Starring the brilliant but bumbling Professor Doctor Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld, The Finer Points of Sausage Dogs is a wonderfully entertaining showcase for [Alexander McCall] Smith's award-winning wit. Invited to lecture in America, von Igelfeld envisions a visit to California or New York. Instead, he finds himself at the University of Arkansas. Still, in von Igelfeld's view, one American state is very like another. An expert philologist, von Igelfeld prepares to deliver a talk on verbs, until he makes a grim discovery - he has been mistaken for a German master of veterinary science who has recently passed away. One man at the reception is quick to point this out. But von Igelfeld explains that since Germans are so efficient, they sometimes publish obituaries before a person's demise. Before long, he takes the podium and faces an attentive crowd expecting to hear some fine points on the nature of sausage dogs. (back cover of audio book)
The Finer Points Of Sausage Dogs by Alexander McCall Smith tells of the humorous adventures of Professor von Igelfeld, an intellectual snob and social misfit. During his adventures in this book, he experiences situations with sausage dogs; a co-worker's revenge and continuous rivalry; religious leaders in Rome; relics that get misplaced; a reporter; and a lecture cruise that does not meet his satisfaction. Smith's humor is clearly shown through the words and actions of his characters. And von Igelfeld finds that his words and actions will often return to haunt him in ways he least expects.
I found this book mildly interesting and occasionally I did find myself laughing (and groaning) at the antics of the main characters. However, The Finer Points Of Sausage Dogs was more of an entertaining diversion during my commute to work this past week than a book that held my attention throughout the entire reading. I really liked the narrator (Paul Hecht) and I appreciated the fact that this book had more than one story to be told about the foolish misadventures of a character that didn't have a clue about the real world. Even though this book is part of a series based on the character of Professor Dr. von Igelfeld, I think I will be satisfied with reading just this one for the time being.