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The Beatrice Letters

by Lemony Snicket

Other authors: Brett Helquist (Illustrator)

Series: A Series of Unfortunate Events (supplement)

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1,2392411,044 (3.52)12
Presents a collection of correspondence between the elusive Lemony Snicket and the mysterious Beatrice.
Recently added byprivate library, leoeni, brownefamilynz, Eric_Potter, BowieFamily, LynnK., MilesV
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» See also 12 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
I thought this book provided some interesting insight into both the older generations of characters and into what happened after The End. I have seen some people recommend this book to be read before the end, but I definitely wouldn't recommend that. It is written mysteriously enough that it probably wouldn't give away too much, but I still feel like any amount of spoilers is too many, so I am grateful that I saved it to read after.

This is silly, but I think my favorite thing about this book was that it confirmed in a straightforward way that Sir and Charles were a gay couple. I hadn't even considered that interpretation of their relationship when I was reading the Miserable Mill originally (which would be surprising if you knew me). I think because the book was set at the lumber mill rather than in a homier setting and because Sir acts the way he does, I just automatically assumed when they were described as partners that it meant business partners. It wasn't until the characters showed up together again at the Hotel Denouement that I started to realize that I may have misinterpreted their relationship, and with every new hint that they were romantic partners rather than business ones, I grew more excited. However, the reference to the couple in this book felt the most straightforward out of all of them, and I was happy that it was a definite.

My biggest complaint about this book, and the reason that I only gave it four stars, was the cut-out alphabetical letters placed in between the written letters. I could tell almost immediately upon starting the book that there would be an anagrammed message inside, but the cut-out letters threw me off. In reality, the anagrammed message is made from individual letters hidden throughout the various correspondence in the book. Each cut-out letter is just a copy of whatever letter was hidden clue-like in the accompanying piece of correspondence. However, because I'm too dumb to actually notice that the same letter was being provided in both locations, I thought that I was supposed to anagram the cut-out letters and the hidden clue letters both, meaning that I ended up with twice as many letters as I should have. Frustrated, I failed at doing the anagramming myself (for obvious reasons) and looked it up online to discover my mistake. This annoyed me because I would have felt much more accomplished if I would have had the opportunity to solve the mystery by myself, and because I really didn't see the purpose in including the cut-out letters at all. I think the book would have been much better off if readers had to find the letters hidden in the correspondence without the giant signs telling them what letters to choose (and thoroughly confusing me). ( )
  NovelInsights | Sep 21, 2019 |
As a young man, Lemony Snicket writes a number of love letters to his unrequited love, Beatrice Baudelaire. Another Beatrice Baudelaire altogether writes letters to an older Lemony Snicket, hoping to get help from him in tracking down her lost relatives -- Violet, Sunny, and Klaus Baudelaire.

This book is a supplement to the popular children's book series, A Series of Unfortunate Events. While I quickly read all the books when they came out years ago, for some reason I never got around to this title even though I wanted to read it. When I watched the new Netflix series based on the books recently, I was reminded that I hadn't read this title yet so I checked it out of the library.

The book is quite lovely in creation, with the various letters sent back and forth illustrated to look like small notecards, crumpled up pieces of paper, and so forth. The letters themselves are rather funny in the clever, tongue-in-cheek, and snarky ways you'd expect from Lemony Snicket. There is one rather long passage about how much Snicket loves Beatrice that is a must read. It is beautifully touching with just enough humor and silliness to prevent it from becoming overly sentimental.

I did enjoy this title, but I think reading it closer to the original series would have been smarter. There were definitely some details and nuances that I did not remember well this many years later. So if you and/or your kids are reading and enjoying the Series of Unfortunate Events books, I'd recommend checking out this book soon after as well. ( )
1 vote sweetiegherkin | Feb 26, 2017 |
A quirky supplementary book to the popular Series of Unfortunate Events, this collection of letters is meant to be read before the thirteenth, and last, book in the series. Upon opening the book, one discovers that it is like an accordion file with two pockets. In the first pocket is the book, and in the second is a poster. The book alternates between written letters from two authors and pictures that are small screen shots from the larger poster with a cut-out letter in the middle. Some of the letters have evidence attached, such as photographs or playbills. The letters are written by Lemony Snicket to Beatrice, and by Beatrice to Lemony. It soon becomes apparent that the recipient Beatrice is the one from the forwards to all the books, the lady whom Lemony loves, and the writer Beatrice is an altogether younger girl who is searching for Lemony to help her find her family. Since I read the thirteenth book before I read this collection, I knew the identity of the younger Beatrice, but it would be a nice teaser to readers still waiting to read the finale. The poster, likewise, offers many clues to events that will transpire in the final Baudelaire adventure.

The letters maintain the same delightful dark humor as found in the Series of Unfortunate Events, with forebodings and word play galore. They also divulge quite a bit of information about Lemony Snicket's past, in particular his early relationship with Beatrice, which becomes a doomed and tragic memory later in his life. Furthermore, the package is so unique and original, with hidden codes, letters that are meant to be punched out and arranged in anagrams, and an accompanying poster. I always appreciate book innovations, and this is a lovely presentation with fun hidden information. It is like having embedded easter eggs, but in book form. Certainly fans of the Unfortunate Events series will enjoy this, but the material is so pointed that people unfamiliar with the Baudelaire adventures will be mostly puzzled. ( )
1 vote nmhale | Jul 28, 2016 |
Beautifully done. A little teaser for the final book ( )
  nx74defiant | Jun 4, 2016 |
Very confusing as a book, but the ultimate as a collectable item. ( )
  Glaucialm | Feb 18, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Snicket, Lemonyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Helquist, BrettIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed

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Presents a collection of correspondence between the elusive Lemony Snicket and the mysterious Beatrice.

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