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The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag (Flavia de Luce, #2)
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The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag (Flavia de Luce #2)

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3.99  ·  Rating details ·  37,616 Ratings  ·  4,485 Reviews
Flavia de Luce, a dangerously smart eleven-year-old with a passion for chemistry and a genius for solving murders, thinks that her days of crime-solving in the bucolic English hamlet of Bishop’s Lacey are over—until beloved puppeteer Rupert Porson has his own strings sizzled in an unfortunate rendezvous with electricity. But who’d do such a thing, and why? Does the madwoma ...more
Paperback, 364 pages
Published February 8th 2011 by Bantam (first published 2010)
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Popular Answered Questions

Darlene They can be read out of order. This is the first book that I have read in the series and I am getting a feel for the story and characters.
Carol Caldwell I didn't read the blurb, so I'm not sure what you are referring to in the sentence structure. The book is easy to read and moves at a quick pace, just…moreI didn't read the blurb, so I'm not sure what you are referring to in the sentence structure. The book is easy to read and moves at a quick pace, just as Flavia flits through the pages. The vocabulary is adult and English, maybe that's what threw the sentence structure off.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jeffrey Keeten
Nov 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can't really explain it, but I really like this series. I don't read books like this and yet here I am with book two under my belt and looking forward to book three. I actually liked this book better than the first book The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. I was talked into reading the first book, and prejudged the book which it took 3/4 of the book to convince me that I really was having a good time. With book two I picked it up already convinced I would like it and I wasn't disappointed. ...more
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
I see I'm not the only one unthrilled by this second book. There are no spoilers in what follows, but if you loved the first one and are excited for this one, read no further. Or if you do, don't complain to me that I killed your joy.

This story meandered way too much to keep my interest, and I thought the plot was dreadfully thin. Lots of window dressing and trying too hard to be cute. It felt very much like a 70-something-year-old man trying to sound like an 11-year-old girl. And of course, th
...more
Richard Derus
Oct 29, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
These are cute, cute, cute books! I don't buy it, a kid being this kind of smart, but I don't care. The plot's a little on the thin side, but I don't care. The fun of these books is the delightful fantasy of Eng-er-land post-WWII seen through the eyes of eleven-year-old Flavia, daughter of decayed privilege.

The murdered man, a puppeteer/drug dealer, *richly* deserved killing, which always makes a mystery more fun for me. His relict, of sorts, is of course a suspect, but her Delicate Condition (w
...more
Laurie
Mar 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Flavia returns! Oh, delicious young poisoner Flavia de Luce, cousin to Wednesday Addams, Sherlock Holmes as an 11 year-old girl. A delight.
Heather
May 08, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag picks up a little more than a month after The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie leaves off, so it was good to read them consecutively. It's summer in Bishop's Lacey, the little village outside of which eleven-year-old Flavia de Luce lives with her father and two older sisters in the old family manor, Buckshaw. Flavia's relaxing in the churchyard when she sees that she has company: it turns out that the van of a famous puppeteer, Rupert Porson, has broken ...more
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
Mord är ingen barnlek (The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag), book 2 in the Flavia de Luce series.

Delightful! That's is precisely what this book is. Just a delightful story with the precocious Flavia de Luce. This time is she trying to find out who killed the famous puppeteer Rupert Porson and she does her usually way, by being curious, listening to gossip and putting two and two together. And, thinking of ways of killing people with poisons..especially her sisters.

Flavia de Luce is such a w
...more
Carolyn
Jun 13, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love this series, especially the feisty 11 year old Flavia deLuce at the centre of it all. England in the 1950s must have been a golden time for childhood. Flavia is left totally alone to roam the countryside on her bike, visit whoever she wants and poke her nose in wherever she wants. Of course things might be different if her mother hadn't died at her birth and it was left to her distant father and two hateful sisters (who Flavia may end up poisoning before the series ends) to bring her up. ...more
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
I liked the first book a little more. I think the mystery was better crafted in the first book. However, it was still quite a mystery. This one was quite sad due to the subject matter. I think that was another reason it didn't sit as well with me. Flavia is her usual self. Very precocious and highly astute and observant. She makes a formidable detective. Much in the style of the highly esteemed Miss Marple. One that people will often overlook because they seem unassuming and not the type who cou ...more
Adina
The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag is the 2nd book in the Flavia De Luce series. I liked the novel less than the first one as I could not connect with the characters in the beginning and I was a little bit annoyed by Flavia. That changed soon enough and the book became entertaining, as I was expecting.

For those who do not know this series, it is about a 12 years old girl living in an old English mansion with her father and two sisters after the 2nd World War. Flavia is very curios, attenti
...more
Brooke
Jun 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Even better than the first one, "The Weed that Strings the Hangman's Bag" was so lovely!!!

