The Uncommon Appeal of Clouds

Front Cover
Random House Large Print Publ, 2012 - Fiction - 367 pages
25 Reviews
ISABEL DALHOUSIE - Book 9

Nothing captures the charm of Edinburgh like the bestselling Isabel Dalhousie series of novels featuring the insatiably curious philosopher and woman detective. Whether investigating a case or a problem of philosophy, the indefatigable Isabel Dalhousie, one of fiction's most richly developed amateur detectives, is always ready to pursue the answers to all of life's questions, large and small.

In this latest installment of Alexander McCall Smith's endearing Isabel Dalhousie series, the Edinburgh philosopher and amateur sleuth answers an unexpected appeal from a wealthy Scottish collector who has been robbed of a valuable painting.

One afternoon over coffee at Cat's delicatessen, a friend of Isabel's shares a call for help from Duncan Munrowe. Crafty thieves have stolen a prized painting from his collection, a work by the celebrated French artist Nicolas Poussin that was earmarked for donation to the Scottish National Gallery. Munrowe has been approached by the thieves and hopes that Isabel will assist him in recovering the painting. Never one to refuse an appeal, she agrees, and discovers that the thieves may be closer to the owner than he ever would have expected.

Against the backdrop of this intriguing case, Isabel copes with life's issues, large and small. She and Jamie have begun to suspect that their three-year-old son, Charlie, might be a budding mathematical genius. What should be done about it? Then there is the question of whether Isabel should help a young couple who want to move in together—against the wishes of the girl's parents. The boyfriend is hoping Isabel might intercede.

As she wrestles with these problems, Isabel finds herself tested as a parent, a philosopher and a friend. But, as always, she manages to use the right combination of good sense, quick wits and a kind heart to come to the right solution, proving once again why Isabel Dalhousie has become one of Alexander McCall Smith's most beloved characters.


From the Hardcover edition.

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It has a plot even though it's quite slim. - Goodreads
Even the ending was wishy-washy. - Goodreads
I wondered if Smith was tired of writing the series. - Goodreads

Review: The Uncommon Appeal of Clouds (Isabel Dalhousie #9)

User Review  - Shannon - Goodreads

I need to get over it and just drop this series - Isabel has become just so, so boring since the first book. There are multiple pages of her 'daydreaming' while in the midst of a conversation that ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ritaer - LibraryThing

Isabel is drawn into an art theft that may be within the family, while inadvertently alienating Grace on the subject of teaching Charlie maths. Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Alexander McCall Smith is the author of the beloved, bestselling No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, the Isabel Dalhousie series, the Portuguese Irregular Verbs series, the 44 Scotland Street series, and the Corduroy Mansions series. He is also the author of numerous children’s books. He is professor emeritus of medical law at the University of Edinburgh and has served with many national and international organizations concerned with bioethics. He was born in what is now known as Zimbabwe and taught law at the University of Botswana. He lives in Scotland. Visit his website at www.alexandermccallsmith.com.

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