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A Fortunate start with sly humor

  • Dec 1, 2008
Yes, these are kids books, but my wife and my son, both older and more mature than the target audience, have already read (that is to say devoured, in Mark's case, finishing the 13-book series in 1 week) and recommended the books, and the movie (Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events (Widescreen Edition)) introducing the characters invites further curiosity about the books.

So, Book the First is a good start, with sly humor, the occasional wink at the camera, and enough (and bad enough but no more) unfortunate events to propel the story forward nicely.

Next up: The Reptile Room (A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 2)

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review by . November 28, 2004
On the day that the Baudelaire children receive the news that their parents are dead, their lives take a serious turn for the worst. With family friend Mr. Poe acting as executor of their parents' will, they move in with he and his family until more permanent arrangements can be made. These "arrangements" come eventually in the form of the menacing Count Olaf. Count Olaf is an alleged "distant" relative with whom the children must go to live (in accordance with their parents' wishes -- that they …
review by . November 01, 2004
Dear Reader,    THE BAD BEGINNING is the first of a series of books entitled "A Series of Unfortunate Events." The author, Lemony Snicket (whose real name is Daniel Handler) warns the reader several times: on the back cover of the book, in the opening section of the book, and several times throughout the book; that the book is "extremely unpleasant" and if you like nice, fluffy, happy stories that you should put the book down and read something else.    THE …
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Todd Stockslager ()
Ranked #36
I love reading and writing about what I have read, making the connections and marking the comparisons and contrasts. God has given man the amazing power to invent language and the means to record it which … more
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Make no mistake.The Bad Beginningbegins badly for the three Baudelaire children, and then gets worse. Their misfortunes begin one gray day on Briny Beach when Mr. Poe tells them that their parents perished in a fire that destroyed their whole house. "It is useless for me to describe to you how terrible Violet, Klaus, and even Sunny felt in the time that followed," laments the personable (occasionally pedantic) narrator, who tells the story as if his readers are gathered around an armchair on pillows. But of course what follows is dreadful. The children thought it was bad when the well-meaning Poes bought them grotesque-colored clothing that itched. But when they are ushered to the dilapidated doorstep of the miserable, thin, unshaven, shiny-eyed, money-grubbing Count Olaf, they know that they--and their family fortune--are in real trouble. Still, they could never have anticipated how much trouble. While it's true that the events that unfold in Lemony Snicket's novels are bleak, and things never turn out as you'd hope, these delightful, funny, linguistically playful books are reminiscent of Roald Dahl (rememberJames and the Giant Peachand his horrid spinster aunts), Charles Dickens (the orphaned Pip inGreat Expectationswithout the mysterious benefactor), and Edward Gorey (The Gashlycrumb Tinies). There is no question that young readers will want to read the continuing unlucky adventures of the Baudelaire children inThe Reptile RoomandThe Wide Window. (Ages 9 and older)--Karin ...
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ISBN-10: 0064407667
ISBN-13: 978-0064407663
Author: Lemony Snicket
Genre: Children's Books, Teens
Publisher: HarperCollins
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