The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency

18 books in series
4.5 out of 5 stars 1,659 ratings

The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency Summary

Wayward daughters. Missing Husbands. Philandering partners. Curious conmen. If you've got a problem, and no one else can help you, then pay a visit to Precious Ramotswe, Botswana's only - and finest - female private detective.

Her methods may not be conventional, and her manner not exactly Miss Marple, but she's got warmth, wit, and canny intuition on her side, not to mention Mr J.L.B. Maketoni, the charming proprietor of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors.

And Precious is going to need them all as she sets out on the trail of a missing child, a case that tumbles our heroine into a hotbed of strange situations and more than a little danger.

Delightfully different, The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency offers a captivating glimpse of an unusual world.

©1998 Alexander McCall Smith (P)2003 Isis Publishing Ltd
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  • Book 1

    • The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency

    • The No 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 1
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Hilary Neville
    • Length: 6 hrs and 37 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 151
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 114
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 115

    Wayward daughters. Missing Husbands. Philandering partners. Curious conmen. If you've got a problem, and no one else can help you, then pay a visit to Precious Ramotswe, Botswana's only - and finest - female private detective. Her methods may not be conventional, and her manner not exactly Miss Marple, but she's got warmth, wit and canny intuition on her side, not to mention Mr J.L.B. Maketoni, the charming proprietor of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • A Pleasant Renewal of an Old Aquaintance

    • By Frances on 12-09-09

    Regular price: £24.69

  • Book 2

    • Tears of the Giraffe

    • The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 2
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Hilary Neville
    • Length: 6 hrs and 19 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 92
    • Performance
      4 out of 5 stars 65
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 65

    Meet the one and only Precious Ramotswe - the engaging and sassy owner of Botswana's only detective agency. Mma Ramotswe is facing a new challenge: resolving a mother's pain for her son who is long lost on the African plains. Mma's own impending marriage to the most gentlemanly of men, Mr J.L.B. Matekoni, the promotion of her secretary to the dizzy heights of assistant detective, and the arrival of new members to the Matekoni family.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • A worthy sequel

    • By Frances on 30-10-09

    Regular price: £23.39

  • Book 3

    • Morality for Beautiful Girls

    • The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 3
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Hilary Neville
    • Length: 6 hrs and 13 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 69
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 49
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 48

    Mma Ramotswe, daughter of the late Obed Ramotswe, is now the announced fiancée of Mr J. L. B. Matekoni. It is a fine match; she is the founder and owner of The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency and he is the proprietor of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors. But Precious Ramotswe is not as happy as she should be under the circumstances. The Detective Agency is struggling with its finances and Mr J. L. B. Matekoni is unusually low and neglecting his garage.

    • 4 out of 5 stars
    • A good listen...

    • By Carole on 30-09-10

    Regular price: £23.39

  • Book 4

    • The Kalahari Typing School for Men

    • The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 4
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Hilary Neville
    • Length: 5 hrs and 41 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 57
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 37
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 38

    Precious Ramotswe is continuing to run her detective agency from the garage of her fiancé, Mr J. L. B. Matakoni. Plans for their wedding need to be made - but when, if ever, will they wed? Intriguing cases present themselves and Mma Ramotswe juggles new clients with her usual formidable talent. However, when her first-class assistant Mma Makutsi decides to expand the agency by opening a much-needed typing school for men, things become complicated.

    • 4 out of 5 stars
    • Continuing to be pleasant

    • By Amazon Customer on 17-05-18

    Regular price: £23.39

  • Book 5

    • The Full Cupboard of Life

    • The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 5
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Hilary Neville
    • Length: 6 hrs and 9 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 53
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 30
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 30

    Mma Ramotswe is still engaged to Mr. J. L. B. Matekoni and wonders when a day for the wedding will be named. But she is anxious to avoid putting too much pressure on her fiancé, for indeed he has other things on his mind - notably a frightening request from the pushy matron of the Orphan Farm. Mma Ramotswe herself has weighty matters to address. She has been approached by a wealthy lady and asked to check up on several suitors. Are these men just interested in her money?

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Enjoy the sunshine!

    • By Alathia on 19-03-16

    Regular price: £23.39

  • Book 6

    In the Company of Cheerful Ladies cover art
    Not Available on Audible.co.uk

    There are many reasons why a book might be unavailable.

    Sometimes a book goes temporarily out of print - and sometimes no audio version has ever been recorded. Audible wants to give you the most complete selection we can and we'll keep adding series and filling in gaps as quickly as possible.

  • Book 7

    • Blue Shoes and Happiness

    • The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 7
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Hilary Neville
    • Length: 7 hrs and 31 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 47
    • Performance
      5 out of 5 stars 26
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 28

    Blue Shoes and Happiness brings more adventures for Precious Ramotswe and her fine assistant Mma Makutsi. They encounter a cobra in the office, complaints of faulty blood-pressure readings at the medical clinic, a superstitious group of farm workers, and it looks like Aunty Emang, advice columnist in the local newspaper, may not be what she seems.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • As ever!

    • By Bazz on 28-07-17

    Regular price: £25.49

  • Book 8

    • The Good Husband of Zebra Drive

    • The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 8
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 6 hrs and 56 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 55
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 35
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 34

    Precious Ramotswe, the ample and good-natured owner of the No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency, is experiencing staffing difficulties. Her relationship with her assistant, Mma Makutsi, is strained. But the work of the agency must continue. Mr J. L .B. Matekoni becomes involved in the agency's work when he investigates an errant husband. But can a man investigate such matters as competently as one of the ladies?

