A Red Herring Without Mustard by Alan Bradley
This post is not so much about the third book in the Flavia de Luce series, which unfortunately is still not as strong as the first, but about the main character. I mainly read this book out of adoration of Flavia. The protagonist in Alan Bradley's series is pre-teen Flavia, much smarter but smaller than an adult. Her daily trials and tribulations consist of an inconsistent family life comprised of torturing her older sisters, a distant father and deceased heroine mother and ennui with her small hometown in the 1950s English countryside.
Using Holmes-like detection skills and her love for chemistry, she sets out to find and solve crimes in Bishop's Lacey. Flavia is an underdog that has the reader rooting for her the whole way through. Please pick up The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie if you have an opportunity. If you like Flavia as much as I do, you'll read the next two books, even though the plots lack the development as the first novel.