“The Bad Beginning” – Lemony Snicket

Quick Statistics

  • “The Bad Beginning” by Lemony Snicket
  • Middle Grade Fiction
  • Read as an ebook.
  • 4/5 stars
  • Finished on October 8, 2015

Official Synopsis

Dear Reader,

I’m sorry to say that the book you are holding in your hands is extremely unpleasant. It tells an unhappy tale about three very unlucky children. Even though they are charming and clever, the Baudelaire siblings lead lives filled with misery and woe. From the very first page of this book when the children are at the beach and receive terrible news, continuing on through the entire story, disaster lurks at their heels. One might say they are magnets for misfortune.

In this short book alone, the three youngsters encounter a greedy and repulsive villain, itchy clothing, a disastrous fire, a plot to steal their fortune, and cold porridge for breakfast.

It is my sad duty to write down these unpleasant tales, but there is nothing stopping you from putting this book down at once and reading something happy, if you prefer that sort of thing.

With all due respect,
Lemony Snicket

My Thoughts/Summary

These books were RAVED about throughout my childhood but I never really got into them. People LOVE these books, like they really do and have such a huge attachment to them. Maybe this isn’t as broad of appeal of Harry Potter or…I don’t know maybe I’m missing something but this book wasn’t out of the ballpark amazing.

These books follow the Baudelaire Orphans and…the series of unfortunate events that follow them. In this first book, they are sent to live with the extremely creepy Count Olaf who is a family member. The adults in these books are idiots, and the children are beyond smart and see through his evil plans to get to their fortune.

This book was…not at all what I was expecting. I could see myself as a kid LOVING these maybe, but I was also overly smart. Olaf was so squicky for me that it actually made it physically uncomfortable to read. That being said, I found the writing style interesting, and I had no idea that the formula for these was moving from one guardian to the next. That’s what made me give this book 3 stars, because I couldn’t understand how someone would want to read like…12 books with seriously pedophilic overtones.

As a kid, I would have devoured these I think, especially where the narrator specifies what words mean and such but then again, I really don’t like terrible things happening. This book originally got 3 stars from me, but when I found out it was moving from guardian to guardian and at some point with a broader plotline I decided to read more and bumped up my rating. I actually find that this is a book that parents should read before giving to their kids, only because of the pedophilic overtones, just to make sure they know of any questions that might arise.

Follow-Up Links

(this post does contain affiliate links that help me keep the site going. please consider purchasing using these links if you’re interested in this book! thanks so much xo r)

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