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Summary

The story revolves around the comings and goings at No. 44 Scotland Street, a fictitious building in a real street in Edinburgh. Immediately recognisable are the Edinburgh chartered surveyor, stalwart of the Conservative Association, who dreams of membership of Scotland's most exclusive golf club. We have the pushy Stockbridge mother, and her prodigiously talented five-year-old son, who is making good progress with the saxophone and with his Italian. Then there is Domenica Macdonald who is that type of Edinburgh lady who sees herself as a citizen of a broader intellectual world. In McCall Smith's hands such characters retain charm and novelty, simultaneously arousing both mirth and empathy. 44 Scotland Street is vintage McCall Smith, tackling issues of trust and honesty, snobbery and hypocrisy, love and loss, but all with great lightness of touch. Clever, elegant and funny, this is a novel that provides huge entertainment but which is underpinned by the moral dilemmas of everyday life and the characters' struggles to resolve them.

©2005 Alexander McCall Smith (P)2011 Hachette Digital

What listeners say about 44 Scotland Street

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A gentle read full of delicious humour

A great book if you are looking for a gentle read. The book is full of interesting characters, subtly and amusingly portrayed - with hints of the completely absurd, which just add to the fun. I can't wait to read/listen to the next one!

4 people found this helpful

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Great observations beautifully weaved into fun stories

Modern classic! Gentle, whimsical and very compelling. Such a fun book full of great observations! Really liked the narrator, the voice can make it break the book but Hillary was an excellent choice. Loved no1 ladies detective agency and think I'm going to love this series just as much, have ordered the next one already!

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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accents

would have liked to have listened to the story bring told in a scottish accent

8 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Even Better than book.

Wonderfully quirky tale of everyday life in Edinburgh with remarkably well-drawn characters and fine narrating.

2 people found this helpful

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heart warming and witty!

I just loved it from beginning to end. Lovely characters that you get to know

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Irritating narration + old fashioned judgements

Rather disgusted (reading this in 2020) by the anti/judgemental attitudes towards gay people and old fashioned views on marriage. frankly I don't want to continue giving this book my attention so I'm stopping with 9 hours left to go. Also found the narrator's emphasis and way of speaking annoying, sorry! I'm sure you're someone else's dream narrator!

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so enjoyed this book

loved the book and listened to it in nearly one sitting.The characters are alive and I can see it all happening in my head as I was listening. The narration for me was perfect, as Hillary Neille, sounded as if she was enjoying reading the book out loud and each character came over so well.I was sorry it ended and will be purchasing more of 44 Scotland Street.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Pleasure to listen to on Audible

Had not read or listened to Alexander McCall Smith until I heard him on Radio 4 last week.
What a pleasure this book was with it's interesting characters and excellent narration. Now for the next in series.

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beautiful story

insightful, very well written and read. short chapters kept interest in the carefully crafted characters

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A good listen

typical of Alexander McCall Smith books. lovely book nice pace, nothing exciting in the storyline.

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Profile Image for Ruth
  • Ruth
  • 04-08-13

Blah

What would have made 44 Scotland Street better?

getting to the point quicker - it rambled on and on about nothing of importance

What could Alexander McCall Smith have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

cut out at least 50 chapters. Created characters that had at least some redeeming qualities - they were all vapid, boring , self obsessed and insipid.

Which character – as performed by Hilary Neville – was your favorite?

she did a great job considering how little she had to work with

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

not really

Any additional comments?

completely mis represented in the reviews. Did these people actually listen to this drivel??