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The Quiet Side of Passion : Isabel Dalhousie : Isabel Dalhousie Novels - Alexander McCall Smith

The Quiet Side of Passion : Isabel Dalhousie

Isabel Dalhousie Novels

Paperback Published: 12th June 2018
ISBN: 9781408709436
Number Of Pages: 256

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The latest novel in Alexander McCall Smith's much-loved Isabel Dalhousie series, which have sold over 1.7m copies.

The nursery gate is a good place for parents to meet one another. As the mother of two small children, Isabel finds herself enlarging her circle of friends to include other parents. She meets Patricia, an Irishwoman, a musician and the single mother of a small boy called Basil Phelps. Isabel hears from her husband, Jamie, that this child is allegedly the unacknowledged son of a well-known Edinburgh organist, Basil Phelps.

Patricia takes to Isabel, but Isabel is suspicious - there is something about Patricia that she does not quite like, but, with her usual attention to moral obligation, she does her best to be civil and supportive. That is until she sees Patricia with a mysterious, freckled man. Isabel gets it into her head that this is Patricia's lover, and that he must be the real father of young Basil. When further discoveries are made, everything is turned on its head.

Despite Jamie's discouragement, Isabel decides that she is going to get to the bottom things. Yet, when the truth is finally revealed, it seems that Isabel has misjudged Patricia; in fact, she has misjudged just about everybody.

About the Author

Alexander McCall Smith is the author of over eighty books on a wide array of subjects, including the award-winning The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. He is also the author of the Isabel Dalhousie novels and the world's longest-running serial novel, 44 Scotland Street. His books have been translated into forty-six languages. Alexander McCall Smith is Professor Emeritus of Medical Law at the University of Edinburgh and holds honorary doctorates from thirteen universities.

Industry Reviews

Isabel Dalhousie's charm is undeniable * Sunday Times *
Delightful * Sunday Telegraph *
McCall Smith's greatest gift as a writer - and God knows this is just one of many - is that he can write likeable characters * New Statesman *
This touching, humorous, tale proved an extremely enjoyable read * Women Together *

as always, a delightful read


"Cat's life, then, was not an example of the examined life of which philosophers have long written; Isabel's life, by contrast, was a life lived under a moral microscope." The Quiet Side of Passion is the twelfth book in the Isabel Dalhousie series by popular British author, Alexander McCall Smith. Isabel Dalhousie, philosopher, wife to Jamie, mother to Charlie and Magnus, helpful aunt to the ever-demanding (and often selfish) Cat, and editor of the Review of Applied Ethics, is feeling the pressure. The demands on her time are many, and with each additional one, she is feeling the strain on her inner resources. At the University in response to a rather arrogant summons from her long-time nemesis, Professor Lettuce, an accidental meeting presents a possible solution to one aspect of her busy life. Jamie has two suggestions for further improvements, and before long, Isabel is feeling the benefits of her lightened load. But these initially-hard-working young women (Antonia the au pair, Claire the assistant) soon prove to complicate matters even more, actually causing more problems than they solve. On top of all this, some gossip that Jamie shares with her, together with a chance sighting in a restaurant, see Isabel mounting an unwise pursuit in a dangerous area. As usual, Jamie knows he cannot deter her, knowing her so well: "'Obstinate, interventionist, nosy, yet…yet one who does the right thing – where lesser mortals…' and here he pointed at himself, 'where lesser mortals fear to tread'"; but Isabel is troubled by how the matter is eventually resolved. Daily events set off Isabel's musings, presenting ever more potential topics for future issues of the Review: robots and mercy, loyalty and betrayal, (raw milk) cheese and freedom, the morals of music. Topics of discussion include snobbishness, gossip, Atilla the Hun, tattoos, and hunting. And Professor Lettuce's capacity for effrontery never ceases to astonish. As always, a delightful read.



Fabulous as always, a lovely tongue in cheek narrative


Great lightweight read, a lovely narrative about a Scottish family. I couldn't put it down.

Perth Australia


The Quiet Side of Passion : Isabel Dalhousie

5.0 2


ISBN: 9781408709436
ISBN-10: 1408709430
Series: Isabel Dalhousie Novels
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 256
Published: 12th June 2018
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.3  x 2.2
Weight (kg): 0.36
Edition Number: 1

Alexander McCall Smith

About the Author

Alexander McCall Smith is one of the world’s most prolific and most popular authors. His career has been a varied one: for many years he was a professor of Medical Law and worked in universities in the United Kingdom and abroad. Then, after the publication of his highly successful No 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, which has sold over twenty million copies, he devoted his time to the writing of fiction and has seen his various series of books translated into over forty languages and become bestsellers through the world.

The series include the Scotland Street novels, first published as a serial novel in The Scotsman, the Sunday Philosophy Club series starring Isabel Dalhousie, the von Igelfeld series, and the new Corduroy Mansions novels.

Alexander is also the author of collections of short stories, academic works, and over thirty books for children. He has received numerous awards for his writing, including the British Book Awards Author of the Year Award in 2004 and a CBE for service to literature in 2007. He holds honorary doctorates from nine universities in Europe and North America.

Alexander McCall Smith lives in Edinburgh. He is married to a doctor and has two daughters.

Visit Alexander McCall Smith's Booktopia Author Page

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