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I Am Half-Sick of Shadows

I Am Half-Sick of Shadows
Author: Alan Bradley
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Total Pages: 368
Release: 2011-11-01
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 0385668104

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What better Christmas surprise for detective-in-training Flavia de Luce than a dreadful murder under Buckshaw's roof - and a snowbound house full of suspects! It's Christmas time, and our beloved Flavia is tucked away in her laboratory whipping up a sticky concoction to trap that infamous sneak, Saint Nick, and thereby prove once and for all - despite the claims of her evil sisters - that he does exist. But she is soon distracted from her task: Colonel de Luce, in desperate need of funds, has rented the family's crumbling manor house to a film company for the holidays. When its crew arrives from London to shoot a movie starring the reclusive and renowned actress, Phyllis Wyvern, there's no end to the disruptions - and dramas - demanding Flavia's attention. When Wyvern is convinced to perform a famous scene to help raise funds for the local church, it is decided that Buckshaw Manor is the only suitable location. Its foyer alone is bigger than the parish hall, and could fit every man, woman, and child in Bishop's Lacey, to a soul. It's almost Christmas Eve, but - to no one's surprise - all of the village inhabitants fight their way through a raging snowstorm to be in the audience that magical night. As the actors take to the stage, however, the blizzard sets in, and it becomes clear that the villagers will have to hunker down at Buckshaw for the night. Sleeping head to toe in the de Luces' foyer seems amenable to most, until word spreads of the evening's shocking conclusion - Phyllis Wyvern is found strangled to death in the Blue Bedroom, with a length of film from one of her movies tied in an elaborate bow around her neck. But who among the assembled guests would stage such a chilling scene? As the storm worsens and the list of suspects grows, Flavia must use every ounce of her chemical cleverness and crime-solving prowess to ferret out a killer hidden in plain sight. But when she does piece the puzzle together and deduce who has committed this twisted crime, will Flavia be able to escape in one piece?


Speaking from Among the Bones

Speaking from Among the Bones
Author: Alan Bradley
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Total Pages: 305
Release: 2013-01-29
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 0345538684

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NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NPR • NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER From award-winning author Alan Bradley comes the next cozy British mystery starring intrepid young sleuth Flavia de Luce, hailed by USA Today as “one of the most remarkable creations in recent literature.” Eleven-year-old amateur detective and ardent chemist Flavia de Luce is used to digging up clues, whether they’re found among the potions in her laboratory or between the pages of her insufferable sisters’ diaries. What she is not accustomed to is digging up bodies. Upon the five-hundredth anniversary of St. Tancred’s death, the English hamlet of Bishop’s Lacey is busily preparing to open its patron saint’s tomb. Nobody is more excited to peek inside the crypt than Flavia, yet what she finds will halt the proceedings dead in their tracks: the body of Mr. Collicutt, the church organist, his face grotesquely and inexplicably masked. Who held a vendetta against Mr. Collicutt, and why would they hide him in such a sacred resting place? The irrepressible Flavia decides to find out. And what she unearths will prove there’s never such thing as an open-and-shut case. BONUS: This edition includes an excerpt from Alan Bradley’s The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches. Acclaim for Speaking from Among the Bones “[Alan] Bradley scores another success. . . . This series is a grown-up version of Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys and all those mysteries you fell in love with as a child.”—The San Diego Union-Tribune “The precocious and irrepressible Flavia . . . continues to delight.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review) “Fiendishly brilliant . . . Bradley has created an utterly charming cast of characters . . . as quirky as any British mystery fan could hope for.”—Bookreporter “Delightful and entertaining.”—San Jose Mercury News


Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew'd

Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew'd
Author: Alan Bradley
Publisher: Bantam
Total Pages: 352
Release: 2016-09-20
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 0345539982

