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I Am Half-Sick of Shadows Audiobook

I Am Half-Sick of Shadows: A Flavia de Luce Novel

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Publisher's Summary

It’s Christmastime, and the precocious Flavia de Luce—an eleven-year-old sleuth with a passion for chemistry and a penchant for crime-solving—is tucked away in her laboratory, whipping up a concoction to ensnare Saint Nick. But she is soon distracted when a film crew arrives at Buckshaw, the de Luces’ decaying English estate, to shoot a movie starring the famed Phyllis Wyvern. Amid a raging blizzard, the entire village of Bishop’s Lacey gathers at Buckshaw to watch Wyvern perform, yet nobody is prepared for the evening’s shocking conclusion: a body found, past midnight, strangled to death with a length of film. 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 sly wit at her disposal to ferret out a killer hidden in plain sight.

©2011 Alan Bradley (P)2011 Random House

What the Critics Say

"If ever there was a sleuth who’s bold, brilliant, and yes, adorable, it’s Flavia de Luce.” (USA Today)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (896 )
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4.8 (811 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Amy Allen, TX, United States 01-11-13
    Amy Allen, TX, United States 01-11-13 Member Since 2010

    murphaim

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    "Too Short!"

    I love the story, but I don't think I would enjoy the story so much if it weren't for Jayne Entwistle's spot-on performance of Flavia. My only problem with the book is that it is too short.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy St Charles, MO, United States 01-04-13
    Nancy St Charles, MO, United States 01-04-13 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I love Flavia!!"

    I've listened to each of the books in this series, in order. I've enjoyed every one of them!

    This installment is the weakest of the four so far, in my opinion, but still a great story. The mystery was weaker than the previous three stories. Flavia is still the most delightful, precocious and sassy child! Mr Bradley has to be a genius to be able to write from this child's perspective so well, and make the book so entertaining for every age.

    You may be tempted to pass on this series thinking it is a "kid's" book. But trust me, while it is fine for kids to listen to... it is really great for the bigger kids-at-heart! Flavia's snippy interaction with her older sisters might be intentionally overstated, but I'm sure many younger sister's can relate!

    The narrator is by far the perfect choice for these books. Her inflections for the devious thoughts and cheeky attitudes of Flavia are perfect! I never have trouble listening or following her narration.

    All in all, I recommend this book and series to all ages that love a fun, great mystery!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JEANNINE 01-02-13
    JEANNINE 01-02-13
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    "I love this series"

    The narration was perfect as usual. Jayne Entwistle really captures the age and personality of Flavia. While I did enjoy this installment of the the series, I felt it was a bit rushed and the attention to detail was not there. I kept wondering about all the towns people stranded at Buckshaw, All in all a great listen and I am looking forward to the next book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Garden Womble Nova Scotia, Canada 11-19-12
    Garden Womble Nova Scotia, Canada 11-19-12 Member Since 2012

    A frequent listener - mostly to mystery, police procedurals and science fantasy, with a few other bits and pieces thrown in. I live on a farm and run my own technical writing business, and listen to audiobooks while knitting and spinning yarn in my spare time.

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    "A great winter season mystery"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, I enjoyed all the Flavia stories and this one is no exception. They are great, light-hearted mysteries with plenty of twists and turns.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I enjoy the juxtaposition of Flavia as a youngster who is still wondering about the existence of Santa Claus while also dealing with the very adult matter of a murder mystery. She is a complex and engaging character and I love her adventures.


    What does Jayne Entwistle bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Jayne really brings all the characters to life in an entirely credible and convincing way.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Absolutely - I never want to turn off a Flavia mystery!


    Any additional comments?

    As always, looking forward to the next installment of Flavia's adventures.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mimi Bacon Pasadena, CA 09-12-12
    Mimi Bacon Pasadena, CA 09-12-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Love Flavia"
    Where does I Am Half-Sick of Shadows rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Top of my list.


    What other book might you compare I Am Half-Sick of Shadows to and why?

    Flavia is in a class of her own.


