The Grave's a Fine and Private Place

Flavia de Luce

Book 9
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “The world’s greatest adolescent British chemist/busybody/sleuth” (The Seattle Times), Flavia de Luce, returns in a twisty mystery novel from award-winning 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 her fingers as she dangles them in the water. She clamps down on the object, imagining herself 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.

Praise for The Grave’s a Fine and Private Place

“Flavia [is] irrepressible, precocious and indefatigable. . . . A whole new chapter of Flavia’s life opens as she approaches adolescence. Will she become the Madame Curie of crime?”Bookreporter

“Outstanding . . . As usual, Bradley makes his improbable series conceit work and relieves the plot’s inherent darkness with clever humor.”Publishers Weekly (starred review)
 
“There’s only one Flavia. . . . Series fans will anticipate the details of this investigation, along with one last taste of Flavia’s unorthodox family life.”Library Journal (starred review)
 
“Bradley’s unquenchable heroine brings ‘the most complicated case I had ever come across’ to a highly satisfying conclusion, with the promise of still brighter days ahead.”Kirkus Reviews
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More by Alan Bradley

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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
4.3
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Additional Information

Publisher
Bantam
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Published on
Jan 30, 2018
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Pages
384
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ISBN
9780345540010
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Amateur Sleuth
Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Cozy
Fiction / Thrillers / Historical
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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See entire series

Fans of Flavia de Luce rejoice—here’s a special eBook original short story, in which the eleven-year-old connoisseur of chemistry is immersed in her element: solving a mystery!
 
Murder! the letter says, Come at once. Anson House, Greyminster, Staircase No. 3. How can Flavia de Luce resist such an urgent plea? After all, examining a dead body sounds like a perfectly splendid way to spend a Sunday. So Flavia hops upon her trusted bicycle, Gladys, whose rubber tires hiss happily along the rainy road, and arrives at her father’s mist-shrouded old school. There, a terrified boy leads her to the loo where, sitting in a bathtub, is what appears to be a statue. But, no: To Flavia’s surprise, the thing is in fact a naked dead man. Save his face, he seems to have been carved out of copper. Never one to shy away from the macabre, Flavia gets to work—only to find that when an investigation begins with a metallic cadaver, ever more curious twists are to be expected.
 
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 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
 
“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
 
“This idiosyncratic young heroine continues to charm.”—The Wall Street Journal
 
“Delightful . . . a combination of Eloise and Sherlock Holmes.”—The Boston Globe
 
“Think preteen Nancy Drew, only savvier.”—Entertainment Weekly
 
“The most intrepid and charming adolescent chemist/detective/busybody in all of rural, post–World War II England.”—The Seattle Times
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