readers unite in honour of alexander mccall smith's birthday

One of the most memorable fictional heroines of our time, Mma Precious Ramotswe is Botswana’s leading female private detective – and she has charmed her way into all our hearts.

Adored by fans around the world, this “traditionally built” heroine has made author Alexander McCall Smith, the creator of the best-selling No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, a household name.

Now, in recognition of the beautiful way Alexander’s writing has brought the heat, fun and big-heartedness of Botswana into millions of homes around the globe, we’re inviting book-lovers everywhere to help us name a rhino after the warm, witty and wise Mma Ramotswe.

Readers would like to name one of Botswana’s newest rhinos Precious Ramotswe in honour of Alexander’s birthday – to show their appreciation and thank him for all the joy he’s given them. Will you help?

We want to raise £7,000 by August 2018, Alexander’s birthday. So we’re asking everyone who loves the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency books to donate just £5 ($6.60). Together, we can do it – and make Precious very proud.


Every penny raised will go towards monitoring Precious Ramotswe Rhino and keeping her – and every one of our precious rhinos – safe and well. And you can enjoy updates on how Precious Ramotswe Rhino is faring on our website news pages.

Thank you Alexander!

Find out more about Alexander and his books on

Image © Chris Watt

Image © Chris Watt

“I am just a tiny person in Africa, but there is a place for me, and for everybody, to sit down on this earth and touch it and call it their own.”
— Alexander McCall Smith

which rhino will you choose to name 'precious ramotswe'?

Meet three very special rhinos we have handpicked for this honour. These are all white rhino females, which have calves or are of breeding age, and live in the Okavango Delta in Botswana. All of these beautiful ladies are of a comfortable build, wise and clever, just like Precious Ramotswe. 

Rhino 1

Precious rhino 1.jpg

Rhino 2


Rhino 3



The rhino with the most votes by the closing date will be named Precious Ramotswe.
We will send Alexander an Adoption certificate for Precious Ramotswe Rhino and
share news of her adventures on our news pages. You too can adopt Precious.