A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snickett
As read by Tim Curry
The Skinny: After the sudden death of their parents in a mysterious fire, the Baudelaire children, now the Baudelaire orphans, are sent to live with their very distant relative Count Olaf. They are treated cruelly by their new guardian, given many difficult chores and only one bed between the three of them, and they search for a way to escape. They soon discover a sinister plot devised by Count Olaf to steal their fortune, which is untouchable until Violet (the eldest) comes of age. The Baudelaires try to reveal Count Olaf’s plan and save themselves before it’s too late but, as many can tell you, who really listens to children?
BFF?: Okay, although I’m nearly 30, I want to be one of the Baudelaires SO badly! These kids know what’s up and are smart, savvy and witty. If I can’t be a Baudelaire, I certainly want to be BFFs with them. As I was listening to this tape I kept wanting to interject, which in this case means “to interrupt with my own great idea.” I think we would be a great team of friends as we battled the dastardly Count Olaf.
Listen-ability: Who DOESN’T like Tim Curry? When I found out he narrated this I nearly squealed for joy. Because besides Jim Carey (who will always be the Count to me) who else but Tim Curry could bring the sinister creepiness of this book to life? But, to my honest surprise, it wasn’t Tim Curry who brought the book to life. No, he just read the part of the narrator. Y’all, the whole thing was acted out! Each character had their own voice, which made it even exciting. There was sound effects and creepy music; in fact, there were a few times when I got a little spooked out and jumped in my seat! This one deserves a listen.
Crush Level: 1
If Klaus were about 5 or 6 years older, I could imagine him being a viable crush-worthy YA character. Right now, at 12, he’s just a kid, but he’s smart… and he READS! So while I wouldn’t say I have a “crush” on him, give him a few years and we’ll check back with him.
I feel like nowadays there aren’t many books written about “smart” kids – as in kids that study and read and don’t watch TV and play video games. The Baudelaire children are smart – Violet, the inventor; Klaus, the reader; even Sunny being a biter was pretty smart.
If Tim Curry is in it, I’m sure I’ll love it. There’s just something fantastic about him that makes you get the shivers and your skin crawl while at the same time being floored at how great of an actor he is. I can’t imagine a better narrator for this book than he was.
Commencement Speech: I have this mad obsession with the Series of Unfortunate Events movie. I know it’s more for kids, but it’s one of my comfort movies that I’ll watch on a bad day or a boring, rainy afternoon. I’ve read the Bad Beginning but that’s the only one I’ve managed to make it through (although I really did love it and want to read the rest of this series). I wasn’t expecting a whole lot from this one but seriously was blown away by how wonderful it was! My only complaint was that it was pretty short – only 3 CDs that were less than an hour each – so it was over too quickly and I didn’t have the second one to pop in ASAP! Didn’t help that there was a teaser from the 2nd book in the series either… Do yourself a favor and listen to this series. Tell me what you think when you do!
Superlatives – Most Awesome Narrator in the World!