As you might expect, nothing but woe befalls the unlucky Baudelaire orphans in the eighth grim tale in Lemony Snicket's Series of Unfortunate Events that began with The Bad Beginning
. Ever since the orphans' photographs were plastered across the front page of The Daily Punctilio
in an article falsely accusing them of murder, they have been on the run. Only when they disguise themselves as cheerful hospital volunteers (Volunteers Fighting Disease, to be exact), do they see a possible refuge. Of course, this backfires hideously. Where is their ineffectual guardian, Mr. Poe, when they need him most? Will the evil, greedy Count Olaf be successful in giving poor Violet a cranioectomy at the Heimlich Hospital? Is a heart-shaped balloon really better than water for a thirsty patient? Is no news really good news? As ever, Snicket refuses to comfort young readers with cozy answers and satisfying escapes. And, as ever, there are plenty of rusty blades and horrible plot twists to make us shudder and shameless-but-hilarious wordplay to make us grimace happily. Bring on the next one! (Ages 9 and older) --Karin Snelson
--This text refers to the
From School Library Journal
Grade 4-7-Pity the poor Baudelaire siblings! On the run again from their archenemy Count Olaf, in Lemony Snicket's eight title in the popular series (HarperCollins, 2001) they find themselves thrust into yet another mystery, this time involving a burning building, heart-shaped balloons, kidnapping, unnecessary surgery, and a hospital where paperwork is more important than patients. Tim Curry's ability to seamlessly switch from one fully-voiced character to another is truly astonishing. Whether in the guise of baby Sunny (whose comments are always cogent but generally incomprehensible), the sinister and consummately evil Count Olaf and his equally despicable girlfriend Esme Squalor, or the cheerfully obnoxious leader of Volunteers Fighting Disease (V.F.D.), Curry literally becomes each character. A cliffhanger ending will leave fans eager for the next installment.Cindy Lombardo, Orrville Public Library, OH
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