There are some surprises. Flavia is almost twelve now, and has experienced a year that would knock the wind out of most people. Flavia is definitively NOT most people. She is a force to be reckoned with by almost every single person and event encountered. Some things remain unchanged. Her father is still distant. Her older sisters are still annoying. But, facing the truth of the revelation at the end of the last book sets the family on a new, mysterious and sometimes treacherous course.
Off they go to meet the train that is carrying her mother home. Who is the young man who tries to get a message to Flavia, and ends up dead on the train tracks? Why is Winston Churchill at the station? Why does he have a message for Flavia? Does it have something to do with her parents and their travels during WWII? We are left to wonder...as is the case with all of Flavia's mysterious adventures.
Flavia holds her place as one of my very favorite characters from all of my reading. She is an astute and capable narrator. Her charm, wit and intelligence continue to strengthen my admiration...and she is so funny! She loves a challenge and does not back down from any new development. She is growing up, and I am keen to see what the future has in store for her. Emotional and touching, this is a book that changes what we might expect in the final four books planned for her.