These books are so unique because what Alan Bradley does is takes his readers through layers of imagination. When I read his books I literally see everything and I'm transported to a different time. He is so great at writing characters and setting its so fun and fantastic! This book had a charming plot even though it was about murder. The puppeteer idea was very storybook and had me hooked from the very be
...more
Lisa Vegan
I think I liked this second book even better than I did the first book in the series, even though I didn’t get to experience the same novelty of Flavia as a character.

I love Flavia and Flavia’s narration. She’s such a hoot. It helps to have a very warped sense of humor to enjoy this mystery series, and I am the proud possessor of a warped sense of humor, which allows me to enjoy all sorts of humor.

I knew too much about the mystery too soon, sort of, but the whole joy of this series is Flavia as
...more
Carol
I could only barely make it through one Harry Potter novel even though they are very imaginative and popular. Yet I am addicted to Flavia de Luce books as much as Flavia is addicted to chemistry, solving mysteries and devouring horehound sticks. Flavia has a hilarious and sweet view of her world and she make you want to be a part of it.


Eleven year old Flavia lives in Buckshaw, an old estate on the edge of Bishop's Lacey. She is know by all the locals as that "de Luce girl" flying about town on
...more
Elyse
I skipped the other 2 books I have out from the library to dive right into this! One of my favorite lines in this book, "Take myself, for instance: I am often thought of as being remarkably bright, and yet my brains, more often than not, are busily devising new and interesting ways of bringing my enemies to sudden, gagging, writhing, agonizing death." Oh Flavia! Such a funny, smart ass. And she's only 11! Another delightful murder mystery in which Flavia de Luce is miles ahead of the police. Ver ...more
Melissa
Give me resistance, give me marching in the streets, and then give me books about an eleven-year-old chemist who rides her bike around the village solving crimes and threatening to poison her sisters for the end of the day when all I want is to try to take my mind off of how fucking shameful & reprehensible my country is.
Tatiana
Apr 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all Flavia de Luce fans
Another lovely and funny Flavia de Luce mystery.

One afternoon Flavia stumbles upon a traveling puppet show van at the local church's graveyard. The van is broken and in the temporary absence of the mechanic, stranded in Bishop's Lacy for a few days. Not to waste their time, performers decide to do a couple of shows to entertain local public. Of course, Flavia doesn't hesitate to befriend the famous puppeteer Rupert Porson and his beautiful (and pregnant) assistant. Tragedy strikes when during th
...more
Lorraine M. Thompson
Feb 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I read this book because I fell in like with the protagonist Flavia de Luce in "The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie". (And yes, I do sometimes select a book to read by its cover which is the main reason I picked up "The Sweetness...It had a crow on the cover and I am a huge corvoid fan!).

I just learned that there is a new Flavia book out and an totally looking forward to reading it.

Anyways, how can you not like a writer who pens:

"If you remember nothing else, remember this: Inspiration from
...more
Stacey
Oh Flavia, you and your poison...

This second installment in the Flavia De Luce series was a bit slower than the first (the murder doesn't even occur until half-way through the book!) but more revealing of the De Luce family background, which made up for the slower start. Flavia is freakishly observant and manipulative, and she's 11 years old.

The mysteries are told from the viewpoint of a very precocious, highly intelligent child. She misses things that an adult would grasp immediately, but she
...more
Kimberly
I quite enjoyed my second reading of this novel, this time via audio. The narrator was great and completely captured the very essence of our young protagonist. I often found myself remarking on how smart Flavia was and how I envied her knowledge of chemistry, for which, admittedly, I've never really had an affinity. There were times when there were almost too many references to chemistry for me, but I think that's because I was trying so hard to store them away in my mental encyclopedia. Conside ...more
Niina
Mar 13, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, dekkari
Jo Alan Bradleyn ensimmäinen, suloisesta myrkynkeittäjästä Flavia de Lucesta kirjoittama teos Piiraan maku makea hurmasi, ja sarjan toinen osa Kuolema ei ole lasten leikkiä jatkaa samalla tasokkaalla ja koukuttavalla linjalla.

Bishop's Laceyyn saapuu kuuluisa nukketeatteritaitelija Rupert Porson. Flavialle käy nopeasti selväksi millainen ihminen Rupert on ja alkaa hienovaraisesti käärimään auki salaisuuksien päälle ohuelti kiedottuja verhoja. Rupert kuolee kesken Jaakko ja pavunvarsi-esityksen ja
...more
Beth Cato
Apr 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
I don't read many mystery books, but I am hooked on this series--and have gotten my mom hooked as well. In this second book, 11-year-old Flavia continues her adventures in the British countryside where she roams wild with her unhealthy interest in murder and poison. In this book, a visiting puppeteer is murdered, and the cast of suspects is wide. Bradley, a Canadian, has a magnificent knack for creating characters who are brilliant and quirky in that perfectly British mold. Really, it would be a ...more
Kathy
Flavia de Luce is one of the most delightful characters to come along in contemporary mystery fiction in some time. Introduced to this charming character in The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, she continues to entertain and engage the reader in this second novel of the series. Bradley in his writing, full of wit and humor, is able to spin tales that are totally absorbing, literally the kind you don't want to put down and can't wait to pick up again. The reader is definitely left hungry for m ...more
Mikko Saari
Apr 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Splendid. Better than the first part, which was already really good. Flavia is a lovely character, but the other cast is full of interesting people. The crime that has happened is a curious one, with lots of fuzzy detail, but the little chemist Flavia manages to figure everything out, as usual.
Sara
Jan 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bradley ups the ante with The Weed that Strings the Hangman’s Bag, his second Flavia deLuce novel in which our spunky heroine (an eleven year old budding chemist with a passion for poison) investigates the sudden death of a celebrity puppeteer. And of course, the mystery she sets out to solve twists and turns along adding another possible victim, and quirky hilarity ensues.

