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The ersatz elevator / by Lemony Snicket; illustrations by Brett Helquist.

By: Snicket, Lemony.
Contributor(s): Helquist, Brett.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookSeries: A series of unfortunate events. Publisher: New York : HarperCollins, 2001ISBN: 0-06-440864-7; 9781460755938.Subject(s): Premiers' Reading Challenge : 7-8
Fiction notes: Click to open in new window
Item type Current location Collection Call number Status Date due Barcode Item reserves
Junior Sydenham Library (DIY)
Junior Fiction J SNIC Available IA0556745
Junior Sunshine Library (DIY)
Junior Fiction J SNIC Issued 24/09/2019 IA2027692
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Junior Deer Park Library
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Junior Sunshine Library (DIY)
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Junior Keilor Library (DIY)
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Excerpt provided by Syndetics

A Series of Unfortunate Events #6: The Ersatz Elevator Chapter One The book you are holding in your two hands right now -- assuming that you are, in fact, holding this book, and that you have only two hands -- is one of two books in the world that will show you the difference between the word "nervous" and the word "anxious." The other book, of course, is the dictionary, and if I were you I would read that book instead. Like this book, the dictionary shows you that the word "nervous" means "worried about something"--you might feel nervous, for instance, if you were served prune ice cream for dessert, because you would be worried that it would taste awful--whereas the word "anxious" means "troubled by disturbing suspense," which you might feel if you were served a live alligator for dessert, because you would be troubled by the disturbing suspense about whether you would eat your dessert or it would eat you. But unlike this book, the dictionary also discusses words that are far more pleasant to contemplate. The word "bubble" is in the dictionary, for instance, as is the word "peacock," the word "vacation," and the words "the" "author′s" "execution" "has" "been" "cancelled," which make up a sentence that is always pleasant to hear. So if you were to read the dictionary, rather than this book, you could skip the parts about "nervous" and "anxious" and read about things that wouldn′t keep you up all night long, weeping and tearing out your hair. But this book is not the dictionary, and if you were to skip the parts about "nervous" and "anxious" in this book, you would be skipping the most pleasant sections in the entire story. Nowhere in this book will you find the words "bubble," "peacock," "vacation," or, unfortunately for me, anything about an execution being cancelled. Instead, I′m sorry to say, you will find the words "grief, "despair," and "woeful" as well as the phrases "dark passageway," "Count Olaf in disguise," and "the Baudelaire orphans were trapped," plus an assortment of miserable words and phrases that I cannot bring myself to write down. In short, reading a dictionary might make you feel nervous, because you would worry about finding it very boring, but reading this book will make you feel anxious, because you will be troubled by the disturbing suspense in which the Baudelaire orphans find themselves, and if I were you I would drop this book right out of your two or more hands and curl up with a dictionary instead, because all the miserable words I must use to describe these unfortunate events are about to reach your eyes. "I imagine you must be nervous," Mr. Poe said. Mr. Poe was a banker who had been put in charge of the Baudelaire orphans following the death of their parents in a horrible fire. I am sorry to say that Mr. Poe had not done a very good job so far, and that the Baudelaires had learned that the only thing they could rely on with Mr. Poe was that he always had a cough. Sure enough, as soon as he finished his sentence, he took out his white handkerchief and coughed into it. The flash of white cotton was practically the only thing the Baudelaire orphans could see. Violet, Klaus, and Sunny were standing with Mr. Poe in front of an enormous apartment building on Dark Avenue, a street in one of the fanciest districts in the city. Although Dark Avenue was just a few blocks away from where the Baudelaire mansion had been, the three children had never been in this neighborhood before, and they had assumed that the "dark" in Dark Avenue was simply a name and nothing more, the way a street named George Washington Boulevard does not necessarily indicate that George Washington lives there or the way Sixth Street has not been divided into six equal parts. But this afternoon the Baudelaires realized that Dark Avenue was more than a name. It was an appropriate description. Rather than streetlamps, placed at regular intervals along the sidewalk were enormous trees the likes of which the children had never seen before--and which they could scarcely see now. High above a thick and prickly trunk, the branches of the trees drooped down like laundry hung out to dry, spreading their wide, flat leaves out in every direction, like a low, leafy ceiling over the Baudelaires′ heads. This ceiling blocked out all the light from above, so even though it was the middle of the afternoon, the street looked as dark as evening--if a bit greener. It was hardly a good way to make three orphans feel welcome as they approached their new home. "You have nothing to be nervous about," Mr. Poe said, putting his handkerchief back in his pocket. "I realize some of your previous guardians have caused a little... A Series of Unfortunate Events #6: The Ersatz Elevator . Copyright © by Lemony Snicket . Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. Excerpted from The Ersatz Elevator by Lemony Snicket All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-8-The Baudelaire children are sent to live with yet another relative by their well-meaning but befuddled guardian, Mr. Poe, in the sixth adventure in the series by Lemony Snicket (HarperCollins, 2001). At first, they seem to have hit the jackpot, landing in a penthouse apartment owned by Esme and Jerome Squalor that contains too many rooms to count. However, they soon discover that their new caretakers are ruled by the whims of society, and they are forced to drink, dress, and act according to the "in" crowd's wishes. They are even required to climb a ridiculous number of stairs to get to the apartment each day because elevators are "out." The children are worried about their missing friends, the Quagmire triplets who were kidnapped by Count Olaf in the last book and, of course, their conviction that Count Olaf is hiding somewhere in the building just waiting to steal the Baudelaire fortune. Tim Curry narrates this adventure with a sly, sneering voice that captures the action perfectly. He is especially good when portraying Esme's snobbish tones and Jerome's hearty, jovial voice. Libraries with a strong Lemony Snicket following will want to purchase this audiobook.-Katherine Devine, Westminster Academy, Elizabeth, NJ(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