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Hailed as “a combination of Eloise and Sherlock Holmes” by The Boston Globe, Flavia de Luce returns in a Christmas mystery from award-winning author Alan Bradley. In spite of being ejected from Miss Bodycote’s Female Academy in Canada, twelve-year-old Flavia de Luce is excited to be sailing home to England. But instead of a joyous homecoming, she is greeted on the docks with unfortunate news: Her father has fallen ill, and a hospital visit will have to wait while he rests. But with Flavia’s blasted sisters and insufferable cousin underfoot, Buckshaw now seems both too empty—and not empty enough. Only too eager to run an errand for the vicar’s wife, Flavia hops on her trusty bicycle, Gladys, to deliver a message to a reclusive wood-carver. Finding the front door ajar, Flavia enters and stumbles upon the poor man’s body hanging upside down on the back of his bedroom door. The only living creature in the house is a feline that shows little interest in the disturbing scene. Curiosity may not kill this cat, but Flavia is energized at the prospect of a new investigation. It’s amazing what the discovery of a corpse can do for one’s spirits. But what awaits Flavia will shake her to the very core. Praise for Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew’d “Mystery fans seeking novels of wit, an immersive English countryside setting, and rich characterizations will be rewarded with this newest entry in the award-winning series.”—Library Journal (starred review) “There is such a thing as willing suspension of disbelief brought on by sheer outlandish charm, and that’s what [Alan] Bradley and some delicious writing have tapped.”—London Free Press “Flavia’s first-person narration reveals her precocious intellect as well as her youthful vulnerability.”—Shelf Awareness “Flavia is once again a fun, science-loving protagonist. . . . This series entry ends on a note that begs for the next story.”—Library Reads “An eleven-year-old prodigy with an astonishing mind for chemistry and a particular interest in poisons.”—The Strand Magazine (Five of the Best Historical Heroines) “Bradley’s preteen heroine comes through in the end with a series of deductions so clever she wants to hug herself. So will you.”—Kirkus Reviews


The Grave's a Fine and Private Place

The Grave's a Fine and Private Place
Author: Alan Bradley
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Total Pages: 360
Release: 2018-01-30
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 0385678452

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"The world's greatest adolescent British chemist/busybody/sleuth" (The Seattle Times), Flavia de Luce, returns in a twisty new mystery novel from award-winning and New York Times bestselling author Alan Bradley. In the wake of an unthinkable family tragedy, twelve-year-old Flavia de Luce is struggling to fill her empty days. For a needed escape, Dogger, the loyal family servant, suggests a boating trip for Flavia and her two older sisters. As their punt drifts past the church where a notorious vicar had recently dispatched three of his female parishioners by spiking their communion wine with cyanide, Flavia, an expert chemist with a passion for poisons, is ecstatic. Suddenly something grazes against her fingers as she dangles them in the water. She clamps down on the object, imagining herself as Ernest Hemingway battling a marlin, and pulls up what she expects will be a giant fish. But in Flavia's grip is something far better: a human head, attached to a human body. If anything could take Flavia's mind off sorrow, it is solving a murder—although one that may lead the young sleuth to an early grave.


The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches

The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches
Author: Alan Bradley
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Total Pages: 233
Release: 2014-01-14
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 0345539699

