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Tuesday, February 28, 2017

The Austere Academy by Lemony Snicket

Genre: Children's Literature

Setting: At a fictitious boarding school

First Sentence:  If you were going to give a gold medal to the least delightful person on Earth, you would have to give that medal to a person maned Carmelita Spats, and if you didn't give it to her. Carmela Spats was the sort of person who would snatch it from you anyway.

This novel is the fifth book in the author's thirteen book series entitled " A Series of Unfortunate Events."

This episode relates the experiences that the three Baudelaire orphans have at the Prufrock Preparatory School.  This boarding school is the next horrible place that Mr. Poe has chosen to leave the orphans.  Mr. Poe is the banker entrusted with caring for the orphans and their fortune.  It seems that he is more concerned with the fortune than the children.

Of course, any school that Mr. Poe would select would be horrible.  Prufrock Prep has boring teachers, awful lessons, a vindictive Vice Principal, and a very suspicious gym teacher.

Fortunately, Prufrock Prep has two good things: the Quagmire Triplets.  the Baudelaires and the Quagmires soon become fast friends.  Both sets of children have something in common.  They both have lost their parents due to a fire.  And they both are the heirs to a fortune.

It doesn't take long for Count Olaf, in disguise, to make his appearance.  When the Quagmires decide to help the Baudelaires, they place themselves in danger.

This episode gives us (you and I) some tantalizing clues to the larger mystery of the series.

Who is Count Olaf really?

Why is he so interested in the Baudelaire fortune?

The clues hinted at in this novel suggest that there is something interesting and mysterious going on.


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