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Extended Audio Sample The Unbearable Lightness of Scones Audiobook, by Alexander McCall Smith Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (2,831 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Alexander McCall Smith Narrator: Robert Ian MacKenzie Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The 44 Scotland Street Series Release Date: January 2010 ISBN: 9781440784361
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Featuring all the quirky characters we have come to know and love, The Unbearable Lightness of Scones, finds Bertie, the precocious six-year-old, still troubled by his rather overbearing mother, Irene, but seeking his escape in the Cub Scouts. Matthew is rising to the challenge of married life with newfound strength and resolve, while Domenica epitomizes the loneliness of the long-distance intellectual. Cyril, the gold-toothed star of the whole show, succumbs to the kind of romantic temptation that no dog can resist and creates a small problem, or rather six of them, for his friend and owner Angus Lordie.

With his customary deftness, Alexander McCall Smith once again brings us an absorbing and entertaining tale of some of Scotland's most quirky and beloved characters—all set in the beautiful, stoic city of Edinburgh.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “It is impossible to come away from an Alexander McCall Smith novel without a smile on the lips and warm fuzzies in the heart.” Chicago Sun-Times
  • “Delightful…Sweet…Graceful…Wonderful…Alexander McCall Smith writes faster than most people read, which is good news for [his] legions of fans who rarely have to go more than a few months without a new fix of his gentle but powerfully addicting fiction.”

    Entertainment Weekly

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chez | 2/17/2014

    " loved the characters, never wanted it to end. Will be looking for the next in the series, so hurry up and write it "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah | 2/7/2014

    " I probably shouldn't have jumped directly into the middle of this series, but this was the book I acquired. I like Smith's dry humor, and the vivid characters he created, but there really wasn't a story line running through the entire book. It's more like a continuing look at these characters lives as they evolve. From a character standpoint I enjoyed it, but I couldn't really find the "story." "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Katharine Holden | 2/1/2014

    " Rather silly. Cardboard characters. Full of unfunny fat jokes. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 1/30/2014

    " Book number 5 is just as good as the rest. You gotta love Bertie! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Katie | 1/29/2014

    " I'm enjoying this, but definitely a "light" read. Not my favorite... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Adrienne | 1/28/2014

    " If I just rate books by how much I enjoy reading them then, I give both the Scotland Street books and the Ladies No. 1 Detective Agency books highest marks. They are just so charming! Nothing much happens, but I am so fond of the characters & just happily slide right in to their little worlds: worlds populated with very nice, very quirky people! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lauraileen | 1/26/2014

    " Love, love, love almost all of the Alexander McCall Smith books, especially the No. 1 Ladies Detective Series and the 44 Scotland Street series! Can't wait for the next installment of both series! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jodee | 1/17/2014

    " Another Wonderful addition to this series. Loved it "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Claire | 12/3/2013

    " Really enjoyable. I haven't read the other books in the series, though I plan to. The series is written in a Dickensian, serial style with a large cast of interesting characters. You never get bored and there's a lot to think about. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Erin | 10/7/2013

    " Still not my favorite series. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ritu | 6/17/2013

    " Another book by Alexander McCall Smith that was interesting, light and a good read. A bit of philosophy, humor, good portrayal of characters. I love all books written by this author and this book did not disappoint me. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 pati | 5/29/2013

    " Bruce is cured of his narcissism, Angus and Domenica steal a blue Spode teacup and then return it and Bertie's psychotherapist leaves Edinburgh and Matthew is washed out to sea on his honeymoon - only to be saved by a dolphin! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mary | 2/23/2013

    " I love this series that comes from a newspaper serial in an Edinburgh newspaper. As with the previous volumes, it made me laugh out loud. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jacque | 12/24/2012

    " This series by Smith is beginning to remind me of Wodehouse. Delightful stories with quirky Scottish characters. Light, fun reading without lowering IQ. Highly recommended. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jennifer | 11/8/2012

    " This is my favorite McCall Smith series. However, I didn't like it as much as the earlier ones. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Anne-Louise | 10/22/2012

    " This series is like comfort food - Love all his stuff "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 chris | 7/18/2012

    " though i didn't like this series as much as the number 1 ladies detective agency, the characters have grown on me & i look forward to the next book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maura | 6/25/2012

    " Another in the 44 Scotland Street series with Bertie, Mathew, Domenica, Angus, etc. all of whom have become very familiar. Nice, quick snippets of each character's story with plenty of room for continuation. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jill | 6/19/2012

    " Typical of al Alexander McCall Smith's delightful light hearted and insightful novels. Amusing easy reads. Bertie continues to struggle with his domineering mother. Lard passes over. Bruce discovers there is more to life than himself!!!!. Loved it "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brittney | 4/7/2012

    " These are fun and I really enjoy the characters, but this series is dragging on a bit. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nancy | 2/24/2012

    " Fifth in the 44 Scotland Series. I really enjoy the Bertie character and what he must endure. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mccarroll | 6/13/2011

    " Read it while traveling in Scotland. Chuckled throughout the book. I love the characters.
    "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kimberly | 5/22/2011

    " I couldn't get into this so I gave up on it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jessica | 5/20/2011

    " Where's Pat? I want more Dr. Sinclair. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ann | 5/14/2011

    " I think the series ran out of gas. One of the main characters is missing in action, while the story lines of the others have lost the snap of the other books. Plus, there is the heartbreaking hope and then failure of help for poor little Bertie. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maura | 5/13/2011

    " Another in the 44 Scotland Street series with Bertie, Mathew, Domenica, Angus, etc. all of whom have become very familiar. Nice, quick snippets of each character's story with plenty of room for continuation. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Susan | 5/4/2011

    " Disappointed that Pat was dropped from the story-line... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cornelia | 4/21/2011

    " up to CD 8, from library "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laurel | 4/21/2011

    " I think the formula is melding with me and hope that the author writes daily to knock out even more of these books! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pamela | 3/31/2011

    " I love reading anything by McCall Smith. I love his gentle humour, his utter lack of meanness, his characters who almost always have some redeeming value - well, almost always. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lisa | 3/28/2011

    " Just so pleasant! This 44 Scotland Street had quite a few capers and scrapes for the cast of characters to face. I really love that Ian Rankin made an appearance! As always, a delightful break from reality. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lissa | 3/13/2011

    " Bruce reformed? Agnes and Domenica falling in love? Big Lou threw over the shyster Robbie? I'm already looking forward to the next installment! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrea | 3/5/2011

    " Good light reading for a rainy day. "

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About the Author
Author Alexander McCall Smith

Alexander McCall Smith is the New York Times bestselling author of the No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, the Isabel Dalhousie series, the Portuguese Irregular Verbs series, and the 44 Scotland Street series. He has also written numerous stand-alone novels, books for children, and nonfiction works. He is professor emeritus of medical law at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland 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.

About the Narrator

Robert Ian Mackenzie became an actor after holding a wide variety of other jobs, including everything from London policeman to water ski instructor in Greece. Since then, his acting career has encompassed straight theater, musicals, opera, films, television, voice-overs, commercials, and recorded books.