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

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

It is the summer of 1950–and at the once-grand mansion of Buckshaw, young Flavia de Luce, an aspiring chemist with a passion for poison, is intrigued by a series of inexplicable events: A dead bird is found on the doorstep, a postage stamp bizarrely pinned to its beak. Then, hours later, Flavia finds a man lying in the cucumber patch and watches him as he takes his dying breath.For Flavia, who is both appalled and delighted, life begins in earn...


Details The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie (Flavia de Luce, #1)

TitleThe Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie (Flavia de Luce, #1)
ISBN9780385342308
Author
Release DateApr 28th, 2009
PublisherDelacorte Press
LanguageEnglish
GenreMystery, Fiction, Historical, Historical Fiction, Young Adult
Rating

Reviews The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie (Flavia de Luce, #1)

  • Felicia
    2009-12-02
    This book probably deserves 4 stars, but to me, as far as how much I enjoyed it, 5 stars baby!Having just read Steig Larssen's "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" I hadn't expected to stumble on a heroine as quickly that I'd love as much. But Flavia fits the bill!This is a historical mystery, set in England in the late 40's/ (51 maybe?) Anyway, Flavia is 11 going on 40. She's a genius, perhaps a mad one, who knows. She is drawn into a wonderful mystery...
  • Hannah
    2010-04-24
    I really wanted to like this more then I ended up doing. The story started off slowly, then picked up steam with a murder to solve and some interesting backstory on stamps. What hindered my enjoyment of the book, the story and the murder mystery was, unfortunately, the main character and detective: Flavia duLuce.To say that young Flavia is precocious is an understatement. She has to be one of the most intelligent, well spoken, criminal minds sinc...
  • Carol
    2013-10-26
    So ... I'm the outlier. I cannot abide Flavia de Luce - yes, the same Flavia de Luce that everyone else in the reading universe - or at least the subset of those who enjoy mysteries - loves, adores, enjoys. For months I hid my outlier status by changing the applicable shelf from "currently reading" to "to read", but have decided that today I shall end the deception and own my outlier status. I am a grown woman. I can handle the blow back from adm...
  • Trin
    2009-02-13
    A historical mystery, set in England, narrated by a precocious 11-year-old girl. I feel like I should have loved this, but mostly it just bored me. Flavia’s narration, designed to show off how brilliant she is, lacked the necessary wit and charm, and her investigation into a couple of murders and some missing stamps was full of weird leaps of logic and sideways-step conclusions. I never felt involved or like any part of the story was real or ma...
  • Tatiana
    2010-03-11
    Flavia de Luce is an 11-year old amateur sleuth, a future chemist and poison enthusiast. She lives with her widowed father and two older sisters at Buckshaw - a decaying English country-side mansion. Flavia's days are occupied with chemical experiments and schemes of spiking her evil older sister Ophelia's lipstick with poison ivy. That is until one fateful day a dead bird with a postage stamp stuck to its beak is found on the doorstep of Bucksha...
  • David
    2008-09-05
    I absolutely loved Sweetness. The narrator-protagonist is one of the cleverest, liveliest, most entertaining characters I have had the pleasure to meet in many a year. I laughed aloud many times and couldn't wait to get back to reading this gem. Flavia is the 11-year-old daughter of a widower in England in the 50s. She loves science and mystery, despises her haughty clueless sisters, and is plotting to poison them and get away with it. When myste...
  • Dan Schwent
    2015-05-18
    When young Flavia de Luce, aspiring chemist, finds a body in the cucumber patch outside her father's house, she finds herself caught up in a web of deceit and murder...I'm not really sure how my love of detective fiction led me to this tale of an eleven year old girl in 1950s England solving a mystery involving stamps but I'm glad it did.Flavia de Luce is a precocious English girl with a passion for chemistry in general and poisons in particular....
  • Magill
    2010-05-16
    A mystery about a precocious child, whom I would like to like, but suspect that she would not be enjoyable to be around. Flavia, when not tormenting her eldest sister, attempts to solve a murder in 1950 in Great Britain. I wanted to like this book, as much as the title appealed to me, but only finished out of a sense of duty, having bought the book based on the reviews rather than borrowing it. A good lesson, to remind me of the perils of random ...