I usually approach the second installment of any series warily. After finishing The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, and
...more
Pam ☼Because Someone Must Be a Thorn☼ Tee
I have to say, Alan Bradley's ability to evoke a time and place is simply amazing. Whether I enjoyed the mystery or not I would probably read this series just for the opportunity to escape to these small towns in 1950s England.

IF you adored the SWEETNESS AT THE BOTTOM OF THE PIE I hardly think you need me to urge you on to read Flavia #2. However, if you are like me and somewhat on the line as to whether to continue, let me give you a little nudge to go ahead and pick this book up too. First, th
...more
Hande
Jun 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4,5 tähteä.
Aisling
Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3,5 Sterne
Etwas schwächer als der erste Teil, aber immer noch richtig gut. Ich muss wohl weiterlesen :-)
Marleen
Jan 07, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was send to me by Bookdagger for my honest review.

This is the second book by Alan Bradley featuring the precocious Flavia de Luce.
Flavia is eleven years old, the youngest of three sisters who live with their philatelist and rather absent father in a mansion in the country-side in England in the 1950's.
Flavia could easily have been a lonely and sad little girl, bullied by her sisters, half believing that she caused her mother's death and more or less ignored by her father, but she's far
...more
Sandra Bašić
Jul 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Flavia de Luce bila bi jedna sasvim obična 11-godišnjakinja da već od malih nogu nije zainteresirana za laboratorijska „kemijanja“, u svakoj situaciji. Međutim, hobi joj je i rješavanje pravih zločina u kojima svesrdno pomaže inspektoru Hewittu svojim dječjim opažanjima.

Priča je ovo o dvoje ljudi, Rupertu i Nialli, koji putuju zemljom priređujući lutkarske predstave. Kada stignu u Bishop's Lacey, Flavia je oduševljena jer je kao i svako dijete zainteresirana vidjeti pravu lutkarsku predstavu. K
...more
j
The characters are lightly amusing in that British way, and Flavia is much less annoying in print than she was as an audiobook character, but the mystery this time around is rather arbitrary and lacking even the modicum of suspense that propelled The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. I suppose it isn't very plausible that Flavia would be involved in another death-defying case, but a little more intrigue would be welcome.

It is a fun series, though. I like the way Flavia's brilliance as a chemis
...more
rachel
Jun 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Den 2 Band der Flavia de Luce Reihe finde ich sogar noch ein Tick besser als den ersten! Die Reihe würde ich allen ans Herz legen :)

Mehr will ich dazu eigentlich nicht sagen, da ich nicht spoilern will und außerdem gibt es wirklich schöne Videorezis von Youtubern wie z.b. die von den Glimmerfeen!

Ich liebe Flavia einfach, sie ist einzigartig und der Schreibstil von Alan Bradley mag vielleicht schwer sein, ist aber auch sehr unterhaltsam! Das Cover ist sehr gut gelungen und mehr gibt es eigentlich
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

With an education in electronic engineering, Alan worked at numerous radio and television stations in Ontario, and at Ryerson Polytechnical Institute (now Ryerson University) in Toronto, before becoming Director of Television Engineering in the media centre at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, where
...more
More about Alan Bradley...

Other Books in the Series

Flavia de Luce (9 books)
  • The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie (Flavia de Luce, #1)
  • A Red Herring Without Mustard (Flavia de Luce, #3)
  • I Am Half-Sick of Shadows (Flavia de Luce, #4)
  • Speaking from Among the Bones (Flavia de Luce, #5)
  • The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches (Flavia de Luce, #6)
  • As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust (Flavia de Luce, #7)
  • Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew'd (Flavia de Luce, #8)
  • The Grave's a Fine and Private Place (Flavia de Luce, #9)

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“I am often thought of as being remarkably bright, and yet my brains, more often than not, are busily devising new and interesting ways of bringing my enemies to sudden, gagging, writhing, agonizing death.” 111 likes
“If you remember nothing else, remember this: Inspiration from outside one's self is like the heat in an oven. It makes passable Bath buns. But inspiration from within is like a volcano: It changes the face of the world.” 107 likes
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