86 likes
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