24 Jul 2012

FRIENDS, LOVERS, CHOCOLATE.

FRIENDS, LOVERS, CHOCOLATE by ALEXANDER McCALL SMITH.


Isabel Dalhousie thinks often of friends, sometimes of lovers, and on occasion of chocolate. As an Edinburgh philosopher she is certain of where she stands. She can review a book called In Praise Of Sin with panache and conviction, but  real life is ..... well, perhaps a bit more challenging - particularly when it comes to her feelings for Jamie, a younger man who should have married her niece Cat.


And more disturbance is in store. When Cat takes a break in Italy, Isabel agrees to run her delicatessen. One of the customers, she discovers, has recently had a heart transplant and is now being plagued by memories that cannot be rationally explained and which he feels do not belong to him.


Isabel is intrigued. So intrigued that she finds herself plunging headlong into another risky investigation.
...... Outer back cover.


FIRST SENTENCE (Chapter 1): The man in the brown Harris tweed overcoat - double-breasted with three small leather-covered buttons on the cuff - made his way slowly along the street that led down the spine of Edinburgh.


MEMORABLE MOMENT (Page 160): Guilt, she thought, can sometimes be measured in physical quantities. A heavy drinker might measure his guilt in gallons or litres; a glutton in inches round the waist; and the editor of a journal in terms of the height of the stack of manuscripts awaiting her attention.


MY THOUGHTS: I know, I know, as I'm rapidly discovering I don't like the books of Alexander McCall Smith but with a title like Friends, Lovers, Chocolate how could I resist?


Sadly, still not to my taste, I once again found this a disappointing read.


Rambling at best, incoherent at worse, I'm afraid to say I even found the supposedly philosophical tone of the book to be quite moralising, many of the characters (especially main character Isabel) pompous and patronising.


And that wasn't the worst of it. Largely unbelievable, suspend disbelief all ye who turn these pages, with several strands to the story, the author kept unexpectedly going off at a tangent often leaving threads abruptly and without conclusion.


Perhaps best read after The Sunday Philosophy Club, part one in the series. Hmm, maybe but I suspect not.


KEEP IT OR NOT?: Ex library stock, I'm sure it won't surprise you to know I shan't be keeping this.

13 comments:

Mama Zen said...

And, it sounded so good!

Kelly said...

I bet I would like it. I'm thinking you should give up on Alexander McCall Smith, though! ;)

Brandileigh2003 (Blkosiners Book Blog) said...

Sorry you were disappointed, but brownie points for the title at least.
Thanks for review,
Brandi from Blkosiner’s Book Blog

Arti said...

The storyline sounded pretty interesting but what a shame it could not be up to your expectations.
Have a nice week ahead Tracy:)

GMR said...

Wow...that's a pretty detailed description of the guy's coat! I'm guessing that's from the detective, right? ^_^

DMS said...

The title had such promise! Sorry it wasn't enjoyable for you.

~Jess

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Oh I wouldn't have liked characters like that. I also hate loose threads like that. Too bad the title didn't mesh with the book.

Heather said...

I'd find it difficult to pass up a book with chocolate in the title.

Suko said...

Petty, thanks for your honesty! :)

Melissa (My World...in words and pages) said...

Sorry it didn't work for you. But yes, with Chocolate in the title, you had to try. :)

naida said...

Good for you on giving it a try though. I like the title as well and the memorable moment too.

carol said...

Such a shame - the title had so much promise.

Jenners said...

I admit that the title would grab me too … as if reading it would somehow give me a piece of chocolate. We have problems...