It is the summer of 1950 and Flavia de Luce is an 11 year old budding chemist in the small, fictional English town of Bishop’s Lacey. As she minding her own business (testing out chemistry experiments on her older sisters), mysterious things start to happen around her- first a dead bird with a postage stamp turns up on the family’s front doorstep, then she finds a man dying at 4am in the family’s cucumber patch! Her natural inclination to solve the mystery only increases when her father is detained for murder by the local constabulary, and the game is afoot! Astride Gladys, her trusty bicycle steed, she cycles all over the village, to and from her family’s crumbling home, in search of answers.
This was such a fun murder mystery. Flavia is quirky, precocious and impetuous, and very fun to follow as she runs headlong into everything she does. My only critiques were that the mystery was a bit slow to start off and Flavia’s narration wasn’t always consistent (sometimes she appeared to be telling us everything, but then later you would find out that she’d discovered and dismissed a red herring ages ago but not let on). Pretty minor complaints, and I’m looking forward to picking up the next novels in the series.