27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
Original and Brilliant,
This review is from: The Bad Beginning (A Series of Unfortunate Events No.1) (Hardcover)
When my younger brother first bought this book, and when I saw its size, cover and title, I thought it was exclusively written for little kids. However I read it, and had a very pleasant surprise. Lemony Snicket (AKA Daniel Handler) has a witty and, in some ways, surreal style of writing.
This story sets the scene for the following twelve novels (all but two of which have been published), and concerns the three Baudelaire children: Violet, Klaus and Sunny. Their parents die in a house-fire, and they are taken into the custody of the villainous Count Olaf.
Monobrowed Olaf has a plan to steal the children's inherited fortune......though I don't want to spoil anything.
Some of the one-liners are so obtuse they are hysterically funny, and though the story itself seems to tread some fairly well-worn ground in the plot-stakes, the language and wit raises this series well above your average novel. Brilliant.