Sunday, December 4, 2011

The Beatrice Letters by Lemony Snicket

Title: The Beatrice Letters
Author: Lemony Snicket
Publication Date: September 2006
Length: 72 pages (hardcover)

The blurb for this book is simply this:
Top secret—only for readers deeply interested in the Baudelaire case. How I pity these readers

With all due respect,
Lemony Snicket

This book is fun, but confusing. Basically, it consists of a series of letters, alternating between letters from Lemony Snicket to Beatrice Baudelaire and letters from Beatrice Baudelaire to Lemony Snicket. However, you'll soon realise that it's not really that simple, and also that the letters are not strictly in chronological order. One conclusion I came to is that you should read The End before you read this book (which I haven't yet). This book came out shortly before The End (the last book in A Series of Unfortunate Events), but I found myself rather lost until I looked things up online, and it seems that things would have been clearer if I'd read the last book.

On the other hand, the book is fun to read. There are letters (of the alphabet) in between the letters (that one writes) (he totally made this confusing on purpose) that you pop out of the page, and at the end you move them around to find what they spell (they can spell two things, neither of which actually gives you any hints). So that was fun.

And of course Lemony Snicket's writing style makes everything he writes fun to read. His writing is so funny that it makes me have to share a whole bunch of quotes with you. So here they are:
"I go to bed early and rise late and feel as if I have hardly slept, probably because I have been reading almost the entire time."
"I never want to be apart from you again, Beatrice, except in the restroom, at work, and when one of us is at a movie that the other does not want to see."
"I received all two hundred pages of your book explaining why you cannot marry me, and I gave the carrier pigeons as much seed as they could eat, and I brushed their feathers with my trembling fingers, and bathed their beaks in my tears."
"I will love you even if you announce that the poetry of Edgar Guest is the best in the world and even if you announce that the work of Zilpha Keatley Snyder is unbearably tedious."
That Zilpha Keatley Snyder line made me sooo happy because I LOVE The Egypt Game and it seems so many people have never heard of it.

So basically, the book is fun in a Lemony Snicket kind of way (a phrase which here means "really quite hilarious"), so if you're a fan of the series this is a must-read. But I'd wait until you're done the 13 books of the series itself before reading this one, because I just found it a bit too confusing not having read the last book.

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