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In a Time of Distance
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About the Author

Alexander McCall Smith is the author of the highly successful No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series, which has sold over twenty-five million copies. Since then he has devoted his time to the writing of fiction and has seen his various series of books translated into over forty-six languages and become bestsellers throughout the world. These include the 44 Scotland Street novels, first published as a serial novel in the Scotsman, the Isabel Dalhousie novels, the Von Igelfeld series and the Corduroy Mansions novels.

Iain McIntosh has illustrated many of Alexander McCall Smith's books, including the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency and 44 Scotland Street series.

Reviews

'His poetic voice is conversational, companionable, friendly. A "maker of beautiful books," he writes, "understands that text/ should whisper to us its message,/ Like a confiding friend,/Not in the trumpet tones/ Of the strident, the polemical/ But gently, tactfully/ In the private places of exchange/ Where the loud and the angry/ Have no wish to linger." It is such books, books like this one, that in a time of strident and dishonest polemics readers should attend to with a feeling ear'

-- Allan Massie * The Scotsman *

'The many admirers of the fiction of Alexander McCall Smith will be totally charmed by a book of poems he has produced. He reveals the same genial, quietly wise persona, whether offering gentle philosophy about life, writing about the seven hills of Edinburgh or running an elegant series of sonnets'

* The Herald *

'The many admirers of the fiction of Alexander McCall Smith will be totally charmed by a book of poems he has produced. He reveals the same genial, quietly wise persona, whether offering gentle philosophy about life, writing about the seven hills of Edinburgh or running an elegant series of sonnets'

-- Lesley Duncan * Herald, Poem of the Day (The Gentleness of Whales) *

'A book to treasure and return to through the year and across the years. All the poems inspire reflection, and an empathetic urge to take in the world through the eyes of others'

* LoveReading *

'McCall Smith never beats the big drum or shouts his wares in the marketplace. His poetic voice is conversational, companionable, friendly'

* Yorkshire Post *

'I had no idea the much-loved novelist AMS wrote poetry until a beautiful meditation dropped into my inbox during the strange days of Big Lockdown ... If you had never read one of his novels, these poems would make you love a writer whose optimism and grace give you hope for the world, 'its beauty revealed afresh''

* Daily Mail *

'Explores a wide array of themes including journeys, books, animals and places in what would be deemed light verse. The stand-out works in this collection speak volumes in our volatile, Covid-19 afflicted world. The tile poem beautifully portrays how the pandemic has allowed us the opportunity to reconnect with a true sense of happiness. Offers a cosy form of escapism through poetry that's easily accessible for all readers'

* Dundee Courier, Scottish Book of the Week *

'A wonderful collection of Alexander's poems which has given great comfort to us all in this rotten time we've all had'

-- Brett Wolstencroft, Daunt Books

'A moment of hope. Thank you'

-- James Naughtie, 5 x 15

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