Tea Time for the Traditionally Built

Tea Time for the Traditionally Built by Alexander McCall Smith, 2010, paperback, £6.99

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This novel had me on the fence from time to time, however that may have been because I was unsure what I was getting myself into. The novel is about a woman called Mma Ramotswe, who is asked to find out who is being a traitor to their football team. Whilst Mma Ramotswe is investigating, he assistant Mma Makutsi is also having troubles with a man-stealing Violet Sepotho. Although this novel was good for escapism as it is set in Botswana, Africa, I cannot help but think that this novel was dated. I understand that  it is just a story, but to highlight that women don’t like football and cook their husbands meals for them after work, I believe is a step too far. I persisted with the book because I was unsure if it was just a cultural difference. The novel itself was strongly led by the narrator, although sometimes I felt that the narrator needed to take a step back. It sometimes felt that the book strayed away from the subject matter and then refocused itself.

I enjoyed the plot, as it was fun and light, something in which I was looking for in a book at the time. However I feel that the language was too wordy and could potentially have been halved. This would have given the novel a bit more action and potentially made it a lot more gripping. Although I enjoyed the first book in this series, I will not be reading the collection anymore as I believe the other novels will follow a similar style. At least I am now more aware of which writing styles I like and dislike. If you want to find escapism in the blazing sun and like a descriptive, narrative style, then this series just may be for you.

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