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The Careful Use of Compliments (An Isabel Dalhousie Novel)

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The Careful Use of Compliments (An Isabel Dalhousie Novel) Cover

ISBN13: 9780375423017
ISBN10: 037542301x
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Isabel Dalhousie is back, in the latest installment of this enchanting, already beloved, best-selling series.

In addition to being the nosiest and most sypathetic philosopher you are likely to meet, Isabel is now a mother. Charlies, her newborn son, presents her with a myriad wonders of a new life, and doting father Jamie presents her with an intriguing proposal: marriage. In the midst of all this, she receives a disturbing letter announcing that she has been ousted as editor of the Review of Applied Ethics by the ambitious Professor Dove.

None of these things, however, in any way diminshes Isabel's curiosity. And when she attends an art auction, she finds an irresistible puzzle: two paintings attributed to a now-deceased artist appear on the market at the same time, and both of them exhibit some unusual characteristics. Are these paintings forgeries? This proves to be sufficient fodder for Isabel's inquisitiveness. So she begins an investigation... and soon finds herself diverging from her philosophical musings about fatherhood onto a path that leads her into the mysteries of the art world and the soul of an artist.

Review:

"Best known for the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, bestseller Smith shows he's just as adept at exploring mysteries of the heart in his fourth book to feature Edinburgh philosopher-sleuth Isabel Dalhousie (after The Right Attitude to Rain). Isabel has recently become a mother, but she has an ambiguous relationship with her son's father, Jamie, whose attempts to formalize their connection have been unsuccessful. Their ties are further strained by Jamie's ex-girlfriend, Cat, who not only still harbors strong feelings for him but is Isabel's niece. Isabel must also deal with petty academic politics aimed at depriving her of her position as editor of the Review of Applied Ethics. Smith throws in a mystery subplot — did an obscure but talented Scottish painter drown, commit suicide or fall victim to foul play? — but the resolution of that plot thread is more noteworthy for its insights into Isabel's humanistic and optimistic philosophy than for any surprise twists. Once again, Smith displays his skill at illustrating subtle nuances of human nature." Publishers Wekely (Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"'Best known for the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, bestseller Smith shows he's just as adept at exploring mysteries of the heart in his fourth book to feature Edinburgh philosopher-sleuth Isabel Dalhousie (after The Right Attitude to Rain). Isabel has recently become a mother, but she has an ambiguous relationship with her son's father, Jamie, whose attempts to formalize their connection have been unsuccessful. Their ties are further strained by Jamie's ex-girlfriend, Cat, who not only still harbors strong feelings for him but is Isabel's niece. Isabel must also deal with petty academic politics aimed at depriving her of her position as editor of the Review of Applied Ethics. Smith throws in a mystery subplot — did an obscure but talented Scottish painter drown, commit suicide or fall victim to foul play? — but the resolution of that plot thread is more noteworthy for its insights into Isabel's humanistic and optimistic philosophy than for any surprise twists. Once again, Smith displays his skill at illustrating subtle nuances of human nature.' Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"With his trademark wisdom and gentle wit, McCall Smith explores the flaws and foibles of humankind and the powerful bond between mother and child." Booklist

Synopsis:

ISABEL DALHOUSIE - Book 4

Nothing captures the charm of Edinburgh like the bestselling Isabel Dalhousie series of novels featuring the insatiably curious philosopher and woman detective.  Whether investigating a case or a problem of philosophy, the indefatigable Isabel Dalhousie, one of fiction’s most richly developed amateur detectives, is always ready to pursue the answers to all of life’s questions, large and small.

In addition to being the nosiest and most sypathetic philosopher you are likely to meet, Isabel is now a mother. Charlies, her newborn son, presents her with a myriad wonders of a new life, and doting father Jamie presents her with an intriguing proposal: marriage. In the midst of all this, she receives a disturbing letter announcing that she has been ousted as editor of the Review of Applied Ethics by the ambitious Professor Dove.

None of these things, however, in any way diminshes Isabel's curiosity. And when she attends an art auction, she finds an irresistable puzzle: two paintings attributed to a now-deceased artist appear on the market at the same time, and both of them exhibit some unusual characteristics. Are these paintings forgeries? This proves to be sufficient fodder for Isabel's inquisitiveness. So she begins an investigation... and soon finds herself diverging from her philosophical musings about fatherhood onto a path that leads her into the mysteries of the art world and the soul of an artist.

