The World According to Bertie

Published 4:00 pm Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The World According to Bertie

By Alexander McCall Smith

The fourth and latest in internationally best-selling author Alexander McCall Smith’s “44 Scotland Street” series finds us once again peeking in on people we feel like we know so well.

Much is happening in Edinburgh this time around. Narcissistic Bruce is back in town with his hair that smells slightly of cloves. Could unglamourous Matthew have found the love of his life in Pat? Or not?

Eccentric portrait artist Angus Lordie’s faithful companion, Cyril, has been tossed in the dog pound for biting someone, but did he really do it? And precocious little 6-year-old Bertie is trying to adjust to life with his new baby brother, Ulysses, and having play dates with his heinous classmate Olive.

McCall Smith is one of the best writers out there today. His subtle command of the English language is such that it renders the everyday lives of average people well above average.

Armchair travelers will savor this trip to Scotland and feel as if they are sitting in Big Lou’s coffee shop right across the street from the Something Special art gallery. And I, personally, cannot wait for the fifth installment of this cozy, comfortable series.

Carol Horne is the Public Services Librarian at Albert L Scott Library.