I love a good series. I love them so much, I usually get obsessed about them. Just a tiny bit.
I’ve begged, borrowed and stolen the Ranger’s Apprentice series and The Chronicles of Narnia. (Okay, I haven’t stolen any. That would be rude.) I nearly have the full Dicey Tillerman series (by Cynthia Voigt) and we have (almost) everything by Beverly Cleary.
Mime and I have hoarded over 45 Boxcar Children books. And let’s not mention my Mandie Mysteries! I have the complete series up to 30. But seriously, Mandie? Let’s not talk them too much. (In my defence I was twelve and deluded that Mandie was cool and not a just a conniving sticky-beak-chocolate-nose.)
But all these series get left behind in the awe inspiring view of Lemony Snicket’s, A Series of Unfortunate Events collection. In fact, I own every. single. book. Want to see?
Of course you do.
From The Bad Beginning to The Ersatz Elevator and all the way to The End, I’ve collected these beauties. (I believe Mime owns two or three, but she’s not as obsessive about collections as I am.) They sit on my desk. And take up half the shelf. Other books might be piled up irreverently, but not my Unfortunate series.
I love them.
We also own 5 of the audio sets. They’re tapes, though, which makes listening difficult. The first two are read by Tim Curry, but the other three are read by Mr. Snicket himself. That. is. cool. (That is, of course, if it IS Lemony Snicket reading them. I could be fooled. Everything else, like his name, is a lie.)
|the audio tapes|
1. The Baudelaire orphans are intelligent bookworms.
Readers ARE intelligent. We deserve recognition for the fact. Plus the Baudelaires are strong, capable, don’t easily freak, and will do anything for each other (even marry Olaf or fake sawing off each other’s heads).
2. Lemony Snicket tells people NOT to read his books.
Despite the fact he’s obviously using reverse-psychology, this is brilliance. Not many people can tell others NOT to read their work…and consequently become a bestseller.
If you are interested in stories with happy endings, you would be better off reading some other book. In this book, not only is there no happy ending, there is no happy beginning and very few happy things in the middle. This is because not very many happy things happened in the lives of the three Baudelaire youngsters. Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire were intelligent children, and they were charming, and resourceful, and had pleasant facial features, but they were extremely unlucky, and most everything that happened to them was rife with misfortune, misery, and despair. I’m sorry to tell you this, but that is how the story goes.The Bad Beginning
3. I still don’t know what VFD means.
I can’t decide if this is truly amazing or annoying. But I’ll settle with “amazing” because who the heck can write an entire series and not resolve ANYTHING. Well, I suppose Count Olaf was resolved. If you can count expiring on a bookshelf while impersonating a pregnant woman who was actually his one-true-love but ditched him due to something about VFD (which doesn’t stand for Volunteer Fire Department, by the way) which also inclues the meaning of the Sugar Bowl and centres around a harpoon gun and poisonous mushrooms, all because of a dude who wears sheep skin and manipulates people.
Yes. There’s that.
4. Sunny had her own language!
Here is a prime example of how Sunny Baudelaire communicated (I believe everyone should communicate like this because it’s so efficient):
“Be quiet this instant,” Olaf ordered.
“Busheney,” Sunny said, which meant something along the lines of, “You’re an evil man with no concern whatsoever for other people.”The Slippery Slope
5. There is no end to the
This story has everything. Crows, hot air balloons, poisonous mushrooms, pond scum, boarding schools with crabs, mind reading, awful food, an optimist, a girl with triangle glasses, triplets called the Quagmires, pinstripe soups, salmon icecream, submarines, horseradish, snakes, references to zombie movies, libraries, a hypochondriac, messy eating, a baby kept in a lasagna dish, weird and wonderful inventions, an elevator, a question mark, a sugar bowl, an island full of people wearing sheep skins, a creepy hospital which specialises in decapitation, a spatula, and Beatrice.
But there is no roast beef.
cait believes VFD means very fabulous doom, which sums up lemony snicket’s writing quite well. she is happy to report she’s reading his next series, all the wrong questions, and loving it. besides reading, cait spends time thinking about reading, planning to read, and being at the library. occasionally she abandons books altogether and writes. oh…wait…