Friday, January 28, 2005

Lemony Snicket

I've listened to 2.9 Lemony Snicket books on tape now, on the way to and from work (The Bad Beginning, The Wide Window, and The Carnivorous Carnival). They are definitely engaging, but I can't decide if I really like them or not. I'm not sure if they're really appropriate for young kids. I guess they're not necessarily bad books, but there are many better things you could be reading. I guess if I want my children to read good literature, I should follow my own advice and pick up something better.

In Book the First, The Bad Beginning, the childrens' parents are killed in a fire. I don't think I'd be too comforted to read about this if I were a child. As a child I was always terrified that my parents were going to die. I don't think I would've appreciated a book where that very thing happens. Also in Book the First, Count Olaf, the Baudelaire orphans' distant relative, tries to marry Violet, the oldest Baudelaire child (14 years old), so he can control their fortune. Gross! He even makes several comments about how beautiful she is and how he looks forward to marrying her. Grosser! In Book the Ninth (or Eleventh?), The Carnivorous Carnival, two people fall into a pit of lions. The book doesn't describe exactly how they get eaten, but the thought is still gross. In fact, the book never comes out and says the two actually got killed and eaten. It implies it heavily, but it hasn't come out and said it yet.

I have learned many words, phrases, and idiomatic expressions from these books. That's one good thing about them. The first one I listened to was read by Tim Curry. It was an excellent performance. Not a reading, but a performance. I enjoyed it very much. The next one was read by the author, Lemony Snicket, himself. I was very excited to listen to a reading by the author - I would be able to hear the way he intended things to sound. It was awful compared to Tim Curry's performance. Lemony Snicket didn't do any special voices for the different characters, and I'm sorry to say this, because it's very politically incorrect, but his speech impediment makes him sound gay. I would much rather listen to Tim Curry's performances any time.

Other books on tape I've listened to recently include:
The Messenger, by Lois Lowry
Where the Red Fern Grows, by Winston Rawls
Last of the Mohicans, by James Fenimore Cooper
part of The Wizard of Oz, by L. Frank Baum
others that I can't remember right this second :-D

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