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Mrs. Pollifax on Safari (1977)

by Dorothy Gilman

Series: Mrs. Pollifax (5)

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7922121,846 (3.81)68
"Mrs. Pollifax is the American cousin to Agatha Christie's Miss Marple."--Toronto Star Now the incredible Mrs. Pollifax has been sent on a safari to smoke out a very clever international assassin whose next target is the president of Zambia.  "Just take a lot of pictures of everyone on that safari," the CIA man told her. "One of them has to be our man." It sounded simple enough. But it wasn't. Because shortly after Mrs. Pollifax started taking pictures, someone stole her film. And right after that she was kidnapped by Rhodesian terrorists. And right after that--well, read for yourself. . .  "Mrs. Pollifax is an enchantress."--The New York Times… (more)
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» See also 68 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
Absolutely fun. Though highly improbable. Gilman didn't miss as many clues here, or maybe I just tuned in better. That last chapter was a delightful way to wrap it all up. ( )
  OutOfTheBestBooks | Sep 24, 2021 |
Listening to Mrs. P on double speed, as she meets Cyrus is the way to go if you've read it before. ( )
  Wanda-Gambling | Feb 18, 2021 |
Africa, 1970s, historical-fiction, history-and-culture, spies, assassins, romance, abduction*****

I have probably read the print copy three times, and this is the second time on audio, all this century. Emily Pollifax is a nice widow of a certain age with two children and a couple of grandchildren. And an occasional courier assignment for the CIA. Well, this WAS set in the late 1970s. That is especially evident in this mystery set in Africa. Not that paid assassins need any timeline, of course. Its a good story of a good series and even more fun to compare the political situations to those of today. All of the characters are VERY interesting.
Narrator Barbara Rosenblatt is always great with her pleasant voice and ability to differentiate characters and emotions. ( )
  jetangen4571 | Dec 20, 2020 |
If you've ever read any of the other Mrs. Pollifax mysteries you already know our heroine, Mrs. Pollifax, is an excellent gardener, expert karate expert, and part-time CIA agent. This time, she is asked to go on an African safari in order to take pictures of the participants, one of whom is a vicious assassin named Aristotle. But the first night of the safari, Mrs. Pollifax discovers that her film has been stolen. Suddenly, things are personal, and she decides she will not only take the pictures but figure out who Aristotle is. Can she do that when her fellow travelers seem so nice? What secrets might they be hiding? Before long there is a a kidnapping and a reunion with an old friend and a delightful romance scene.

The Mrs. Pollifax series by Dorothy Gilman are delightful and the perfect way to relax after a more gritty mystery. The politics are over thirty years old so don't be surprised to see some old stereotypes in this story. If you are already a Mrs. Pollifax fan, you will certainly enjoy this one too. ( )
  Olivermagnus | Jul 2, 2020 |
That grandmotherly spy Mrs. Pollifax, with her penchant for flamboyant hats and her friendly interest in everyone she meets, heads to Zambia in this fifth installment of Dorothy Gilman's series devoted to her espionage adventures. Her mission, while on safari, is to take photographs of all of her fellow travelers, as Mr. Carstairs and the CIA have it on good authority that one of them is an international assassin known as Aristotle. Things rarely go as planned on a Mrs. Pollifax mission however, and soon our redoubtable retiree finds herself kidnapped by some very dangerous people...

I have always enjoyed Mrs. Pollifax on Safari, since first reading it (along with the rest of the series then in publication) as an adolescent. First, there is our eponymous heroine, with her cheerful, upbeat, hopeful view on her fellow human beings. I am no expert on spy novels - these are, in fact, the only ones I have read - but it strikes me that this must be unusual, in the genre. Second, there is the poetic description of Zambia, and the beauties of the natural world, which would make any reader long to go on safari herself. As another reviewer has noted, the travelogue aspect of this series is one of its great charms. Third, the reader gets to witness the happy reunion with John Sebastien Farrell, whom Mrs. Pollifax met and befriended in her first adventure, The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax, and who is a favorite character. Fourth, Mrs. Pollifax's new beau, and eventual second husband, Cyrus Reed, debuts here. These factors all make this an engaging addition to the series! I see that some other reviewers felt that Dorothy Gilman failed to grasp the geopolitics of the region, during this period, but while their criticisms may indeed be just, as someone not conversant with the history, I feel ill-equipped to judge. Still, those who do know more about the subject might want to keep that in mind, when approaching the book. With that proviso, I recommend this one to anyone who has read and enjoyed the previous books in the Mrs. Pollifax series. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Apr 17, 2020 |
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It was barely eight o'clock in the morning when the telephone call came in from Algiers, but Carstairs was already at his desk high up in the CIA building in Langley, Virginia.
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She wondered if Amy Lovecraft's life had been difficult: she was a very attractive woman and must once have been lovely, but so very often beautiful women grew up lopsided or didn't grow at all. She thought there was a curious hardness about her, as if her beauty was a deceptively rich topsoil, thinly spread over rock.
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"Mrs. Pollifax is the American cousin to Agatha Christie's Miss Marple."--Toronto Star Now the incredible Mrs. Pollifax has been sent on a safari to smoke out a very clever international assassin whose next target is the president of Zambia.  "Just take a lot of pictures of everyone on that safari," the CIA man told her. "One of them has to be our man." It sounded simple enough. But it wasn't. Because shortly after Mrs. Pollifax started taking pictures, someone stole her film. And right after that she was kidnapped by Rhodesian terrorists. And right after that--well, read for yourself. . .  "Mrs. Pollifax is an enchantress."--The New York Times

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At the request of her old CIA contact, Carstairs, Emily Pollifax leaves New Jersey and her geraniums for Africa, where she battles dark forces of evil to save an African leader from assassination.
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