Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4
What did you like about the book? The story begins very dismally: Flavia has returned from Canada to find that her father is ill in the hospital and neither of her sisters even bothers to acknowledge her. She is twelve so this must have hurt pretty deeply no matter how accustomed to it she was. On her first day home, she manages to discover a dead body, something that always cheers her up! She uses her extraordinary skills to go about solving the murder, which has many a twist and turn and reminds me of the lives of A.A. Milne and his son Christopher Robin. The books seem to be getting darker. The humor that charmed the earlier books is all but missing.
Anything you didn’t like about it? Flavia is twelve years old so I had a difficult time imagining a publisher taking her completely seriously when she visited him, talking to her as if she were an accomplished author. And also with Carla, who is 19; Carla defers to Flavia, looks up to her. This is hard to imagine. When Flavia returns from Canada to England, her sisters do not even greet her. This seems quite extreme.
To whom would you recommend this book? Recommend to those who have read the other Flavia books.
Who should buy this book? Public, middle school and high school libraries.
Where would you shelve it? Juvenile and/or YA fiction
Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No.
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Katrina Yurenka, Moderator, Youth Services Book Review
Date of review: 10/24/2016