  • Laurie
    2009-06-17
    Ignore the title, please, and go for the essence. Flavia de Luce is an eleven year-old Sherlock Holmes with a predilection for the dark side of rural crime and a hobby of poisons. This will be the first in what promises to be an utterly original and delicious series. Adult preoccupations and values may confront Flavia, but they do not greatly impress her; by the story's end, the reader can only agree.
  • Kathryn
    2009-06-07
    "There are times, Miss de Luce... when you deserve a brass medal. And there are other times when you deserve to be sent to your room with bread and water." -- Inspector Hewitt to Flavia de Luce: budding sleuth, brilliant chemist, and diabolical eleven-year-old.After very high hopes, I almost gave up on "The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie" after about seven chapters, finding little literary sweetness to induce in me a hunger to devour the rema...
  • Tea Jovanović
    2013-05-04
    Prva knjiga iz serijala od šest romana o devojčici Flaviji i njenim čudnim interesovanjima i dogodovštinama... Nažalost, publika je kod nas nije prihvatila, a ni izdavač se nije adekvatno potrudio da je predstavi čitaocima... Knjiga u kojoj uživaju i tinejdžeri i odrasli širom sveta... Autor je rado viđen gost po sajmovima knjiga u svetu... Ne skida se s bestseler lista... Must read za mlade i one koji vole dobru knjigu... Veoma je zab...
  • Nadia
    2010-06-01
    Finally! I'm done! The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie has been read and crossed off of my TBR list. And now I must ask you not to hate me, because truthfully, though I did enjoy aspects of the book, I did not love it. I found it to be rather predictable, long-winded and slightly dull at times. There were moments when I had to put the book down or just rush ahead in order to avoid a passage that went on about something or other that just didn'...
  • Algernon
    2018-01-25
    Sometimes reviewing a book is a bit of a chore, especially if I really liked the novel and I want to do it justice. Other times, reviewing is sheer pleasure, and it does not necessarily follows that the book was popcorn. Revisiting bookmarks and notes proves to be a chance for laughing out loud all over again and reading just another couple of pages for the pleasure of the company of say mr. Bertie Wooster or Arthur Dent.Flavia de Luce is that so...
  • Meredith Holley
    2010-01-13
    This book is CSI to The Series of Unfortunate Events' McGyver. In my scale, a three-star rating is neutral, and that's a pretty accurate evaluation of how I feel about this story. At the risk of sounding disapproving, I'm going to make a couple of notes about why I didn't love the book. They're not things I really disliked about the book, though, just to be clear. I'm also really terrible about reading mystery stories, so, I’m disqualifying mys...
  • Adina
    2014-06-27
    A different kind of mystery book that I found fascinating. First star is for the heroine. A witty 11 years old precocious girl, with a passion for chemistry, especially poison who finds a dead body in her garden and decides to investigate the murder herself. Two stars are for the setting. The novel is set in the English countryside in the 1950'. The girl and her family live in an old mansion at the outskirts of a small village. I really enjoyed t...
  • Julie
    2016-10-08
    The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley is a 2009 Delacorte Press publication. Several years back, I received a copy of the fifth book in this series for review purposes. I had no idea I was agreeing to read a YA mystery, and was slightly irritated at myself for not researching the context before agreeing to review it. But, once I started reading it, I realized the novel was not necessarily for kids or young adults. In fact, I wond...
  • Lisa Vegan
    2009-03-12
    Delightful!I loved this quirky book. The amateur sleuth and chemistry enthusiast Flavia de Luce is a very unusual 11 year old, but I’ve known many 11 year olds unusual in their own ways, so Flavia worked for me just fine. She’s completely over the top, yet somehow believable, at least within the narrative. She’s a fabulous character and a brilliant creation.I smiled several times on almost every page, especially in the first part of the boo...
  • Beverly
    2018-03-29
    I am a sucker for girl power. I say that right off the bat, so I loved the malevolent girl detective Flavia who although she has some serious issues with her sisters is so darn plucky and strong that I couldn't help but be in her corner. Her beloved father is accused of murder and it's up to her to prove his innocence as the police seem to be going by the old adage, if you're in the vicinity you're the guy.
