Monday, December 28, 2009

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley wasn't what I expected, but in a good way. I first saw something about it Bookmarks magazine and liked the title and cover. I had made a note of it at the time, but then forgot about it until I was at the library a few weeks ago. I grabbed it without really looking at it. I finally picked it up to read this weekend, and cracked up reading the back: "[E]leven-year-old Flavia de Luce, an aspiring chemist with a passion for poison". Uh, what? Why has this been sitting on my couch for a week?
I immediately dove in and loved it. It's a mystery, with Flavia as the main character and detective. It's set in England in the 1950s. It's part Agatha Christie, part Lemony Snicket, and part something else wonderful. Flavia is hilarious, and I can't want for more of her. This is supposed to be the first in a series. The plot was fresh and entertaining, Flavia was wonderful, and it has that same quality that A Series of Unfortunate Events does, where everything is of this world, yet has a somewhat other worldly feel, where children are brilliant at solving crimes and having adventures. People who like mysteries or Lemony Snicket will like this, but I would say if you like anything quirky and funny, give this one a try!
This also counts toward the Countdown Challenge (for 2009) and the Four Month Challenge (read a book by a Canadian author).

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