Unusual Uses for Olive Oil (Professor Dr von Igelfeld Series Book 4) by [Smith, Alexander Mccall]Title: Unusual Uses for Olive Oil
(Professor Dr. von Igelfeld – Book 4)
Author: Alexander McCall Smith
Genre: General Fiction – Humor
Pages: 203
Rating: 3 of 5

Professor Dr. Dr. Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld’s over inflated sense of scholarly importance combines with an inappropriate amount of self-confidence in some social situations, a complete lack of self-awareness in others, and German literalness and embarrassment over emotions to make a ridiculous yet charming character. His pointless adventures in cycles of loosely-connected short stories amuse, entertain, and poke gentle fun at German academics…at least in the first three books.

This one was a bit of a dud. It had its moments of humorous cluelessness and hubris but a lot of it felt like it was just not different enough from the jokes and petty bickering that we’d already seen in the other books (and our hero’s nemesis, Dr. Detlev Amadeus Unterholzer didn’t seem to be quite himself). If you like the original series this might be worth reading to see what our distinguished professors are up to, but it just isn’t as good as the original Two and a Half Pillars of Wisdom trilogy.

Also, this is my 12th book in the TBR Pile Challenge. I read my two alternates instead of the first two on the original list, so I may still read those, but I’ve finished enough books to complete the challenge!

9 thoughts on “Not-so-triumphant Return

    1. I’m only doing this one and the Back to the Classics challenge (just finished reading the last book, but haven’t reviewed it yet). I also have my personal annual goal of at least 100 books averaging at least 300 pages each, and I met that back in late September…I’m on a roll this year!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Not really. Last year I wanted to get to 150 but realized I was putting pressure on myself and reading a more manga that I wanted just to puff my numbers. So this year I dropped any desire. I should be over 100 books this years and I’m ok with that. Next year is probably going to be a different matter in terms of numbers. I suspect a sharp drop, which will mean I have to really look at even my unofficial expectations…

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      2. I totally understand that! I purposely set my goal at a level that’s fairly easily attainable for me so that I don’t feel pressured. Plans to read longer books next year or just a busier non-reading schedule?

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      3. Work is now a regular 45hr week instead of the 35-37 that I was used to at my old job. Plus life just seems to get busier unless I’m right on top of it cutting down left and right. There is only so much cutting that can be done before I turn into someone I don’t want to be 🙂

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