The Bad Beginning
The life of the Baudelaire children goes entirely downhill after their parents were killed in a tragic house fire, leaving behind a vast fortune. The series focuses on the lives of Violet Baudelaire, a fourteen-year-old inventor, Klaus Baudelaire, a 12-year-old literature enthusiast with a photographic memory, and Sunny Baudelaire, 2-year-old with joy for biting things. In the Bad Beginning, these gifted children are sent to live with a distant relative who goes by the name of Count Olaf, a man with distinctive physical characteristics such a slender body, and his notorious eye tattoo on his ankle. Count Olaf, later seen as the antagonist of the series, gives his best attempt to steal their fortune; his efforts include framing others, lying, and even trying to murder the children. As the title states, the unlucky children face a series of moments which can be summed up with despair, pain and agony. The Baudelaire children come together and work as a family to escape from Count Olaf, protecting their parent’s fortune, and learn the truth about trusting others.
This book along with the remaining books of the series allows readers to follow and grow with the characters and potentially relate with certain individuals that shape the plot of the book. Fans of the mystery genre will definitely adore this novel, and will continuously wonder how the story will unfold next. This book teaches and encourages readers to utilize their skills to the fullest, to believe in their abilities, and work as a family to overcome any obstacle, no matter how severe the issue. The story is well-written, suspenseful and I definitely recommend this novel to readers above grade 7. – Eesa K.