La’s Orchestra Saves the World

Alexander McCall Smith’s newest book doesn’t go with any of his previous series, but as is his signature strength, he drew me into a specific time and place with strong, memorable characters.
La’s Orchestra Saves the World is a charming story of La, who moves from London to a small village at the beginning of World War II. Her life has taken turns she never imagined and she suddenly finds herself living a rural life with very little to occupy her time. The things she finds to do seem very small and insignificant in her eyes, and yet by the end of the book, we understand, along with La, that what seemed small to her meant the world to others.
This charming, poignant story should definitely be on your “to read” list for 2010.