  • Arah-Lynda
    2011-07-23
    A surprisingly, delightfull who dunnit, introducing Flavia De Luce, who is one of the most captivating, young characters I have met since young Harry came out from his cupboard under the stairs. I'll definitely be reading the next chemical caper.
  • Misty
    2009-10-08
    Flavia de Luce is not your average eleven year old. She lives in a decaying mansion. She has a passion for chemistry, especially poisons. And when she finds a man dying in her cucumber patch, it doesn't occur to her to be worried or scared. Instead, Flavia senses something delicious may come of it: adventure.Thus Flavia sets out to find out just who the man is, and how he came to be dying in her cucumber patch. But what starts off as a fun, myste...
  • Wart Hill
    2015-04-16
    Things I Find While ShelvingWell, that was disappointing. I have been looking forward to reading this for awhile and I was finally in the mood and it was in at the library (I've tried the audio but find it far too annoying), so I was super psyched!And then it was...super meh.Flavia is beyond annoying. As are most of the characters, but especially Flavia. It annoys me greatly that she thinks she needs to compete with the police to solve a murder b...
  • Heather (DeathByBook)
    2009-09-17
    This is a new favorite! I read it in two sittings and am ready to start agiain. Flavia de Luce is one of my top new detectives. I only wish I could have her over for tea to discuss the difficulty of living with older sisters and perhaps, poisons. I'm sure it has been said by many and I agree, that this book is an absolute delight.
  • Meagan
    2009-05-26
    I'm not usually one for mysteries because they're so much about the plot and not so much about the character, so it takes a good one to keep me interested. Unfortunatley, this one did not. I found it terribly dry and borderline nodded off at several points. I guess I was hoping for more of a 'Mysterious case of the dog in the nighttime'. Instead it just seemed to almost trudge along at an alarmingly tottering pace.I did find the main character, F...
  • BookLover
    2017-03-31
    This was a delightful little read! Thoroughly enjoyed looking at life in 1950 through the eyes of the incorrigible Flavia de Luce!
  • Robert
    2013-11-01
    If I were an eleven-year-old girl, I’d like to think I might resemble Flavia de Luce. Precocious, ubiquitous, and intelligent, she’s filled with energy and life, refers to her sisters as Feely and Daffy, and has an unbounding curiosity about the world around her, even though there’s always the chance she could blow up Bishop’s Lacey with her latest science experiment. Not knowing what trouble she might find herself in next kicked my curio...
  • ✨Susan✨
    2015-07-31
    A clever, sassy, Nancy Drew like book with a young girl who loves chemistry and mystery. A fun, fast paced ride with our heroine Flavia, the youngest of three girls being raised by their father. Flavia's angst and curiosity is entertaining and hits on all cylinders in this cozy murder mystery that can be enjoyed by young and old alike. A good story mixed with good narration makes for a win, win adventure.
  • Lata
    2018-02-19
    This is my second time reading this, though this time I chose to listen to it. And that made a difference. Where before I didn't really think much of the book, this time, having a voice actor bring Flavia de Luce to life was critical to me enjoying this story. Flavia's intelligence, humour and cheek really come through in the audio, and that makes the book, and this time I could appreciate Alan Bradley's writing and historical details. I am going...
  • Mona
    2015-02-15
    Delightful and Unique Young Protagonist, Flawed Story Eleven year old Flavia de Luce is such a delightful and unique character. "The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie" is worth reading just to make her acquaintance.She is a precociously brilliant child living in Northern England in the 1950s. Her passion in life is chemistry (specifically poisons) and she has her own chemistry lab. She is also an accomplished fibber (well, probably not as accomp...
  • Brenda
    2009-03-12
    Clever plot, unusual subject (stamp collecting), interesting setting and time, and amusing characters flesh out this funny little mystery. Flavia is a smart and snarky little detective whose passion is poison. I look forward to more Flavia.
  • Kasia
    2010-06-14
    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 po...