Book Reviews

Book Review :: The Bad Beginning: Book the First (A Series of Unfortunate Events) by Lemony Snicket


RATING: 💀💀💀💀💀


SYNOPSIS: The Bad Beginning is the first novel of the children novel series A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket. The novel tells the story of three children, Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire, who become orphans following a fire and are sent to live with Count Olaf, who attempts to steal their inheritance.

If you are interested in stories with happy endings, you would be better off reading some other book. In this book, not only is there no happy ending, there is no happy beginning and very few happy things in the middle

-Lemony Snicket

Before I start this review, I should let you [the reader] know that in an attempt to compensate for the misery this book put me through, I have decided to share adorable animals gifs between every few paragraphs expressing my thoughts and opinions about this book. Enjoy!


Boy, if there was ever a time I should have followed some good ole advice it should have been right after I read the warning about this book found in the author’s introduction…

But, alas, I didn’t follow instructions and still (foolishly) expected some type of happy ending to take place to which (of course) didn’t happen.

This is the first book of 2017 that has ever gotten 5 skulls. The irony about this book is that it was so terrible that it was so good! I couldn’t give it 5 stars because I hated it but I couldn’t give it no stars because it lived up to its misery. Ha!


I guess I should start with the characters:

Poor Violet, Klaus, and Sunny are now orphans; their parents died in a horrible fire that also destroyed their beloved home. Everything about the Baudelaire children makes me wonder why all the bad luck goes to them and none of the *annoyed, mocking voice* STEEEEWPID adults they’re consistently surrounded by. They’re all extremely intelligent, kind hearted, and wonderful kids. I mean, duh! The whole point of this story is clear in the title itself, but daaaamn!

I hate/despise Count Olaf. Who couldn’t?! Selfish, cruel, manipulative, deceiving, and terribly intelligent… that’s a terrifying combination! I love the books that make the bad guys appear as stupid, but oh no… Lemony Snicket had to make this guy a total monster. At least his appearance (from how the book describes him) matches his cold-blooded… heart? If he was real, I’d also say he was a sexual/child predator since he forces Violet to marry him in what has to be the worst wedding ever orchestrated, with stupid adults who believe they’re all part of an innocent play. Yeah, yeah. He was only marrying Violet to get his hands on the Baudelaire’s fortune, but this scene was still cringe-worthy.

However, as evil as Count Olaf is, i feel that the real villain in this book is the financial banker and the one left in charge of the children’s care- Mr. Poe. That’s right! He’s the true villain! Why?!
1. He’s stupid.
2. He ignores the most obvious signs that the children are in danger.
3. He’s stupid.
4. If he can’t control his cough, and his health, then why should he be left in control of the well being of the Baudelaire children?!
5. He’s stupid.
6. He is so easy to manipulate and deceive. Why is he even a financial banker?!
7. Re-read 1, 3, and 5!!! Seriously! He’s the epitome of stupid!

Onto the plot that destroyed my hopes and dreams that every book should have a happy ending…

Even the beach scenery described in the beginning of the story sounds pretty emo-ish. This is where the children are found and given the news that their parents have died in a fire.

Throughout the story, they try to figure out how to survive, if not counter, Count Olaf’s abusive treatment of them to no such luck.

The small, happy moments (2 or 3 the most) that take place between every other miserable event are never fully enjoyable because the small speck of hope you think is alive is reduced to disappointment when each event following that one happy moment feels like a punishment to your enjoyment. It’s like the book is mocking your happy feelings like, “Oh I see you enjoy reading how the children feel happy for once. Let’s take that smile away! Better yet, let’s turn it upside down!!! 😈😈😈😈😈”

Whatever hopes and dreams the children have that they might find the level of happiness and love they once had is repetitively denied.

Just as I was beginning to think that maybe there would be a happy ending, the author again reminds the hopeful reader that no such thing like it will happen in this book. Once again, the Baudelaire children are escorted to an unknown relative. With all their terrible luck so far there is no doubt that their luck will grow worse.


I’ve never felt more depressed to read a book like I have felt for the second part of The Bad Beginning. I’ve purposely put off reading the second book (which is my current read) because I already know it’s going to be depressing.

Am I saying these books are boring reads? Heavens no!

They’re just incredibly depressing!

“It’s just a book- a fiction book!”
“That’s the whole point! It’s supposed to be depressing!”
Mocking-spongebob “It’S jUsT a BoOk- A fIcTiOn BoOk!”
“ThAt’S tHe WhOlE pOiNt! It’S sUpPoSeD tO bE dEpPrEsSiNg!”

I’m a happy go lucky girl and I demand happy endings!

However, if you’re into the kinda stuff that makes people cry and give up hopes about unicorns and mermaids being real… hey, go you! Read this book and embrace your misery!


Most of this book review was meant to be taken in a light-hearted manner. If you haven’t detected the sarcasm then please be aware that I do have a sarcastic nature that takes on a life of its own. (Although I wasn’t kidding about the book being depressing and about my sympathy and hate for the characters) Hope you enjoyed the review!

What do you think about the book series?


One thought on “Book Review :: The Bad Beginning: Book the First (A Series of Unfortunate Events) by Lemony Snicket

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