Alexander McCall Smith

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Alexander McCall Smith

Goodreads Author

in Bulawayo (formerly the British colony of Southern Rhodesia), Zimbabwe


Member Since
April 2010


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 is now known as Zimbabwe and he was a law professor at the University of Botswana. He lives in Scotland. Visit him online at, on Facebook, and on Twitter. ...more

Popular Answered Questions

Alexander McCall Smith You;re right about kindness being overlooked. I think it is an absolutely important quality, and yet we tend not to celebrate it enough. I like to put…moreYou;re right about kindness being overlooked. I think it is an absolutely important quality, and yet we tend not to celebrate it enough. I like to put it into my books because I admire it when I encounter it. AMcS(less)
Alexander McCall Smith Yes. The next one will be published in October. The Woman Who Walked in Sunshine. AMcS
Average rating: 3.87 · 879,963 ratings · 73,664 reviews · 332 distinct worksSimilar authors
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective...

3.78 avg rating — 225,595 ratings — published 1998 — 7 editions
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Tears of the Giraffe (No. 1...

3.97 avg rating — 48,228 ratings — published 2000 — 84 editions
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Morality for Beautiful Girl...

3.98 avg rating — 37,289 ratings — published 2001 — 73 editions
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The Kalahari Typing School ...

really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 34,755 ratings — published 2002 — 70 editions
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The Full Cupboard of Life (...

4.02 avg rating — 28,651 ratings — published 2003 — 52 editions
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Blue Shoes and Happiness (N...

4.06 avg rating — 24,895 ratings — published 2006 — 2 editions
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In the Company of Cheerful ...

4.08 avg rating — 25,489 ratings — published 2004 — 3 editions
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The Good Husband of Zebra D...

4.07 avg rating — 23,111 ratings — published 2007 — 59 editions
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The Miracle at Speedy Motor...

4.09 avg rating — 21,271 ratings — published 2008 — 3 editions
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Tea Time for the Traditiona...

4.12 avg rating — 19,504 ratings — published 2009 — 46 editions
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More books by Alexander McCall Smith…
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective... Tears of the Giraffe Morality for Beautiful Girls The Kalahari Typing School ... The Full Cupboard of Life In the Company of Cheerful ... Blue Shoes and Happiness
(21 books)
3.94 avg rating — 597,063 ratings

The Sunday Philosophy Club Friends, Lovers, Chocolate The Right Attitude to Rain The Careful Use of Compliments The Comforts of a Muddy Sat... The Lost Art of Gratitude The Charming Quirks of Others
(13 books)
3.69 avg rating — 89,441 ratings

44 Scotland Street Espresso Tales Love Over Scotland The World According to Bertie The Unbearable Lightness of... The Importance of Being Seven Bertie Plays the Blues
(13 books)
3.93 avg rating — 82,577 ratings

Portuguese Irregular Verbs The Finer Points of Sausage... At the Villa of Reduced Cir... Unusual Uses for Olive Oil
(4 books)
3.59 avg rating — 19,561 ratings

Corduroy Mansions The Dog who Came in from th... A Conspiracy of Friends
(3 books)
3.70 avg rating — 14,340 ratings

More series by Alexander McCall Smith…

Related News

His Favorite Books Set in the Tropics: Take your imagination to the Cayman Islands in his new novel, The Forever Girl, and in these five recs set i...
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I think it is important to remember that, in spite of [HIV], countries in sub-Saharan Africa keep going as best they can, and therefore we should n...
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"When you have eliminated all which is impossible, then whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth"-Sherlock Holme...
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Alexander’s Recent Updates

Alexander Smith answered Daniela's question: Alexander McCall Smith
I often get up very early in the morning to write. I find that I can be very productive at that time as it is so quiet and I can write without any disturbance. I travel a great deal and often find myself writing on planes and trains, and in hotel roo See Full Answer
Alexander Smith answered Jodi's question: Alexander McCall Smith
Thank you - I am delighted to hear that you have been enjoying the books in The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, and I greatly appreciated your kind remarks. Mma Ramotswe is not based on any particular person, but she shares the warmth and reso See Full Answer
Alexander McCall Smith is accepting questions on his profile page.
" Kathy wrote: "How much input did you get in the making of this series, and which episodes do you especially like, if any?

I like the casting and the f
...more "
Alexander Smith made a comment in the group Q&A with Alexander McCall SmithCharacters / Plot topic
" Suzanne wrote: "Hello Mr.Smith. When you created Precious and her series, did you intend to write a simple plot and simple cast of characters that wou ...more "
" Jamie wrote: "Hi Mr. McCall Smith,

I was just wondering, what does it mean at the end of the books when you write Africa, Africa, Africa, ect.?

I love t
...more "
" Anna wrote: "Dear Mr McCall Smith, I am the person to whom you kindly answered for an interview published on a Italian Review of Books. Just a questio ...more "
Alexander Smith made a comment in the group Q&A with Alexander McCall SmithScotland Street topic
" In the next book, The Importance of Being Seven, Bertie goes fishing with his father. They have various adventures and he gets a glimpse of what might ...more "
Who is your favorite character from the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series?

He voted for: Precious Ramotswe
More of Alexander's books…
“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.”
Alexander McCall Smith, The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

“It is sometimes easier to be happy if you don't know everything.”
Alexander McCall Smith, Morality for Beautiful Girls

“She was made for untidy rooms and rumpled beds.”
Alexander McCall Smith, The Sunday Philosophy Club


Which book would you like to read for our February New Release Selection?

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31 total votes

Topics Mentioning This Author

32846 Q&A with Alexander McCall Smith — 490 members — last activity May 05, 2015 07:39PM
THIS Q&A HAS CONCLUDEDBest-selling author Alexander McCall Smith joined Goodreads fans for a Q&A and group chat May 10-17, 2010. The official Q&A is n ...more

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