I bought it based on all the positive reviews, but by Chapter 2 I couldn't listen anymore. Seemed silly and like it was for 10 year old girls. I suspect it would have gotten better, based on the number of very positive reviews, but I couldn't wait it out. I found myself rewinding repeatedly because my mind would wander and I just couldn't get used to the voice of the narrator. Just wasn't for me.
I got this book on a recommendation, and have decided to continue with the series mainly because the character is so completely charming and well done. The heroine, Miss Flavia, is at an age between innocence and worldliness, and she's smart and independent, but without the overblown sass that a poorly done young female characters often have.
The narrator captures the character's personality with perfection! The friend who recommended this series was particularly fond of Flavia's indignation when she isn't believed by the adults, and the narrator captures that so incredibly well! I think the narrator adds a fair bit of comedy that is probably in the book but that might not come through as clearly without her talents. This might be one of those books where the audiobook is better than the print book, because of what the narrator brings.
The story is adorable.the precocious main character has a voice and imagination that blurts out hilarious and odd bits of trivia. The narrator is priceless, the best I have encountered. While the conclusion of the story us predictable. It was worth listening to for no other reason than to discover what Flavia thinks or does next!
Say something about yourself!
I loved this book! It was written well for listening, pictures so adequately painted through the authors words. I listened to the book at work and many times found myself laugh aloud at the antics of Ms. Flavia.
If you've ever had a precociously intelligent 11 year old in your life with a flare for drama mixed in with unflappable optimism, then you will fall for Flavia. At first drawn by the titles in this series, I was then disappointed by the choice of narrator- a deal breaker for me. But now as I start the series over in preparation for the latest release (I haven't done this before, but each release is years apart) I can't imagine any other- now that I understand the character better.
The whole concept behind this series is very complex. The first layer seems simple mystery, a murder solved by a motherless child run amuck in a chemistry lab left behind by some ancestor on the family's English estate. Yet the backdrop of the setting is revealed in layers and the as the plot thickens so does the complexity of the events and circumstances that drive the motivations of each person in Flavia's family life. Her mother, who disappeared when she was only a yr old, 2 elder sisters that taunt and tease her with their jealousy guarded memories of her, and their stoic, aloof father that hides in his library with his stamp collection still mourning her loss.
Once you get past the novel narrative style- she becomes Flavia, and you will love her.