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • i was transported to Botswana

    • By Dina on 14-05-17

    Regular price: £24.69

  • Book 9

    • The Miracle at Speedy Motors

    • The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 9
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 6 hrs and 36 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 64
    • Performance
      5 out of 5 stars 39
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 40

    Alongside day-to-day matters - such as Mma Makutsi's dowry negotiations - there are more difficult problems for Mma Ramotswe to solve.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Wonderful to listen to

    • By Jennifer on 22-07-09

    Regular price: £25.49

  • Book 10

    • Tea Time for the Traditionally Built

    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 6 hrs and 55 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 57
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 39
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 39

    It is a troublesome fact on which even Mma Ramotswe and her assistant Mma Makutsi agree: there are things that men know and ladies do not, and vice versa. It is unfortunate, for example, when Mma Ramotswe's newest client is the owner of the ailing Kalahari Swoopers, that one thing lady detectives know little about is football.

    • 3 out of 5 stars
    • Interesting

    • By Shirley on 04-09-16

    Regular price: £16.49

  • Book 11

    • The Double Comfort Safari Club

    • No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 6 hrs and 39 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 78
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 46
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 46

    Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi are called to a safari lodge in Botswana's Okavango Delta to carry out a delicate mission on behalf of a former guest. The Okavango makes Precious appreciate once again the beauty of her homeland: it is a paradise of teeming wildlife, majestic grasslands and sparkling water.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Great book

    • By Jane on 01-12-15

    Regular price: £13.29

  • Book 12

    The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party cover art
    Not Available on Audible.co.uk

    There are many reasons why a book might be unavailable.

    Sometimes a book goes temporarily out of print - and sometimes no audio version has ever been recorded. Audible wants to give you the most complete selection we can and we'll keep adding series and filling in gaps as quickly as possible.

  • Book 13

    • The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection

    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 8 hrs and 48 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 136
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 96
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 94

    Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi have always relied on the advice of the classic guide to their trade, The Principles of Private Detection. But who is the eminent author, Mr Clovis Andersen, and what if he was to come to Botswana? That seems a very unlikely possibility, and yet… When Mr Andersen visits Botswana on holiday, he is delighted and intrigued to stumble across a roadside sign that reveals the existence of the No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency.

    • 4 out of 5 stars
    • Another delightful instalment

    • By Ms. C. T. Bell on 01-12-13

    Regular price: £16.99

  • Book 14

    • The Minor Adjustment Beauty Salon

    • Book 14 in The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 8 hrs and 23 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 124
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 111
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 111

    As Botswana awaits the familiar blessing of the rains and their eternal cycle, upheaval is taking place at the No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency. Not only is Mr J. L. B. Matekoni attempting to reform himself into a modern husband but, following her marriage to Phuti Radiphuti, Mma Makutsi has joyful news.With the arrival of an heir to the Double Comfort furniture empire and Mma Makutsi busy with motherhood, cobras and a senior aunt, Mma Ramotswe must grapple alone with tea-making, detective work and a new uncertainty.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • A pleasure to listen to

    • By Jan on 13-12-13

    Regular price: £16.99

  • Book 15

    • The Handsome Man's De Luxe Café

    • No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 15
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 8 hrs and 5 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 140
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 129
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 124

    Even the arrival of her baby can't hold Mma Makutsi back from success in the workplace, and so no sooner than she becomes a full partner in the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency - in spite of Mma Ramotswe's belated claims that she is only 'an assistant full partner' - she also launches a new enterprise of her own: the Handsome Man's De Luxe Café. Grace Makutsi is a lady with a business plan, but who could predict temperamental chefs, drunken waiters, and more?

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Why a change in pronunciation of Phuti's name?

    • By Jenny J on 30-01-16

    Regular price: £18.99

  • Book 16

    • The Woman Who Walked in Sunshine: No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 16

    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 7 hrs and 35 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 162
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 147
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 146

    The latest instalment of the beloved and best-selling series - as endearing and delectable as ever! Business is slow at the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, so at Mma Makutsi’s suggestion, Mma Ramotswe is persuaded to take her first-ever holiday. But just as she’s about to depart, a new client arrives: a young woman whose father was considered a hero in Botswana but whose reputation is now being called into question.

    • 4 out of 5 stars
    • Always a pleasure

    • By Janice on 15-07-16

    Regular price: £34.99

  • Book 17

    • Precious and Grace

    • No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 17
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 8 hrs and 10 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 272
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 256
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 257

    The delightful 17th installment of the ever-popular, perennially best-selling No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. For years Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi - codirectors of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency - have been helping people with the problems in their lives, but their partnership is tested by a curious case: a client who wants to rediscover the life she lost when she left Botswana 30 years ago.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Another delightful trip to Botswana

    • By Amazon Customer on 07-05-17

    Regular price: £27.99

  • Book 18

    • The House of Unexpected Sisters

    • No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 18
    • By: Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
    • Length: 8 hrs and 18 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 102
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 95
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 94

    The latest instalment of the irresistibly charming, perennially best-selling No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. Precious Ramotswe has always idolised her father, the late Obed Ramotswe. She feels that she knows all about his life - but does she? Sometimes our parents surprise us, and we discover that things were not quite what we thought them to be.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Superb as usual

    • By M BeeH on 05-11-17

    Regular price: £27.99