2 journalers for this copy...
The portrayal of some kinds of characters, perhaps all really, tends toward the simplistic at times, as in his suggestion that all narcissists tend to look "smug" and look at themselves in the mirror all the time. As I have known many real narcissists I know their characteristics are rather different and more interesting, really. But in the real world they also have a root of fear, of feeling like they are not good enough. It would be complicated indeed for Alexander McCall Smith to bring in all these complexities and it might take away from his unique writing style.
I also find that he makes fun of groups of which he doesn't have all that much knowledge, like vegans and nudists, but the fun is gentle and short-lived. I can live with it.
This series of books - this is only the second in the series - started out as a newspaper series, rather like old times. It's good to remember that when you read reminders in one chapter of what happened in the last - it's necessary to catch people up when writing a weekly series. The stories are based on 44 Scotland Street, a complex of several apartments, occupied by a diverse group of people. We follow each apartment's residents as they go through their lives there, interacting with others outside the apartments, of course. It appears that Smith intended to end it here, because he started moving everyone out by the end of the book, but I don't think he will end it. New people might move in and the ones who were there could still be followed as they touch bases with their former house-mates. Oh yes, there will be a third.
WILD RELEASE NOTES:
On a table inside