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Lemony Snicket - Who Could That Be At This Hour?

There were actual celebrations in our house when we got our copy of Who Could That Be at This Hour? the first in Lemony Snicket’s new series All the Wrong Questions. I have been a huge fan of Snicket since the publication of A Series of Unfortunate Events and was thrilled when I heard that he was returning to tales of his mysterious childhood in a shady organisation. Where the Unfortunate Events series had a gothic Edward Gorey-esque feel to them, the new book is more like a noir, starting with the wonderful sentence “There was a town, and there was a girl, and there was a theft”. The change of illustrator from Brett Helquist to Canadian artist Seth supports this with shady figures and shadowy locations. The book follows twelve year old Lemony Snicket’s induction into a mysterious and unnamed organisation, mentored by the useless S. Theodora Markson. Along the way he travels to a town populated by more useless adults and clever children with classic Snicket names like Moxie Mallahan, Ellington Feint and Dashiell Qwerty. While there he attempts to solve the mysterious theft of the Bombinating Beast (a Maltese falcon for our time!). As with all of Snicket’s work there is lots of wordplay, literary references and hilarious asides. It is a brilliant start to the new series and I can’t wait to read the next volume in October.


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