Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

Title: The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie
Author: Alan Bradley
Reviewer: Karen
Genre: Adult Mystery
Rating: Fabulous
Alerts/Warnings: Low Swearing, Murder (but it is a murder mystery after all)
Premise: "In his first novel, Alan Bradley introduces one of the most singular and engaging heroines in recent fiction: eleven-year-old Flavia de Luce, an aspiring chemist with a passion for poison." "It is the summer of 1950 - and a series of inexplicable events has struck Buckshaw, the decaying English mansion that Flavia's family calls home. A dead bird is found on the doorstep, a postage stamp bizarrely pinned to its beak. Hours later, Flavia finds a man lying in the cucumber patch and watches him as he takes his dying breath. For Flavia, who is both appalled and delighted, life begins in earnest when murder comes to Buckshaw"--Book jacket.
Opinions: I could NOT put this book down. I read it in under one day (even while dealing with two children and morning sickness). I was intrigued how this book could be in the Adult section or the library when the main character is eleven. Falvia is not your normal eleven year. Though she still plays pranks on her sisters like any other kid, she is intelligent beyond her years. Her passion for chemistry, and her own private chemistry lab, allow Flavia the ability to learn at her own pace. Her focus on chemistry gives Flavia a unique look on life that allows her to see truth where others do not. Her spunk as a pre-teen allows her to get into situations that, not only provide her with information important to solving the murder long before the adults, but also provide a hilarious flare.

Alan Bradley does a fantastic job creating a heroine that can rival Ms. Marple and would even give Sherlock Holmes a run for his money. As a fan of mysteries I look forward to reading much more from this author.

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