Monday, July 10, 2017

44 Scotland Street

44 Scotland Street. Alexander McCall Smith. 2005. 325 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Pat stood before the door at the bottom of the stair, reading the names underneath the buttons.

Premise/plot: 44 Scotland Street is a fictional serial set in Edinburgh, Scotland. Most of the characters live, you guessed it, at 44 Scotland Street in an apartment building. Most of the characters--though not all, by any means--are neighbors. (Other characters are connected through jobs or other common interests.)

The character readers meet first is Pat. She's a college-aged student having her second "gap year." She's recently become employed at an art gallery. Her boss is Matthew. Her new roommate is Bruce. Pat becomes very good friends with her neighbor, a widow, Domenica. The most entertaining characters, however, may be Irene, Stuart, and their child, Bertie. Entertaining, however, might not be the best word. Poor Bertie!

My thoughts: Does anything much happen in this serialized novel? Not really. Sure, there's a bit of a misunderstanding about a painting at the gallery. And this misunderstanding moves the plot forward a bit--in awkward and sometimes charming ways. But more than anything it's about the ordinary moments lived by ordinary people. The writing is engaging enough, but, not in your face LITERARY PROSE. I had three favorite characters: Angus Lordie, Domenica, and Bertie.

© 2017 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 comment:

Mike@Bit About Britain said...

Sounds like one to forget to remember!