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About the Author: Alexander McCall Smith

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 www.alexandermccallsmith.com, on Facebook, and on Twitter.


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Goodreads rating: 3.67

Hardcover, Published in Sep 2012 by Little Brown and Company

ISBN10: 1408704145 | ISBN13: 9781408704141

Page count: 256

The newest addition—the ninth!—to Alexander McCall Smith's ever-delightful Isabel Dalhousie series.

Isabel is asked to help a wealthy Scottish landowner who has been robbed of a valuable painting. This painting, by the celebrated French artist Nicolas Poussin, had been earmarked for ultimate donation to the Scottish National Gallery. The owner is uncomfortable about an approach he has received from the thieves and hopes that Isabel will assist him. She agrees—in spite of the misgivings of her husband, Jamie. There is also the question of the thieves' identities. Could they be people who are rather close to the owner? It begins to look as if this may be so . . . Against the backdrop of this intriguing case, Isabel leads her day-to-day life, coping with issues small and large. One small issue is whether her three-year-old son, Charlie, is a budding mathematical genius—and what should be done about it. And then there is the question of whether she should help a young man employed in her niece's delicatessen to live with his girlfriend against the wishes of the girlfriend's parents. The answers to both of these questions test Isabel's qualities as a parent, a philosopher, and a friend.

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