Hemning Sternberg (moonshadow) wrote,
Hemning Sternberg

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

Title: The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie
Author: Alan Bradley
Series: Flavia de Luce #1
Genre: Mystery, historical fiction
Setting: England in the 1950s
Reason for Reading: I saw it on the list for the mystery book club at the library. It was the book of the month for February, but who's counting?
Finished In: Days
Pages: 385, including an interview with the author and topics for discussion. In the interview, I learned that this is the author's first novel and he's in his seventies - and that he doesn't plan to age his protagonist significantly.
Copyright Date: 2009
Cover: A crow with a stamp over its beak, against a green background.
First line: "It was as black in the closet as old blood."
Epigraph: "Unless some sweetness at the bottom lie, who cares for all the crinkling of the pie?" - William King
Themes: Stamp collecting, poisons, gardens, prep school.
Best part: Usually I don't like fiction set in the 1950s so I was impressed Bradley made that appealing for me.
Worst part: Talk about sibling rivalry! Flavia's relationships with her sisters are toxic, and I use the adjective advisedly.
Imaginary Theme Song: "Let's Have Another Cup of Coffee"
Grade: B+
Recommended for: If you're looking for something outside the common way this is a good book to get into.
Related Reads: Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear. Touchstone by Laurie R. King.
Tags: books 2011, fiction
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