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The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

7 Ratings: 4.4
A book by Alan Bradley

Amazon Best of the Month, April 2009: It's the beginning of a lazy summer in 1950 at the sleepy English village of Bishop's Lacey. Up at the great house of Buckshaw, aspiring chemist Flavia de Luce passes the time tinkering in the laboratory she's inherited … see full wiki

Tags: Books
Author: Alan Bradley
Genre: Mystery & Thrillers
Publisher: Delacorte Press
7 reviews about The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie
review by . August 13, 2009
When a man is murdered at the English estate of Buckshaw, it is easily the most exciting thing that has ever happened to Flavia de Luce, a precocious budding chemist and Buckshaw's youngest resident. Eleven-year-old Flavia is determined to solve the mystery and connect the dots between the mysterious clues left behind, from the dead bird with the postage stamp on its beak, left on her doorstep, to the dying man's final word. What ensues is a hilarious, twisting journey that will attract readers …
review by . July 22, 2009
Our story begins with Flavia de Luce tied up, blindfolded, and stowed away in a closet by her mean older sisters. Isn't that how all great detectives start their story?    Set in England during the 1950's, Flavia de Luce, 11 years old, lover of all things chemistry and deadly poisonous concoctions is quite the sleuth in this tale. It all starts with a dead bird, a stamp, a missing piece of pie, and then there's that mysterious body that turns up dead in the cucumber patch out …
review by . June 07, 2009
"Whenever I was upset, I made for my sanctum sanctorum. Here, among the bottles and the beakers, I would allow myself to be enveloped by what I thought of as the Spirit of Chemistry. Here, sometimes, I would re-enact, step by step, the discoveries of the great chemists. Or I would lift down lovingly from the bookcase a volume from Tar de Luce's treasured library, such as the English translation of Antoine Lavoisier's Elements of Chemistry, printed in 1790 but whose leaves, even after a hundred and …
review by . May 21, 2009
I cant' believe this is the author's first work, in short it's really amazing, I mean a gloriously adorable kaleidoscope of words and textures and emotions, pure bliss to read! Set in 1950's England, the mystery has a rustic feel to it but is very easy to read and enjoy. It's not often that the protagonist is an eleven year old little girl, who's as feisty and cunning as it gets. Flava de Luce has a love affair with chemistry. Glass flasks and potions are more fun than hanging out and doing kid …
review by . May 18, 2009
The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie is a wonderful story about a precocious girl trying to find out who she is. Flavia would argue (probably quite vehemently) that she already KNOWS who she is - she is a chemist with two highly annoying sisters who may as well be no relation, and a distant father who seems to prefer his stamp collection over the day-to-day affairs within the house.     While these arguments certainly have their point, Flavia remains a girl on the cusp of her …
review by . May 14, 2009
Not that I want to think of myself as relatively erudite, but I think we have to admit that the quantity of literary allusions and chemical minutiae int his novel could be off-putting to some readers.    Now that you've been warned, I can say that I loved this book and am looking forward to reading more by this author.    The story is well-written and well-plotted, and filled with passages you'll want to read aloud. Here's one my favorites:     "I …
review by . April 16, 2009
This mystery focused on the life and times of Flavia de Luce is an excellent addition to the genre. The opening is strong, and I found myself immediately drawn to the (possibly homicidal) young protagonist. The book is filled with strange and not always sympathetic characters that draw the reader into Flavia's almost surreal landscape. I thought the plot was well-drawn, and even though I guessed the identity of the villain, I needed to keep reading just to learn more about how Flavia would solve …
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