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER On a spring morning in 1951, eleven-year-old chemist and aspiring detective Flavia de Luce gathers with her family at the railway station, awaiting the return of her long-lost mother, Harriet. Yet upon the train’s arrival in the English village of Bishop’s Lacey, Flavia is approached by a tall stranger who whispers a cryptic message into her ear. Moments later, he is dead, mysteriously pushed under the train by someone in the crowd. Who was this man, what did his words mean, and why were they intended for Flavia? Back home at Buckshaw, the de Luces’ crumbling estate, Flavia puts her sleuthing skills to the test. Following a trail of clues sparked by the discovery of a reel of film stashed away in the attic, she unravels the deepest secrets of the de Luce clan, involving none other than Winston Churchill himself. Surrounded by family, friends, and a famous pathologist from the Home Office—and making spectacular use of Harriet’s beloved Gipsy Moth plane, Blithe Spirit—Flavia will do anything, even take to the skies, to land a killer. BONUS: This edition includes an excerpt from Alan Bradley's As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust. Praise for The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches “Part Harriet the Spy, part Violet Baudelaire from Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, Flavia is a pert and macabre pragmatist.”—The New York Times Book Review “[Alan] Bradley’s award winning Flavia de Luce series . . . has enchanted readers with the outrageous sleuthing career of its precocious leading lady. . . . This latest adventure contains all the winning elements of the previous books.”—Library Journal (starred review) “Bradley’s latest Flavia de Luce novel reaches a new level of perfection as it shows the emotional turmoil and growth of a girl who has always been older than her years and yet is still a child. The mystery is complex and very personal this time, reaching into the past Flavia never knew about. . . . These are astounding, magical books not to be missed.”—RT Book Reviews (Top Pick) “Excellent . . . Flavia retains her droll wit. . . . The solution to a murder is typically neat, and the conclusion sets up future books nicely.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review) “It’s hard to resist either the genre’s pre-eminent preteen sleuth or the hushed revelations about her family.”—Kirkus Reviews “Flavia . . . is as fetching as ever; her chatty musings and her combination of childish vulnerability and seemingly boundless self-confidence haven’t changed a bit.”—Booklist Acclaim for Alan Bradley’s beloved Flavia de Luce novels, winners of the Crime Writers’ Association Debut Dagger Award, Barry Award, Agatha Award, Macavity Award, Dilys Winn Award, and Arthur Ellis Award “If ever there were a sleuth who’s bold, brilliant, and, yes, adorable, it’s Flavia de Luce.”—USA Today “Irresistibly appealing.”—The New York Times Book Review, on A Red Herring Without Mustard “Original, charming, devilishly creative.”—Bookreporter, on I Am Half-Sick of Shadows “Delightful and entertaining.”—San Jose Mercury News, on Speaking from Among the Bones


In the Study with the Wrench

In the Study with the Wrench
Author: Diana Peterfreund
Publisher: Abrams
Total Pages: 330
Release: 2020-10-13
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
ISBN: 1683357175

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The thrilling sequel to the book that Kirkus Reviews called “ingeniously plotted and vastly entertaining,” inspired by the classic board game CLUE—now in paperback! New semester. New secrets. New murder. In the aftermath of their headmaster’s brutal murder, Blackbrook Academy has been thrown into chaos. Half the student body hasn’t bothered to return to campus—but those who have include Orchid McKee, Vaughn Green, Scarlett Mistry, Beth “Peacock” Picach, Phineas Plum, and Sam “Mustard” Maestor, now warily referred to by the other students as the Murder Crew. When another staff member is found dead, each teen’s reasons for sticking around come to light. Orchid and Vaughn grow ever closer to having their secrets exposed, Peacock and Scarlett struggle to change their stripes, and Plum and Mustard question everything. As everything comes to a boiling point at Tudor House, nobody’s life will ever be the same.


The French Widow

The French Widow
Author: Mark Pryor
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Total Pages: 288
Release: 2020-09-15
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 1645060306

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A young American woman is attacked at an historic Paris chateau and four paintings are stolen the same night, drawing Hugo Marston into a case where everyone seems like a suspect. To solve this mystery Hugo must crack the secrets of the icy and arrogant Lambourd family, who seem more interested in protecting their good name than future victims. Just as Hugo thinks he’s close, some of the paintings mysteriously reappear, at the very same time that one of his suspects goes missing. While under pressure to catch a killer, Hugo also has to face the consequences of an act some see as heroic, but others believe might have been staged for self-serving reasons. This puts Hugo under a media and police spotlight he doesn’t want, and helps the killer he’s hunting mark him as the next target….


