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The End (2006)

by Lemony Snicket

Other authors: Brett Helquist (Illustrator), Michael Kupperman (Illustrator)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: A Series of Unfortunate Events (13)

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6,762117984 (3.87)66
Lost at sea, the Baudelaire orphans, along with the evil Count Olaf, wash up on the shore of an island populated by an oddly placid group of inhabitants, and they try to decide whether or not they are truly safe.



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» See also 66 mentions

English (114)  German (1)  All languages (115)
Showing 1-5 of 114 (next | show all)
It seems that I have mix feels about the end of The End. A lot of questions have been answers and not answer at the same time. Has to read between the lines to know all the secrets. There more to the story then the ending is telling.
I only have one question that a bit confusing and, still somehow have an answer that might be true, all the other questions somehow add up (not all the way).

Q: Are their parents alive or dead?

A: They most likely to be alive and are somewhere in the world.

Also, what is this sugar bowl or what in it? I think Captain Widdershins or Kit Snicket say that what in it supposed to bring peace between the staism of V.F.D.
I not going to let the little things get in the way. This will be one of my favorite series and I'm glad that I finish this. Not all the knots were tie up, but I'm finally done with it. However, I might have to read this again in the future and also the new series ATWQ might answer the right questions in SOUE. ( )
  AnnaBookcritter | Sep 15, 2020 |
A book series I never read when I was the right age, I decided to read it now after watching the first two seasons of the Netflix adaptation. Overall I enjoyed them, even if they were somewhat repetitive and lacking in a clear direction. (I'll hide plot spoilers, but not thematic ones. Read at your own peril.)

First, the good. Lemony Snicket as narrator makes the first three or four books—repetitive and, frankly, a bit of a slough—bearable. His voice is fresh, wry, self-aware, and full of literary and cultural allusions. Setting aside the mysteries and conspiracies surrounding the plot, there are enough layers to his narration to keep the reader intrigued. I especially enjoyed the references in Sunny's baby talk and to Snicket's many "associates."

I generally like where the story lands in terms of a "message"—that the world can be a grim place, that its people are mixes of noble and treacherous, and that sometimes the best you can do is strive to be noble enough. While that does leave me somewhat deflated—is that really the best we can do?—it probably is a realistic expectation, taking into account both the possibility for being noble and the inevitability of sometimes being treacherous, despite one's best efforts. Then again, I'm no ethicist. (I should also note it takes awhile to come round to this theme—the first several books are more focused on the general misery of the Baudelaires' lives, and perhaps life more broadly; the mysteries and conspiracies surround V.F.D. consume the middle third; and finally, in the last few books, we finally settle on this theme. This accounts for some of the lack of direction I felt throughout the series as a whole.)

And I also—sort of—don't mind that many questions are left unanswered. What did the sugar bowl contain? What role did the Baudelaires' parents play in the death of Count Olaf's family? Why couldn't Beatrice Baudelaire marry Lemony Snicket? Did the Quagmires survive? Do the Baudelaires survive? These and more are left unresolved. It would be impossible to tell the entire story, for every story is nested in and dependent upon another one. [b:The Bad Beginning|78411|The Bad Beginning (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #1)|Lemony Snicket|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1490085391s/78411.jpg|1069597] wasn't really the beginning; The End isn't really the end. As such, no mystery could ever be answered to the readers' (or the Baudelaires') satisfaction—there's always more to the story, and so there's always more to the mystery. What matters, in any case, is the Baudelaires, like all children, have grown up, and learnt something of the world: that it's generally an unpleasant place, but that's no reason not to strive to be sufficiently noble. The mysteries, then, and their answers don't really matter after all.

Or so Snicket would have us think, anyway. And I'm inclined to allow him that—it's his story, and he can tell it as he likes. (Indeed, that's what made much of the series so interesting to me.) However, I can't shake a bit of disappointment in this handling of the mysteries. He spends so much of the series making much of the secrets, the mysteries, the conspiracies, only to reach the end and say, Well, it doesn't really matter in the end, does it? No, I suppose it doesn't. Still, it would have been nice to know.

So, what do I think? It has some noble parts—the clever narration, the touching movements of sibling love, even the near-redemption of the villainous Count Olaf. (Or is he fully redeemed? I'm not sure. Yet there is some treachery herein, too—the unanswered questions, mainly. I suppose, all in all, it's noble enough. ( )
  drewbelf | Jun 28, 2020 |
This doesn't even deserve a review.

A fucking disaster of a series. ( )
  a-shelf-apart | Nov 19, 2019 |
Well that was unexpected. ( )
  Shahnareads | Oct 22, 2019 |
Though I haven't been reviewing each individual book in the series, I just had to write up my thoughts on this one (spoilers ahead!)

