Book Review: The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie (Flavia de Luce, #1)The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I read this book as the first book for the Twitter book club set up by my teaching buddy called the #LETbookclub (Lost English Teachers). We get together on Twitter on the 1st of each month at 8pm. I am so glad I was asked to read this book because I had not heard of this series and I would probably have never chosen it since I rarely read crime fiction nowadays (simply because my reading plate pretty full). In my late teens and twenties, though, crime fiction was pretty much all I read for a while. I had not read much of this book by the time of our first online meeting so I was not really able to comment properly and since I had bought the book as an ebook, I was not really aware of its genre – I had assumed because the protagonist was 11 years old that it was aimed at girls or young adults but this is apparently a book for adults.

Now I have read it, this is more clear, especially since the vocabulary is somewhat advanced and I suppose the subject matter (a murder investigation, essentially) although I would be happy for girls or young adults of both genders to read it since the main character, Flavia de Luce, is fantastic: precocious, clever, passionate about science, brave and feisty. Her character is probably polarising – I can imagine some people finding her intensely irritating – but I loved her and I was cheering for her to get to bottom of the mysterious murder, which she ultimately does, of course, in a most satisfying ending.

Tense in parts, captivating, exciting and original with some lovely literary references to boot, I will definitely be open to reading more Flavia de Luce books, if I ever have time.

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