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Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Exlibrary hardcover in dust jacket- light reader wear Has all the usual library marks, stickers, and stamps.
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29 Myths on the Swinster Pharmacy Hardcover – February 11, 2014

3.0 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 4–8—Innovative in both its style and gloomy dénouement, this picture-book mystery unfolds as an episodic essay of 29 seemingly random observations. It employs both narrative and expository voices as it describes an old-timey downtown pharmacy with "Styrofoam heads wearing wigs" in the window and employees wearing long white coats.The Swinster Pharmacy remains unchanged in what is "usually a quiet town," and this timelessness presents a puzzle that two children investigate tirelessly as they are certain that there is something terribly wrong with this establishment. Careful observers will find clues in the illustrations that supply reasons for the seemingly gratuitous obsessiveness. The story is written in a droll, but authoritative voice reminiscent of pre-1960s journalese, and the art has a flat, understated style that is reminiscent of Marc Simont's work. The two friends are essentially reporters, and their reports read like poetic fragments: "15. The building is a perfect square./We measured it last night," "18. Something about the door is electric as opposed to acoustic./It closes like a hiss,/like the serpent in the Garden of Eden/or a slow, dead tire." This picture book is a wee bit odd in tone, it is true. Nevertheless, it could be used a springboard for readers to develop and solve the implicit whodunit story, or as an opportunity to analyze what constitutes solid evidence versus allusive facts.—Sara Lissa Paulson, The American Sign Language and English Lower School, New York City

From Booklist

This peculiar picture book collects 29 “myths” about a small-town pharmacy, delivered by a young pair of siblings (and their West Highland terrier) who are obsessed with this mysterious establishment. The “myths” themselves, a bemused selection of statements, questions, and wonderings, are by turns poetic (“When the town aches, the Swinster Pharmacy aches with it”) and pedestrian (“I think the Swinster Pharmacy is closed on weekends”). Brown paints the titular pharmacy a drab gray that permeates the rest of the story like a dense fog, and her children, dressed in yellow, orange, and red, stand out against the inky obscurity like the incisive investigators they are. The sum total of Snicket’s rambling curiosities and Brown’s attentive detail, indelibly charming and aggressively unique, will not be everyone’s cup of tea. But the small trim size, thoughtful design, and generally exceptional production values (the dust jacket unfolds to reveal a poster of the Swinster Pharmacy on one side and a map of the town on the other) make it an especially special package for the right reader.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Although this is hardly mainstream Snicket, the latest from the best-selling author is always reason to take note. Grades K-3. --Thom Barthelmess
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 7 and up
  • Grade Level: 1 and up
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: McSweeney's McMullens; First Edition edition (February 11, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1938073789
  • ISBN-13: 978-1938073786
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 7.5 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #617,695 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
If you're thinking of purchasing this, you should be aware that the book is not really presenting a narrative story. It's a set of observations about the Swinster Pharmacy that are meant to raise suspicions. Part of the fun of the book is in making inferences from the observations and coming to realize that the pharmacy is a mystery, without having that mystery resolved. There's a map included that adds to the fun.

It's not for everyone, but it offers something unique and fun.
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Format: Hardcover
There is a pharmacy the next town over. A brother and sister come to visit it to see what it is all about. What do they sell there? Why do people come to it? The brother and sister contemplate 29 things about the pharmacy.

The illustrations are very well done. I enjoyed looking at them more than I enjoyed the story.

This book was completely confusing. I expected to read 29 mysterious things about this pharmacy. But many of the pages had other things like when the boy said, "I was going to write a poem about the Swinster Pharmacy." This was counted as one of the myths. I felt like Snicket ran out of things to say after number 7. I was completely disappointed in this book and find no reason why anyone would want to read it.
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Format: Hardcover
I am not a fan of this book. For one thing...it should be titled 29 Observations on the Swinster Pharmacy as there are no "myths" (in the truest sense as there is really nothing mythical about the pharmacy) involved. I've not read the Lemony Snicket books before, so maybe it is just not my style. The reason I gave it 3 stars is because my 5 year old son likes it. It's not one that he gets excited about, but he likes it. It's okay.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Illustrations are great. Story is beyond bizarre. My kids didn't get it. I don't get it. Super disappointed with this book and would return it if I could. Maybe someone can explain to me the redeeming qualities of this writing? Baffled.
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Format: Hardcover
The illustrations are beautiful, but this book left my kids confused and me without an answer for them. The last myth, "People get sick all the time, but nobody gets better because of the Swinster Pharmacy," is anticlimatic and pointless. Don't bother with this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
GREAT. CANT GO WRONG WITH DANIEL HANDLER
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