About the Author

Alexander McCall Smith has written more than fifty books, including the bestselling No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency mysteries, TheSunday Philosophy Club series, and many children's stories. A professor of medical law at Edinburgh University, he was born in what is now Zimbabwe and currently lives in Scotland.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Carol Hasenberg, August 31, 2007 (view all comments by Carol Hasenberg)
What I enjoy most about this series is the moral dilemmas encountered by the protagonist and her solutions of them. I was a bit disappointed in the author's solution to the academic backstabbing situation presented in this book -- it could be categorized in the proverbial Gordian knot (brute force) realm. However, his portrayal of the academic environment and its all too human strife is right on the money.

Another characteristic of AMS's books I really like is the character development, and there is plenty of this to be found in this series. I am finding his portrayal of the niece and her continued antagonism to the protagonist to be a bit overplayed, although this does set the stage for some continuous dilemmas for the author to resolve.

Overall, I think the book is a worthy continuation of the series and I look forward to reading more.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(4 of 6 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780375423017
Author:
McCall Smith, Alexander
Publisher:
Pantheon Books
Author:
Smith, Alexander McCall
Author:
Smith, Alexander McCall
Subject:
Mystery & Detective - Women Sleuths
Subject:
Art
Subject:
Art dealers
Subject:
Mystery fiction
Subject:
Mystery-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardcover
Series:
Isabel Dalhousie Mysteries
Publication Date:
20070831
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
8.12x5.76x.98 in. .87 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z

The Careful Use of Compliments (An Isabel Dalhousie Novel) Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.50 In Stock
Product details 256 pages Pantheon Books - English 9780375423017 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Best known for the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, bestseller Smith shows he's just as adept at exploring mysteries of the heart in his fourth book to feature Edinburgh philosopher-sleuth Isabel Dalhousie (after The Right Attitude to Rain). Isabel has recently become a mother, but she has an ambiguous relationship with her son's father, Jamie, whose attempts to formalize their connection have been unsuccessful. Their ties are further strained by Jamie's ex-girlfriend, Cat, who not only still harbors strong feelings for him but is Isabel's niece. Isabel must also deal with petty academic politics aimed at depriving her of her position as editor of the Review of Applied Ethics. Smith throws in a mystery subplot — did an obscure but talented Scottish painter drown, commit suicide or fall victim to foul play? — but the resolution of that plot thread is more noteworthy for its insights into Isabel's humanistic and optimistic philosophy than for any surprise twists. Once again, Smith displays his skill at illustrating subtle nuances of human nature." Publishers Wekely (Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "'Best known for the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, bestseller Smith shows he's just as adept at exploring mysteries of the heart in his fourth book to feature Edinburgh philosopher-sleuth Isabel Dalhousie (after The Right Attitude to Rain). Isabel has recently become a mother, but she has an ambiguous relationship with her son's father, Jamie, whose attempts to formalize their connection have been unsuccessful. Their ties are further strained by Jamie's ex-girlfriend, Cat, who not only still harbors strong feelings for him but is Isabel's niece. Isabel must also deal with petty academic politics aimed at depriving her of her position as editor of the Review of Applied Ethics. Smith throws in a mystery subplot — did an obscure but talented Scottish painter drown, commit suicide or fall victim to foul play? — but the resolution of that plot thread is more noteworthy for its insights into Isabel's humanistic and optimistic philosophy than for any surprise twists. Once again, Smith displays his skill at illustrating subtle nuances of human nature.' Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "With his trademark wisdom and gentle wit, McCall Smith explores the flaws and foibles of humankind and the powerful bond between mother and child."
"Synopsis" by , ISABEL DALHOUSIE - Book 4

Nothing captures the charm of Edinburgh like the bestselling Isabel Dalhousie series of novels featuring the insatiably curious philosopher and woman detective.  Whether investigating a case or a problem of philosophy, the indefatigable Isabel Dalhousie, one of fiction’s most richly developed amateur detectives, is always ready to pursue the answers to all of life’s questions, large and small.

In addition to being the nosiest and most sypathetic philosopher you are likely to meet, Isabel is now a mother. Charlies, her newborn son, presents her with a myriad wonders of a new life, and doting father Jamie presents her with an intriguing proposal: marriage. In the midst of all this, she receives a disturbing letter announcing that she has been ousted as editor of the Review of Applied Ethics by the ambitious Professor Dove.

None of these things, however, in any way diminshes Isabel's curiosity. And when she attends an art auction, she finds an irresistable puzzle: two paintings attributed to a now-deceased artist appear on the market at the same time, and both of them exhibit some unusual characteristics. Are these paintings forgeries? This proves to be sufficient fodder for Isabel's inquisitiveness. So she begins an investigation... and soon finds herself diverging from her philosophical musings about fatherhood onto a path that leads her into the mysteries of the art world and the soul of an artist.

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