Reviews provided by Syndetics
Publishers Weekly Review
Those who can't wait for The End to Lemony Snicket's Series of Unfortunate Events (book 13) due out on October 13 (that's Friday the 13th, naturally) with a 2.5 million-copy first printing can bide their time with The Beatrice Letters, which uncovers, in part, the mystery behind the lady to whom Lemony Snicket dedicates every book. A beautifully designed paper-over-board package contains the correspondence between the title mystery lady and the author, punchout letters that add to the intrigue, a full-color poster by series artist Brett Helquist all safely stowed in a handy accordion file. Miss it if you dare, as Snicket might say. And to be sure Unfortunate fans truly have everything. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
School Library Journal Review
Gr 4-7-Lemony Snicket's last book (HarperCollins, 2006) in this incredibly popular series leaves listeners with some answers and more questions. The tale begins where the last volume left off, with the three Baudelaire orphans trapped at sea in a boat with Count Olaf. The castaways survive a storm and end up on an island where other castaways from other storms have established a quiet life lead by a suspicious facilitator, Ishmael, who eventually forces the orphans to leave the camp. The children find the answers to many secrets, including the fact that their own parents once lived on this island. With the appearance of Kit Snicket and an encounter with Count Olaf, a new orphan joins the story. Will Count Olaf get his just rewards? Will the orphans find peace in this treacherous world? Tim Curry is a marvelous narrator, giving each orphan, villain, and innocent bystander his or her own voice. He also sings a song at the end of the recording about being shipwrecked, which is a wonderful, dark ending to The End. A must for Lemony Snicket fans.-Lisa W. Baker, Chocowinity Middle School, NC (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
After a singularly bad beginning, the Baudelaire orphans, Violet, Klaus, and Sunny, have finally reached the end. The question is, will Book the Thirteenth in A Series of Unfortunate Events meet the expectations of the series' myriad fans? Snicket might put it a somewhat different way: if end simply means to cease, the answer is yes. If, however, end means to complete, the answer is most assuredly no--because though Snicket neatly clips numerous threads in the tragic saga, he leaves others literally fluttering in the breeze. As with the previous books, this one begins where its predecessor left off, with the orphans and the villainous Count Olaf afloat on dangerous open seas. When a storm blows their craft ashore, kindly islanders welcome the orphans, but Olaf is an outcast. Have the children finally found the longed-for last safe place on earth? Not so fast . . . before long, they are once again scrambling to avert disaster and death (Kikbucit, as Sunny puts it when a couple of characters are terminated). If possible, this title is even more preposterous than others in the series (the children help an old friend give birth), as well as considerably longer than some. But frequent references to the other adventures will send Snicket fans back to previous books to delight once again in the idiosyncratic characters, the wry humor, and the wordplay, which has surely increased their vocabulary tenfold. --Stephanie Zvirin Copyright 2006 Booklist
Horn Book Review
(Intermediate) In the thirteenth and final volume of A Series of Unfortunate Events, the Baudelaire orphans find themselves shipwrecked on an island with both their tormentor, the cartoonish Count Olaf, and their ally, an injured and very pregnant Kit Snicket, sister to the omnipresent narrator. Readers will be intrigued to discover a bit more of the Baudelaire parents' past, though little else of their secret society is revealed. Instead, the conflict focuses on the dangers of willful ignorance as a means of safety and is, of course, couched in a series of zanily over-the-top predicaments that make enterprising use of the children's talents. Trademark authorial ticks are in full evidence, and include a three-page riff on the dual meanings of the phrase in the dark along with the forcedly whimsical definitions of terms. As well, the moral equivalency drawn between the Baudelaires (who commit treachery to survive) and their foes (who, apparently, survive solely to commit treachery) will chafe at readers who recognize the importance of mitigating circumstances. Where Snicket excels here is in balancing the expectation of happy ending against his own repeated declarations that none exists. Only a few loose threads resolve, and treachery still abounds, but Violet, Klaus, and Sunny are finally given the opportunity to make their own choices. No longer victims of the inevitable battles between noble ""volunteers"" and villains, they are now willing conscripts in the fight -- and that may be enough to appease their many devoted fans. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.