Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Review: The Miserable Mill by Lemony Snicket

Title: The Miserable Mill
Series: A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 4
Author: Lemony Snicket
Publisher: HarperCollins
Length: 195 pages
Publication Date: April 15, 2000
Reviewed Format: Hardcover, Paperback, Kindle Edition, eBook, Audiobook.
Source: Xmas Gift from my parents
My Rating: ★★★★☆
Get it @: Amazon | Book Depository

Book Description:

Dear Reader,

I hope for your sake, that you have not chosen to read this book because you are in the mood for a pleasant experience. If this is the case, I advise you to put this book down instantaneously, because of all the books describing the unhappy lives of the Baudelaire orphans, The Miserable Mill might be the unhappiest yet. Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudeliare are sent to Paltryville to work in a lumbermill, and they find disaster and misfortune luring behing every log.

The pages of this book, I'm sorry to inform you, contain such unpeasantries as a giant pincher machine, a bad casserole, a man with a cloud of smoke where his head should be, a hypnotist, a terrible accident resulting in injury, and coupons.

I have promised to write down the entire history of these three poor children, buy you haven't, so if you prefer stories that are more heartwarming, please feel free to make another selection.

With all due respect,
Lemony Snicket

After the disastrous events that occurred by Lake Lachrymose the children are taken by train to a town named Paltryville where they will meet the man that is to become their new caretaker. Once the children start to live in the Lucky Smells Lumbermill they are quick to realize that there is no way things could possibly get brighter. But they also don’t really know how it could ever get much worse than how it already was. Not only do they have to live with all of the workers at the lumbermill without any possibility of fun at all. Working at the Lucky Smells Lumbermill is much more horrible than it sounds. The children are not only forced to work, but also to do it without breakfast; only a five minute break for lunch and only a light stew for dinner. With this little nutrition they have to get up early to strip bark, branches, etc. and in general prepare the logs that will be cut into boards and planks and what not. Not only do they barely eat but they also don’t get paid at all! Horrible conditions I say HORRIBLE!!! The whole story in general is sad, gloomy and depressing.

Violet, Klaus and Sunny Baudelaire are, in fact, the main characters of this story. Most everywhere they go they seem to be surrounded by tragedy, sadness and death. Violet is a very imaginative inventor and the eldest of the Baudelaire orphans. Sunny is the youngest of the siblings, she is very small and smart, loves to bite things and doesn’t hesitate to help her brother and sister when they need her. Last but not least is the middle child Klaus, he is a voracious reader and the only boy in the trio. He loves to read just about everything and doesn’t seem to mind what it might it about. Mr. Poe is a banker and was a very close friend of the Baudelaire children’s parents. He is in charge of the Baudelaire’s Will and money but also that the children are placed to live in ‘safe’ houses until Violet reaches the age in which she can access their parent’s money. Sir is the man who adopts the children for the time being. He is a very horrible and greedy man who overworks his employees and doesn’t pay them fairly. He is called Sir all through the novel due to the fact that nobody can pronounce his name. Charles is Sir’s partner and doesn’t seem to be greedy at all. He is very nice and kind although powerless when it comes to dealing with Sir even though they are supposed to be equals. Foreman Flacutono works at the Lucky Smells Lumbermills as a, well, foreman (a person who supervises and directs other workers). He is a horrible, scary disgusting and cruel man who bosses the other workers around in a slave like manner. And last but not least is Count Olaf who in this book is called Shirley. Shirley works as a receptionist for an eye doctor. Apparently adults are very easy to fool, especially when the one who is fooling them is dressed in clothes of the opposite sex. I have nothing much to say about Count Olaf except that he is still the same filthy, rotten, revolting, horrible, cruel and greedy man that he has been all through the story.

The book in general was great, although I did find the story to be kind of slow. Very dark, yes, but it was still amazing. I felt like I was right there with the Baudelaire’s sharing in their tragedy. I have a feeling that the stories will only keep getting darker from here on. The only thing that I dislike so far is the continued way in which the adults underestimate the children just because they are young, I mean just ‘cause they are young and orphaned doesn’t mean that they are dumb and stupid slow-witted kids! That is seriously driving me crazy. But, that aside, I loved the story.

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