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The Bad Beginning: A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 1 | [Lemony Snicket]

The Bad Beginning: A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 1

I am sorry to tell you that this audiobook is extremely unpleasant. It tells an unhappy tale about three unlucky children. Even though they are charming and clever, the Baudelaire siblings lead lives filled with misery and woe. One might say that they are magnets for misfortune. On this recording alone, the three youngsters encounter a greedy and repulsive villain, itchy clothing, a disastrous fire, a plot to steal their fortune, and cold porridge for breakfast.
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Publisher's Summary

Dear Customer,

I am sorry to tell you that this audiobook is extremely unpleasant. It tells an unhappy tale about three unlucky children. Even though they are charming and clever, the Baudelaire siblings lead lives filled with misery and woe. One might say that they are magnets for misfortune. On this recording alone, the three youngsters encounter a greedy and repulsive villain, itchy clothing, a disastrous fire, a plot to steal their fortune, and cold porridge for breakfast.

It is my sad duty to record these unpleasant tales, but there is nothing stopping you from ignoring this audio completely and choosing something happy instead, if you prefer that sort of thing.

With all due respect,
Lemony Snicket

What will happen next to the Baudelaire orphans? Find out in the rest of A Series of Unfortunate Events.

©1999 Lemony Snicket; (P)2002 HarperCollins US

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (92 )
5 star
 (48)
4 star
 (26)
3 star
 (11)
2 star
 (3)
1 star
 (4)
Overall
4.4 (30 )
5 star
 (17)
4 star
 (10)
3 star
 (2)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (1)
Story
4.4 (30 )
5 star
 (19)
4 star
 (7)
3 star
 (3)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (1)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Amazon Customer 23/12/2012 Listener Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
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    0
    0
    Overall
    "Great for car journeys"

    Our 7 year old boy has read and listened to all the How to train your dragon series (narrated by the brilliant David Tennant) and we've been looking for something equally engaging. These books are great fun and we've been listening to the audiobook in the car. Our son thinks the stories are really lively and exciting plus the way new words are explained is really effective and never patronising. We'd recommend these to anyone that wants something that stimulates the imagination without being too scary - and long journeys whizz by. Our 5 year enjoys them but needs a little explanation to understand what's going on.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 26/04/2007 Member Since 2015

    i did

    HELPFUL VOTES
    242
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    102
    54
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    0
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    Overall
    "Another happy adult listener"

    I really enjoyed listening to this wonderfully dark little story. I would recommend it to any adult who grew up with the Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy books as the authour employs similair tricks to play with your expectations of the story and get unexpected laughs.
    But I hereby deduct one star for Tim Curry's coughing which really grated on me by the end!
    Parents: if your child doesn't enjoy this book it may be a warning sigh that they need to spend less time running around outside and more time sat indoors reading. Please take immediate action!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Danuta Shell CoveAustralia 14/07/2010
    Danuta Shell CoveAustralia 14/07/2010 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    203
    17
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    FOLLOWING
    0
    2
    Overall
    "For younger readers"

    While I enjoyed the audio book the story did not captivate me: I put it down to being 'too old'. I'm sure that it will appeal to younger readers as Steve Curry has read it very well and brings the characters to life, in particular the evil Count Olaf. As another reviewer stated he overdid the coughing which becomes very annoying towards the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tao Wilkins 22/08/2015
    Tao Wilkins 22/08/2015 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Lived up to the books incredibly "

    Although a glum tale 'A Series Of Unfortunate Events' is a fantastic set of books for anyone wanting to be immersed into a rich world of imagination.
    As someone who has read the seires traditionally (with an ingrained narrator from my own head) I though it almost impossible for someone else to do it justice but Tim Curry does the job so well I can't pull the words from head! The story is 10/10 no doubt but the performance 11.
    Great both for younger children yet to be introduced to Handler's (Snickets) macabre world and for the older generation (like myself) wanting to rediscover the magic with a slightly different take, by which I mean read by a fresh voice.
    Would most definitely recommend!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charlotte 18/08/2015
    Charlotte 18/08/2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "amazing and scary"

    Very colourful and lively narration. Exciting story with twists and turns and wonderfully bad baddies. We are excited to listen to more of this series...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sakura 30/11/2014
    Sakura 30/11/2014 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The film missed a lot out!"
    Where does The Bad Beginning rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It rates pretty high, compared to the other child/teen books I've downloaded.