Gr. 3-6. The Ersatz Elevator, "Book the Sixth," in A Series of Unfortunate Events, opens with the hapless Baudelaire orphans, Violet, Klaus, and Sunny, climbing up very dark stairs to the penthouse, the home of their new guardians, Mr. and Mrs. Squalor. Genial Mr. Squalor seems genuinely delighted to have the children. Mrs. Squalor is a different matter: her life is ruled by "what's in" (aqueous martinis, pinstripe suits, and orphans) and "what's out" (alcoholic martinis, light, and elevators). Mr. Squalor's life is ruled by Mrs. Squalor. Children will enjoy the humorous barbs aimed at Mrs. Squalor and her ilk. The plot thickens with the reappearance of the nefarious Count Olaf, first in disguise to do his dastardly deeds and then unmasked to sneer at the Baudelaires. "Book the Seventh," The Vile Village, pokes wicked fun at the saying "It takes a village to raise a child" and at aphorisms in general: "The quoting of an aphorism, like the angry barking or a dog or the smell of overcooked broccoli, rarely indicates that something helpful is about to happen." Sure enough, the Baudelaires are soon adopted by an entire town whose inhabitants look upon the orphans as free labor. The Baudelaires struggle to solve the riddling messages that could lead them to rescue the Quagmire triplets, while trying to avoid being burned at the stake. Series fans will enjoy the quick pace, entertaining authorial asides, and over-the-top characterizations, and Brett Helquist's droll pencil drawings will add to their reading pleasure. --Carolyn Phelan

Horn Book Review

Now ensconced in a penthouse with status-seeking guardians, the Baudelaire orphans fret about their friends (the missing Quagmire triplets) and enemies (the always-lurking Count Olaf). This installment also features an intriguing hint that the series' dedicatee, the ill-fated Beatrice, plays a role in the orphans' fate, though the plot devices and narrative voice remain unvaried from the previous five volumes in the series. From HORN BOOK Fall 2001, (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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