In Review: May

Books

A Series of Unfortunate Events
Lemony Snicket | HarperCollins (1999-2006)
A-

Lemony Snicket’s uniquely quirky writing sets this series apart from most others.  Though its first half gets somewhat repetitive, the books’ short length and Snicket’s prose make the escalation of the plot from Book 8 onwards worth waiting for.  It even ventures to ask some Big Questions as the Baudelaire Orphans’ situation grows more desperate, such as the problem of ends justifying means, and it gradually becomes clear that the main antagonist’s motives are less cut-and-dried nefarious than was first imagined.  It definitely leaves one wanting to know more, about V.F.D., the Sugar Bowl, Beatrice, about everything.  Whether Snicket will provide any answers in the future remains to be seen…

Worth reading; Snicket writes like no one else, despite these books’ young target audience. Somewhere in between 3.5 and 4 stars out of 5.
stars35

Music

The Suburbsexcellence-music
Arcade Fire | Merge (2010)
A

The Suburbs does a very good job of capturing a complex emotion: that inexpressible nostalgia of growing up, of feeling restless to explore the world, yet longing for the simplicity of one’s childhood.  Perhaps its success in this is what led it (quite unexpectedly) to win Best Album at the Grammy’s in 2011.  Its 16 tracks carry this theme without growing dull for over an hour, stumbling but once or twice.  It may not be as incandescent as Arcade Fire’s debut, but it is an exceptionally paced record that rewards repeat listens.

The Canadians have done it again.  4 stars out of 5.
stars4

Advertisements

One Is Not Enough

“If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats.”

– Lemony Snicket

Besides being a good author, Lemony Snicket always has such quirky and truthful quotes.  I don’t think I can help myself from leaving you with multiple quotes this week, all from Lemony Snicket, refreshing and punctuated with relatable and apposite analogies.

Enjoy.

“Never trust anyone who has not brought a book with them.”

“People aren’t either wicked or noble. They’re like chef’s salads, with good things and bad things chopped and mixed together in a vinaigrette of confusion and conflict.”

“It is a curious thing, the death of a loved one. We all know that our time in this world is limited, and that eventually all of us will end up underneath some sheet, never to wake up. And yet it is always a surprise when it happens to someone we know. It is like walking up the stairs to your bedroom in the dark, and thinking there is one more stair than there is. Your foot falls down, through the air, and there is a sickly moment of dark surprise as you try and readjust the way you thought of things.”

“It is one of life’s bitterest truths that bedtime so often arrives just when things are really getting interesting.”

“Miracles are like meatballs, because nobody can exactly agree on what they are made of, where they come from, or how often they should appear.”

“It is likely I will die next to a pile of things I was meaning to read.”

“Strange as it may seem, I still hope for the best, even though the best, like an interesting piece of mail, so rarely arrives, and even when it does it can be lost so easily.”

Happy Sunday.