Sunday, December 11, 2011

Book Review: I Am Half-Sick of Shadows by Alan Bradley

✰✰✰✰✰ The magic of Christmas has come to Buckshaw, and Flavia is devising a plan to catch Father Christmas in the act of delivering Christmas gifts. However, she gets distracted from her mission and finds herself surrounded by chaos when a film company arrives at the estate. With the rest of the family conveniently occupied with other activities, Flavia finds herself acting as a one person welcoming party and befriends the one and only Phyllis Wyvern, a very famous actress of film.

At the urging of the vicar, Phyllis and her co-star Desmond Duncan agree to perform an act from Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet to help with raising funds for the church roof. Buckshaw becomes the unlikely backdrop for the play, and nearly the whole village of Bishop's Lacey is gathered at the de Luce family estate for the performance. Meanwhile, a blizzard blows into town and strands everyone at the estate. When someone ends up murdered in the dead of night, everyone suddenly becomes a suspect. Can Flavia and the police discover who the culprit is before someone else ends up dead or hurt? Pick up the fourth installment of the Flavia de Luce mysteries to find out.

The Bottom Line: The sleuthing antics of amateur chemist Flavia de Luce are always a fun read. This installment is full of excitement with the added festivities of Christmas. Although Flavia can be wise beyond her years at times, we see the little girl shine through in her plot to capture Father Christmas. I Am Half-Sick of Shadows: A Flavia de Luce Novel is a fast paced read that will get you in the mood for the holidays. The mystery takes more than a few interesting twists and turns in this house party style whodunit. Very highly recommended for both adult and young adult fans of cozy mysteries.

Details: I Am Half-Sick of Shadows: A Flavia de Luce Novel by Alan Bradley. Hardcover published by Delacorte Press (an imprint of Random House Publishing Group) in 2011. 320 p. ISBN: 978-0-385-34401-2 Note: I received an advance uncorrected proof from Random House in exchange for a review. This was made possible by the Early Reviewer program at LibraryThing.

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