    What other book might you compare The Bad Beginning to, and why?

    I don't think I can compare it, it's too different.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    I liked the parts where the children got to spend time with Justice Strauss in her library.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    Be wary, although the film was a bit dark for a childrens film, it left a lot more out than I expected. The books are a lot darker, and inn this one there is some....implied danger to Violet on account of her being 'pretty', from some of the male characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. Crawford Maidstone, UK 18/03/2014
    A. Crawford Maidstone, UK 18/03/2014 Member Since 2012

    Anne

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    "A horribly good story"

    Bought for my 9-yr old but I listened to it too! Obviously written for children, but tolerable for adults. My daughter rated it 5/5.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer London United Kingdom 08/10/2012
    Amazon Customer London United Kingdom 08/10/2012 Member Since 2011
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    1
    Overall
    "My kids loved it"

    My kids absolutely loved this audiobook, it did a great job on a long car journey and they instantly wanted the second book in the series.



    Excellent narration from Tim Curry, pitch perfect for the text.



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Diane WAAustralia 10/08/2007
    Diane WAAustralia 10/08/2007 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
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    120
    4
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    0
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    Overall
    "Black Humour for Big Kids"

    From the dire warnings at the start of this story to the twisted and unhappily-ever-after promise at the end, Lemony Snicket enchanted me. His Roald Dahlesque revolting baddies were delicious, his grown up goodies artfully naive or inept, whilst the 'poor orphans' deal with each successive blow with a matter of fact bite, invention or book.
    The humour is wry and the way he plays with words and their meanings remind me of those treasured books from my childhood. From the biting baby with an aptitude for an artfully placed 'goo'or 'gah' to the well-meaning but useless Mr Poe with his ever present cough, this masterfully read book is likely to hook you in and leave you wanting more.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jackie 07/04/2007
    Jackie 07/04/2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    56
    ratings
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    29
    22
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    "The Bad Beginning (unabridged)"

    Here I am another adult listening to the children's audiobook and enjoying every moment. The plot is brilliant and the sense of humour very dry and witty that you can't help but smile, laugh and chuckle all at the same time. I have now queued all 12 or so books for 'my next listen' and looking forward to the next one with eager anticipation.
    Signed over forties trendy mother!!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • michelle
    Coolum Beach, Australia
    02/10/09
    Overall
    "A great beginning"

    I think this was a great introduction to this book series. I love Tim Curry's voice - who wouldn't want to listen to it? The story was a little dark for my daughters liking ( but I liked that aspect of it).

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Sean
    Gorey, Ireland
    12/03/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not for younger children"
    What did you like best about The Bad Beginning? What did you like least?

    I bought this to use with 7-8 year olds but they didnt buy into it somehow. Probaly over their heads so be advised probly suits an older age group


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Joanna
    20/02/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not a huge fan of the performance"

    I've read these books before, adore the story but I wasn't fond of the voice actor's rendition of Count Olaf. Short but great story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Nyree
    PERTH, Australia
    17/09/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Shame about the production clarity"
    If you could sum up The Bad Beginning in three words, what would they be?

    I couldn't. Its a great book and I love an author that doesn't dumb things down for the kids who will be reading (or listening to) it.


    Which character – as performed by Tim Curry – was your favorite?

    He didn't really do voices as such - tones and inflections changed for each character but you can't change Tim Curry's voice.


    Any additional comments?

    The productions values let this down. There is a fuzziness to it that does a great injustice to both the book (which is a favourite) and to Tim Curry's narration. There is a is hissing in the background which gets on your nerves after a while - thus explaining my odd ratings. The kids loved it though they too complained about the background noise.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jean
    Chilliwack, BC, Canada
    13/01/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Delightful!"

    I love this series and Tim Curry does an excellent job of narrating!! Well done!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • lee
    Seoul, Korea (South)
    01/03/11
    Overall
    "narrater's voice is good"

    this book is my first audio book. firstly, i worried about buying the book, but the narrater's voice helped me to easliy listen to the story,

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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