Book Review: The Weed that Strings the Hangman’s Bag

Book Review: The Weed that Strings the Hangman's Bag | Newbery and Beyond

This is the sequel to The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, and I liked this mystery just as much!  As I said in my last review, each book in this series is based on a now-obscure hobby that was popular in 1950’s England, and this book’s focus is on marionettes.  I think puppets and marionettes are kind of creepy, but the way the performances are described in this book makes me want to change my mind.

The story starts when a famous puppeteer and his assistant/lover drive into town in a broken-down van.  They can’t leave until the van is fixed, so the couple agrees to put on a couple of shows for the town in order to pay for the repairs.  What starts out as innocent fun, however, soon turns deadly, and Flavia starts to wonder if the recent death has anything to do with the tragic death of a small child several years earlier.

Once again, Flavia is an energetic, revenge-seeking, too-smart-for-her-own-good eleven-year-old who gets in the way of the police, breaks into the library, and generally makes a nuisance out of herself before eventually (*spoiler*?) solving the mystery.  I really enjoyed this book–it made for great road trip reading–and again, I can’t wait to read the next books!

Rating: Pretty Darn Good

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