The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley

Genre: adult mystery
Secondary genre: historical
Format read: audiobook
Rep: autistic coding
Series: Flavia de Luce vol 1
Rating: planchet-4

This book is unusual in that it is written for adults, but the main character, Flavia, is only eleven.

I’m a sucker for a girl genius, especially one living in a previous era, so when I heard about this book I was eager to get my hands on it.

Set in 1950, Flavia lives with her two older sisters–who are horrid–and her distant father in a big old English manor house.

When Flavia discovers a dying man–who expires right before her eyes–in the garden, it sets the wheels turning on a mystery that dredges up her father’s past and puts out intrepid young chemist on the path to no only uncovering one murder, but two.

I gobbled up this book in two days. I loved the dynamics between the sisters, and how, in this stiff-upper-lip family, they show affection by tormenting each other. I do wish that Daphne, the middle sister, were just a little more fleshed out–I feel like if the three of them could find common ground, they’d be hell on wheels if they worked together.

I adored the complexity of the mystery, the characters, the setting–everything about this book, and I will definitely be looking for the next in the series.