If not an avid reader of the Alan Bradley series on Flavia de Luce, do not read past this paragraph. The Flavia de Luce series should be read in order starting with The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. Flavia, an eleven year old with a passion for chemistry, always seems to find a good murder to solve in her small English town of Bishop’s Lacey, set in the 1950’s. While the main character is eleven years old this is not a children’s book. Bradley does his research in chemistry as he relates this to how Flavia can outwit the police and solve the murders in his novels. Read on for my take on book number ten in the series.
The Golden Tresses of the Dead starts out with the residents of Buckshaw preparing for Ophelia’s wedding. Flavia is now twelve years old and the owner of Buckshaw, which gives her many responsibilities. She has also formed a professional partnership with Dogger to solve the mysteries she seems so apt at finding. The novel’s mystery is centered around Ophelia finding a human finger in her wedding cake. Oh my!
While Dogger has helped Flavia in previous cases, this novel is about their partnership. This is meant to make Flavia be taken more seriously as a sleuth, as she is now part of a genuine business. Dogger and Flavia complement each other and one still gets the since of her independence, as she still takes Gladys out for a spin to do her share of the investigating on her own.
Flavia can also be seen to be growing up a bit as she now has a house to run with the help of Dogger and Mrs. Mullet. She is also not the youngest at Buckshaw anymore with cousin Undine living there. Undine is also evolving into more of a storyline in the latest novel as she helps with clues in the mystery. Undine reminds Flavia of herself and therefore is tolerated.
Alan Bradley has delivered yet another interesting read with the latest in the Flavia de Luce series. He has taken his characters to another level to keep the series believable and entertaining. So, head to the nearest bookstore or library and pick-up a copy of The Golden Tresses of the Dead. There is a mystery to be solved!