Though it definitely still left a lot of questions unanswered, this felt like a fitting ending to the series and was my favorite of all 13 books. The entire concept of the island community was intriguing, and it was such a relief that a group of people finally saw through Count Olaf. Perhaps the best part about all this, however, was the Biblical allusion and what it really said about religion. The story of Adam and Eve is typically one that people like to reference in their work, but this is the first time I can remember seeing it portrayed in the same way that I personally feel about it: that knowledge and thinking for yourself is the right choice, and that blindly following the restrictions of your leader (god/church/whatever) just because they claim to know what's best will likely not provide you with what's best for you at all. The sheep were a nice touch, too.

Also, learning the identity of the Baudelaire's mother after all this time still managed to catch me by surprise. I don't remember this ending to the series at all from my childhood, so either it was very well forgotten or I never got around to reading the last book or two of the series before. Anyhow, as I was going about my reread, I had been hypothesizing that she was somehow related to the Snickets by blood. In fact, up until Kit Snicket turned up in the Penultimate Peril, I had assumed that she was Lemony's sister. The photograph of the Baudelaire parents with Jacques and Lemony first sparked that idea for me, because there wasn't a sister in it, though I knew from various references throughout the narration that Lemony had one. Since women typically change their last names in marriage, as she did, I figured Snicket could have easily been her last name. This assumption was further supported later when Lemony mentioned in the narration that his sister liked to prepare salads a certain way--the same way that the Baudelaire's mother also prepared salads. Even after Kit's identity was revealed, I was waiting for some trick, be it a second sister or a lie on Kit's part. Anyhow, throughout the entire series, the indications that Mrs. Baudelaire was Lemony's sister kept me completely off track, and I never once considered that she could be who she really was, though the answer was quite literally in front of my face the entire time. This was also disappointing because there had been several indications throughout the book that Lemony's sister was still alive, which led me to believe that the Baudelaire mother was alive, too. I held out hope, even after it was mentioned that Quigley was probably the fire survivor mentioned in the clipping from the Snicket file, but of course, that was futile. This development was also interesting for another reason, however; after reading what happened to Kit at the end of this book, it made me realize that, if Lemony had really been interacting with his sister throughout the writing of the stories, that meant that he was actively researching the Baudelaires and following their movements while the story was still unfolding. I suppose this makes sense, as his dedication to their mother would logically lead him to want to find them and probably care for them, but I had always been under the impression that he was researching them after their story had finished unfolding.

Anyhow, as I mentioned earlier, there were some loose ends left behind. The most disappointing one for me is that we never learn the significance of the sugar bowl, though I kind of got the general feeling that it might have something to do with horseradish or the hybrid apples from the island. The other big mystery, in my opinion, is what happened to the Quagmires and what the great unknown sea creature was. I really liked the Quagmires a lot, so it would be nice to think that it did in some way rescue them, but it feels much more likely that it was simply some giant sea monster that ate them. I plan to read the Unauthorized Autobiography tomorrow, and I hope that it unravels some of the other mysteries that were alluded to, such as the story of the poison darts and, ideally, also the sugar bowl, but I know that the Quagmires are likely too tangential to the story to appear, and of course, if they actually have been eaten by a sea monster, no one would ever find out for sure what happened to them.

One way or the other, I would like to read more from Daniel Handler. There's so much intelligence in the writing of these children's books that I'm very interested to see what else he has written, especially for adult audiences. I hope he puts as much thought and hidden meaning into his other projects, as well.

( )
1 vote NovelInsights | Sep 21, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 114 (next | show all)
A happy ending for the Bauldelaire orphans in my opinion. Though, i'd like to hear more about their exploits.I just finished today, i'm going to give my thanks to Daniel Handler(Lemony Snicket) for giving me something to be hooked on for the past few weeks, and the thing i was hooked on was the series of unfortunate events books. I look forward to the next four books he will be making on something else and maybe some more series of unfortunate events. All the series of unfortunate events fans, keep your eyes peeled for the new books in 2012!
added by Xianelle | editpersonal, Xianelle San Juan (Dec 19, 2011)

» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Snicket, Lemonyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Helquist, BrettIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kupperman, MichaelIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Curry, TimNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Ô Mort, vieux capitaine, il est temps ! levons l'ancre !
Ce pays nous ennuie, ô Mort ! Appareillons !
Si le ciel et la mer sont noirs comme de l'encre,
Nos coeurs que tu connais sont remplis de rayons !
For Beatrice -- I cherished, you perished. The world's been nightmarished
For Beatrice -- We are like boats passing in the night -- particularly you.
First words
If you have every peeled an onion, then you know that the first thin, papery layer reveals another thin, papery layer, and that layer reveals another, and another, and before you know it you have hundreds of layers all over the kitchen table and thousands of tears in your eyes, sorry that you ever started peeling in the first place and wishing that you had left the onion alone to wither away on the shelf of the pantry while you went on with your life, even if that meant never again enjoying the complicated and overwhelming taste of this strange and bitter vegetable.
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Lost at sea, the Baudelaire orphans, along with the evil Count Olaf, wash up on the shore of an island populated by an oddly placid group of inhabitants, and they try to decide whether or not they are truly safe.

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