    Have you listened to any of Jayne Entwistle’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I was told she did the Flavia voice so well, that is why I bought it.
    I have read all the Flavia books.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When the sisters started to "communicate".


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    VROF California 06-20-12
    VROF California 06-20-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Outstanding performance of a delightful story"
    Would you consider the audio edition of I Am Half-Sick of Shadows to be better than the print version?

    The Flavia de Luce stories are wonderfully read by Jayne Entwistle. I started this series with the audiobook and have not been able to read them. The listening experience is far superior. Entwistle does a fantastic job of bringing Flavia's emotions to life and every second of this story is pure joy.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    Interesting characters keep the story going while the listener tries to predict what will happen next. This series is a great set of mysteries and the characters are wonderful.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    My favorite scenes usually involve multiple characters because Entwistle does such a great job with their voices.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I could hardly force myself to stop listening as the story progressed.


    Any additional comments?

    This is an excellent series for older children who like mysteries. Flavia is an 11-year-old chemistry prodigy whose family has some interesting secrets. I just love these books and can't wait for another one!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Luanne 05-14-12
    Luanne 05-14-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Loved!!!"

    Loved it! I'd even pay for it with real money. Great series and excellent narration!!!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MS 04-29-12
    MS 04-29-12
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    "predictable characters/story but beautiful writing"
    Any additional comments?

    The writing (words actually used) is too mature for the younger crowd but the story line is too young for the older crowd. So, it doesn't really fit...

    The main character is delightfully precocious but is mentally way beyond her age as the author tells it. (i.e. she notes a look of "contempt" on a man's face. Eleven year-olds -- even very smart ones -- are highly unlikely to note such a look, and even if they did, they wouldn't use the word contempt to describe it. I don't know many forty year-olds who really know what that word means.)

    The writing is descriptive -- which I like, but some might think it unnecessarily wordy. And the dichotomy of characters being all good or all evil quickly gets boring.

    The author puts every character into their neat little box: the curmudgeonly widowed father, the haughty butler, the simple cook, the mean older sisters, the evil actress, the jocular movie set manager. All laid out within the first few chapters -- all that is left to learn is the how-of-it. Not much fun when you're looking for a good who-dun-it. And because of the perfect boxes there are no character surprises to bring on a little serendipity.

    (Narration was very good.)

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Happy iPad User 04-16-12
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    "A Flavian Fan"
    Any additional comments?

    Ok, I admit I am a Flavia de Luce fan! She is a remarkable 11 year old girl who uses her powers of observation and love of chemistry to solve crimes. The narrator does a great job presenting Flavia's quirkiness. I hope there will be more Flavia stories--I'll download them as soon as they are available!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Santa Fe, NM, United States 03-16-12
    C. Santa Fe, NM, United States 03-16-12 Member Since 2017
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    "Another Great Flavia de Luce Adventure"

    Alan Bradley's precocious heroine, Flavia de Luce is refreshing. His books are definitely originals, including the titles. I have enjoyed all of Mr. Bradley's books, both in print and audio, and Jayne Entwistle's narration is flawless and perfect for all the characters, especially Flavia's. Please, whoever decided narrators, I beg you to do all possible to keep Ms. Entwistle as the narrator of this series.

    For anyone who has not read any of the Flavia de Luce books by Mr. Bradley, I recommend starting with the first one, "Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie" and continue to read/listen to them in order. While each book can stand alone, a deeper appreciation for the characters is achieved by reading each book in the order they were written.

    Previous Flavia adventures had her riding all over the countryside around Bishop's Lacy on her trusty bicycle, Gladys. I am Half Sick of Shadows is set almost entirely in the big, deteriorating mansion the de Luce's call home and Gladys has been put away for the winter. A parade of strangers and locals find themselves trapped in the mansion on Christmas Eve due to a huge snowstorm....and there is a murder to solve! Flavia does her usual magic with chemical concoctions and her keen deductive mind to come up with the answers, but not without some hard knocks along the way.

    If there had been more stars to add to the ratings, I would have done so.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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