Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

From the Amazon product description: 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 earnest when murder comes to Buckshaw. “I wish I could say I was afraid, but I wasn’t. Quite the contrary. This was by far the most interesting thing that had ever happened to me in my entire life.”

I both loved the book and was mildly disappointed at the same time. I think it was a case of inflated expectations; there were so many reviews out there praising the book that I don't believe any book could have met my expectations! It was a fun read. I've seen it compared to Harriet the Spy and I have to agree except that Harriet is definitely written for children and Sweetness is not. As I read, I kept considering it, debating with myself whether or not Youngest would possibly enjoy it. I think he would EXCEPT that there are so many references to literary works that are beyond his years, like Bleak House, that he would have to skim quite a bit and end up losing the storyline. I can imagine this though as a movie that children will enjoy. The scenes described are perfect for film - opening with Flavia being tied up in the closet, the car crashing into the shed, teetering on the rooftop - all great images. I googled but could find no mention of plans to make a movie, there were mentions of the second book - it is due out March 9, 2010. As much as I have vowed NO MORE BOOKS until I read what I've already got....I want this one!

This book is my "S" book for the 2010 A-Z Reading Challenge. Click on the button to see my progress.


Diane said...

I am one of the ones who loved this book. Planning to read the sequel this week as well.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

bermudaonion said...

I'm dying to read this book, but my expectations might be set too high as well!

Beth(bookaholicmom) said...

I have this book on my wish list. I'm glad you found it to be a fun read even if it did disappoint you a little.
I have an award for you and your blog here;