Welcome to 44 Scotland Street, home to some of Edinburgh's most colourful characters. There's Pat, a twenty-year-old who has recently moved into a flat with Bruce, an athletic young man with a keen awareness of his own appearance. Their neighbor, Domenica, is an eccentric and insightful widow. In the flat below are Irene and her appealing son Bertie, who is the victim of his mother’s desire for him to learn the saxophone and italian–all at the tender age of five.
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Like a ray of sunshine on a rainy day, McCall Smith has the capacity to lighten the heart, surprise the eyes and make the corners of your lips tug up involuntarily. His Maupin-esque serial novels have delighted and consoled in equal measure, and the character of Bertie, the unwilling recipient of parental pomposity, has struck a chord with thousands. The Broons and Dickens in one. -- Stuart Kelly
Alexander McCall Smith is the author of 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.