Characters. Alexander McCall Smith continues his delightful Scotland Street series with an enjoyable book titled, The World According to Bertie. The cast of characters familiar to fans returns, and their relationships continue to mature. What Smith does so well is bring a character to life, place the character in everyday situations, and allow the action to help readers come to know and love the character. Bertie is a character who tugs at your heart. No matter what your relationship has been with your own parents, you will wince at the challenges this 6-year-old faces, especially at the direction of his mother, Irene. Some of the Scotland Street neighbors know each other better than others, and readers will recognize personality types found in every neighborhood. Part of the pleasure in this series entails the insights that Smith allows the characters to uncover in the course of their ordinary lives. If you’ve not read the earlier books in this series, don’t be put off at all. You can start here and be quite satisfied. After reading The World According to Bertie, you may want to go back and read the others.
Rating: Three-star (Recommended)