The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley


Flavia de Luce is a not your normal 11 year old girl. She is a genius, spends her days doing chemical experiments and her specialty is poisons. She lives with her widowed father and 2 sister ( whom she totally despises) in an old mansion. Everything is normal until one day there is a dead bird with a stamp in it’s beak and not long after Flavia finds a man in their cucumber bush, breathing his last. Flavia is not sad or evenly remotely depressed. She takes it upon herself to solve the crime, in which her father is the main accused.

I think I read this book in January and forgot to review it here. After reading glowing reviews about this series, I had been wanting to read this book for a long time. Finally I did, and I really did enjoy this one. Flavia, our 11 yr old poison specialist is such an adorable character. Set in the English country-side in the 1940s (I think!) this book has an interesting mystery at it’s core. But I think it is Flavia and the other characters and their dialogues and circumstances which make it most enjoyable. Though I was really put-off a little bit at the start but when the story really starts it is just un-put-down-able.

If there is a thing I truly despise, it is being addressed as “dearie.” When I write my magnum opus, A Treatise Upon All Poisons, and come to “Cyanide,” I am going to put under “Uses” the phrase “Particularly efficacious in the cure of those who call one ‘Dearie.’”
Still, one of my Rules of Life is this: When you want something, bite your tongue.
-pg. 60

I really am looking forward to the next in series.

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  1. This book has been on my TBR list since, well, since I first read about it. I’m glad you enjoyed it, Veens.

    Your new blog design looks fresh and clean. Very nice!

  2. I’ve had this one for a while and never got around to reading it. Heard such good things about it too so hopefully one day soon. Enjoyed your review.

  3. I really adored Flavia … she is a pip!! And I’m pretty sure it isn’t the 14th century … that would be too long ago! My impression is the mid-1900s (maybe 1950???? or so). I think there are two more Flavia books since this one.

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