Lemony Snicket: The Unauthorized Autobiography
is bizarre, abstruse ("a word which here means 'cryptic'"), and truly entertaining. Would you expect anything less from the mystery man behind A Series of Unfortunate Events (The Bad Beginning
, The Ersatz Elevator
, etc.)? Virtually every detail of the volume has Snicket's indelible mark, from the book jacket (reversible to help readers disguise this "extremely dangerous" and "objectionable" autobiography) to the copyright page text to the intentionally blurry and bewildering black-and-white photographs appearing throughout. An apparently false obituary for Lemony Snicket sets the stage for what turns into a series of mind-boggling bundles of coded information passed from hand to hand, gleaned from newspapers blowing through streets, pages from a journal addressed to "Dear Dairy," blueprints of ships, minutes from secret meetings, and a lot of edited and disputed commentary. The question is, do we finally discover the meaning of VFD? You know you're not going to get a straight answer. But any fan of Snicket will have a lot of fun trying. (Ages 9 and older) --Emilie Coulter
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From Publishers Weekly
A certain maniacal glee went into the creation of this archly humorous volume. Beginning with the suggestion on the front flap of the dust jacket to disguise its dangerous contents (Make use of this book's reversible jacket immediately), readers will know they're in possession of something deliciously left of normal. The jacket reverses to display a hilarious parody of Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events covers, entitled The Pony Party! and featuring The Luckiest Kids in the World! by Loney M. Setnick. Meanwhile, the contents lead readers on a merry goose chase. The 13 (naturally) chapters burst with red herrings, non sequiturs, mysterious letters, diary entries and so on not to mention fading black-and-white photographs with captions such as Total strangers and W?H?O? The narrative makes for a most satisfying tease, larded with such Snicketisms as For various reasons, portions of this chapter have been changed or made up entirely, including this sentence. It would seem that Snicket's obituary from the highly unreliable Daily Punctilio (which is reproduced in the book) is premature, and that there will indeed be more installments about the Baudelaires, though nothing is certain in the end and readers are left nearly as in the dark about Snicket as they were at the start. Of course, this is all part of the fun, guaranteed to make the author's fans itch to get their hands on a copy of this devious romp masquerading as an autobiography. Ages 10-up.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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