Friday, October 1, 2010

Book Review: The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

I began Alan Bradley's The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie with trepidation. I remember that both my mom and my friend Jesse liked it but had reservations about the main character.

Flavia overhears her father having an argument and later that night/first thing in the morning she comes across a dying man in the garden uttering "vale".  Her father is the only suspect and is quickly arrested, leaving Flavia and her older sisters in the hands of Dogger their "jack-of-all-trades" handyman and Mrs. Mullet their housekeeper. So begins a tale of how Flavia's knowledge of chemistry, incredible sleuthing and skills of deduction enable to clear her father's name, find the real killer-as well as solve a crime from her father's childhood.

Flavia Sabine de Luce, an incredibly precocious 11 year old self taught chemist and detective. Flavia is just WAY too clever to be a believable 11 year old. At times I either pretend she was ageless or maybe 17. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie appears to be the first of  the series - the second book came out in March. Interestingly enough this past week's Booking Through Thursday question (my response here) was about whether or not people will continue to read a series if one novel is "jumping the shark" or taking a downturn. Although I found The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie a quick and easy read, it was only ok, and I have no intentions of reading any other books in the series.

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