Quick Review: THE MINOR ADJUSTMENT BEAUTY SALON by Alexander McCall Smith

I love the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency books, and number 14 came out this fall. I bought it for my husband for his birthday and just read it this weekend myself. It’s another “cozy” home run for this popular series.

This time, Grace and Phuti are expecting their first child. Will motherhood change Mma Makutsi, and will she want to stay at the agency now that she has a baby? Meanwhile, Precious is investigating two cases: an inheritance case where she needs to determine if the claimant is legitimate, and a beauty salon that is the victim of an anonymous slur campaign.

I really enjoy this series and look forward to more installments from Mr. Smith!

Kids’ Review: MISTER MAX: The Book of Lost Things by Cynthia Voigt

I’ve read a lot of Cynthia Voigt’s books, so I was excited to see she had a new novel out for kids. MISTER MAX is about a young boy living at the turn of the century. His parents have boarded a ship for India, but have disappeared, leaving Max to fend for himself with a little help from his grandmother. While Max is only about twelve, his parents are actors, and he uses their techniques and costumes to pass himself off as an adult and makes a business for himself as a detective. Max has several mysteries to solve, with the underlying one being: where are his parents??

There were some things I loved about this book. I almost always enjoy books set in the past. Max was definitely a spunky and resourceful young man. I kept reading to see how things would come out.

Other things I was not so keen about in this book were that it felt long (looks like 400 pages for paper copy), the mysteries were pretty straight-forward (though they are for kids), and there was no final resolution (apparently, this is the start of a series/trilogy). It’s hard for me to say what age to recommend this story for. Content-wise, I would say about ages 9-11, but reading stamina/level wise, I’d say more like 11-13.

Voigt is a wonderful writer and this shines throughout the story. I laughed out loud at some parts. I will most probably read the next installment because I’d like to see how Max’s story turns out.

I got mine via Net Galley for review.