Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

Quick housekeeping:

Today is the last day of January and I'm on pace to read 60 books this year. Looking back to the last two years where I kept very close track of my reading and the three or so years prior to that where I kept loose track, I am confident that I won't read 60 books (there are months when reading drops off...December, May), but I'm still aiming for 52 books. I didn't read finish any non-fiction this month, but I'm not going to force myself to do that (see the RULES)...but if you have any good non-fiction suggestions, I'd love to hear them!

the sweetness at the bottom of the pie

Okay, so do you know why I picked this book up? Because of the cover. And the fact that it was the only non-fantasy/vampire/wizard/weird futuristic novel in the turning bookcase right beside the picture books. I know: don't judge books by their covers, but the stamp drew me in. Good thing I missed the scary dead bird. But I really did enjoy this book. I also need to get out of the kids' side of the library...or not. I have a pile of non-kidlit beside my bed to read.


The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. That's what I'm supposed to be talking about.

It was really good. So good that when I discovered, by turning  the last page, that there are at least two more novels featuring detective Flavia de Luce, I knew I'd try to track them down.

Just another momentary aside. It drives me bananas that paperbacks aren't catalogued by title and author at our library. So if I find something I want that either the library only bought in soft cover or was only printed in soft cover, I just have to keep searching the (unalphabetized) turning shelves for the titles I want and hope that maybe someone got the book at another branch but returned it to one of the two we visit.

Back to the book. Flavia is an eleven year old English girl, living in a crumbling manor house in the English countryside in 1950. She has no mother (although maybe her deceased mother isn't actually dead?), an eccentric father and two horrid older sisters (aren't all older sisters horrid from an eleven year old's perspective?). She is also a chemistry prodigy and has a wild imagination. She's smart and she's nosy curious, which makes for a good detective.

I quite liked this book. It had enough twists and turns to keep me on my toes and was very well written (and is a Canadian novel...I wrongly assumed it had a British author). I was particularly impressed that a retired man could capture the essence of an eleven year old girl so well!

I just discovered there are six Falvia de Luce books, four released with the fifth to come in 2013...guess what will be gracing my bedside table next! (oh wait, one more update. An additional four have been added...that make ten [ahem, yay math skills])

Oh, and bonus points. Alan Bradley lives(d) in Kelowna.

If you hadn't already figured it out, I highly recommend this book. And I'm a geek.

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