The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie
Author: Alan Bradley
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Total Pages: 386
Release: 2009-04-28
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 0440338468

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WINNER OF THE AGATHA • ARTHUR ELLIS • DILYS • DEBUT DAGGER AWARDS “Wonderfully entertaining . . . sure to be one of the most loved mysteries of the year . . . [Flavia is] a delightful, intrepid, acid-tongued new heroine.”—Chicago Sun-Times 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.” BONUS: This edition contains a The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie discussion guide and an excerpt from Alan Bradley's The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag.


The Shoebox Bible

The Shoebox Bible
Author: Alan Bradley
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Total Pages: 192
Release: 2014-11-04
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
ISBN: 038568486X

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On a cold, dark winter day during the Second World War, a young Alan Bradley found hidden beneath a floorboard in his mother’s bedroom closet a well-worn cardboard shoebox. At the time, he could make little sense of the ragtag things he found inside: cigarette packages, soup can labels, handbills, calendars, paper bags, pie boxes—any scrap of paper upon which his mother could copy out, in her old-fashioned handwriting, what seemed to be no more than unrelated snippets of Scripture. He only knew that the box, which he would later come to think of as the Shoebox Bible, had something to do with the fact that his father had run away from home. Many years would pass, and his mother would be on her deathbed before he would once again hold this treasure in his hands. And only then would he put together the pieces of the puzzle, and learn the complete truth. Beautifully and lovingly told, The Shoebox Bible is a wonderful memoir of a precocious family who manage to live and love despite the absence of their father. Interspersed with heartbreaking quotations from the Old and New Testaments, this sad, funny, and above all inspiring story will appeal to readers who fell in love with such inspirational books as Tuesdays with Morrie and Mister God, This Is Anna.


As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust

As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust
Author: Alan Bradley
Publisher: Bantam
Total Pages: 346
Release: 2015-01-06
Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 0345539958

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Flavia de Luce—“part Harriet the Spy, part Violet Baudelaire from Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events” (The New York Times Book Review)—takes her remarkable sleuthing prowess to the unexpectedly unsavory world of Canadian boarding schools in this captivating mystery. BONUS: This edition includes “The Curious Case of the Copper Corpse: A Flavia de Luce Story.” Banished! is how twelve-year-old Flavia de Luce laments her predicament, when her father and Aunt Felicity ship her off to Miss Bodycote’s Female Academy, the boarding school that her mother, Harriet, once attended across the sea in Canada. The sun has not yet risen on Flavia’s first day in captivity when a gift lands at her feet. Flavia being Flavia, a budding chemist and sleuth, that gift is a charred and mummified body, which tumbles out of a bedroom chimney. Now, while attending classes, making friends (and enemies), and assessing the school’s stern headmistress and faculty (one of whom is an acquitted murderess), Flavia is on the hunt for the victim’s identity and time of death, as well as suspects, motives, and means. Rumors swirl that Miss Bodycote’s is haunted, and that several girls have disappeared without a trace. When it comes to solving multiple mysteries, Flavia is up to the task—but her true destiny has yet to be revealed. Praise for As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust “Flavia de Luce [is] perhaps contemporary crime fiction’s most original character—to say she is Pippi Longstocking with a Ph.D. in chemistry (speciality: poisons) barely begins to describe her.”—Maclean’s “Another treat for readers of all ages . . . [As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust] maintains the high standards Bradley set from the start.”—Booklist “Exceptional . . . [The] intriguing setup only gets better, and Bradley makes Miss Bodycote’s a suitably Gothic setting for Flavia’s sleuthing. Through it all, her morbid narrative voice continues to charm.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review) “Even after all these years, Flavia de Luce is still the world’s greatest adolescent British chemist/busybody/sleuth.”—The Seattle Times “Plot twists come faster than Canadian snowfall. . . . Bradley’s sense of observation is as keen as gung-ho scientist Flavia’s. . . . The results so far are seven sparkling Flavia de Luce mysteries.”—Library Journal