The Slippery Slope: Book the Tenth (A Series of Unfortunate Events)

( 528 )

Overview

Like bad smells, uninvited weekend guests or very old eggs, there are some things that ought to be avoided.

Snicket's saga about the charming, intelligent, and grossly unlucky Baudelaire orphans continues to alarm its distressed and suspicious fans the world over. The 10th book in this outrageous publishing effort features more than the usual dose of distressing details, such as snow gnats, an organised troupe of youngsters, an evil villain with a dastardly plan, a secret ...

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A Series of Unfortunate Events #10: The Slippery Slope

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Overview

Like bad smells, uninvited weekend guests or very old eggs, there are some things that ought to be avoided.

Snicket's saga about the charming, intelligent, and grossly unlucky Baudelaire orphans continues to alarm its distressed and suspicious fans the world over. The 10th book in this outrageous publishing effort features more than the usual dose of distressing details, such as snow gnats, an organised troupe of youngsters, an evil villain with a dastardly plan, a secret headquarters and some dangerous antics you should not try at home. With the weather turning colder, this is one chilling book you would be better off without.

Ages 10+

In the perilous Mortmain Mountains, Klaus and Violet Baudelaire meet another well-read person, who helps them try to rescue Sunny from the villainous Count Olaf and his henchmen as they all near "the last safe place."

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Lemony Snicket lovers, it's unfortunate, but it's true: Book the Tenth is here, and it's as chillingly cheerless as ever! Picking up where Book the Ninth left off, Violet and Klaus are stuck in the rolling caravan and are desperate to rescue their sister, Sunny. Thankfully, they roll to safety by the skin of their sad teeth, but little do they realize that their trek into the Mortmain Mountains will bring them face to face with a horde of stinging snow gnats, a group of bizarre snow scouts, and eventually Count Olaf himself. But Snicket's installment isn't as hopeless as it may sound -- there are many juicy hints inside as to the mystery of V.F.D., the fate of the Baudelaire parents, and even how Snicket himself fits into the whole series. The slippery author's tenth entry includes surprises at every turn -- particularly when a long-forgotten character turns up -- and fans will be aching to find out what happens next in this alpine-themed cliff-hanger that's an important piece of Snicket's puzzle.
Publishers Weekly
Stand back, Snicket fans, the latest Unfortunate Events are about to unfold in The Slippery Slope by Lemony Snicket, illus. by Brett Helquist. Violet and Klaus Baudelaire must climb the titular terrain as they search for their sister Sunny in the Mortmain Mountains, after she is kidnapped by-who else-the diabolical Count Olaf. Will they reunite? Will they find their way out? Read on and find out.... Also being released this month, a slip-covered edition of the launch title, The Bad Beginning: Rare Edition, along with a stand-up portrait of the calamitous cast. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
The tenth of the popular "A Series of Unfortunate Events" books, this novel follows the three Baudelaire orphans as they clash with Count Olaf and seek news of a missing parent. The melodramatic editorializing on the part of the narrator that has characterized the Lemony Snicket books is by no means absent here: fans will relish the adept word-play that accompanies accounts of Sunny's kidnapping, Violet and Klaus' rescue attempts, and Count Olaf's gang of eccentric villains. This novel also shows some additional development of the characters of Sunny and Violet Baudelaire. Sunny, once separated from her siblings, must think and act for herself, giving the reader a new sense of the personality behind this youngest Baudelaire child. Violet, on the other hand, meets Quigley Quagmire, the presumed-dead brother of their friends, Isadora and Duncan Quagmire, and readers observe the start of a special, more adult friendship between the two of them. And through it all, the author has woven the well-chosen words and whimsical pronouncements that make these books intellectually satisfying as well as just plain funny. For more advanced young readers, this book, like the previous Lemony Snicket books, should prove an entertaining and challenging read. In addition, the comic descriptions and clever dialogue may be the incentive required to get less advanced readers to forge ahead. 2003, HarperCollins, Ages 8 to 11.
—Julie Govan
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-The Baudelaire children are back for another harrowing adventure in the quest to find their parents and foil Count Olaf's evil plans. When the villain kidnaps Sunny and takes her to the Mortmain Mountains, Violet and Klaus race against time to save her and find the "last safe place." This fast-paced continuation of the series finds the well-developed characters working with another friend to help solve the mysteries of the slippery slope. The dark humor and cliff-hanger ending will keep fans eagerly awaiting the next installment. Black-and-white sketches throughout the text enhance the story.-Krista Tokarz, Cuyahoga County Public Library, OH Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780064410137
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/23/2003
  • Series: A Series of Unfortunate Events , #10
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 57,214
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 1150L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.00 (h) x 1.22 (d)

Meet the Author

Lemony Snicket

Lemony Snicket is often despondent, mostly about his published research, which includes A Series of Unfortunate Events and The Composer Is Dead.

Brett Helquist's celebrated art has graced books from the charming Roger, The Jolly Pirate, to the alarming New York Times bestselling A Series of Unfortunate Events, to the cozy E. B. White Read-Aloud Award finalist bedtime for bear. He lives with his family in Brooklyn, New York.

Michael Kupperman has done many illustrations for such publications as Fortune, The New Yorker, and The New York Times. He frequently writes scripts for DC Comics. This is his first book.

Biography

As the saying goes, all good things must come to an end -- and, in the case of Lemony Snicket, all unfortunate things must come to an end, too. After seven years and thirteen episodes, the much beloved A Series of Unfortunate Events books are drawing to a close. At least, that's what Snicket's "handler" Daniel Handler says.

But before getting to what promises to be "the most unfortunate event of all," it is first necessary to familiarize oneself with the mysterious man who created a mega-selling series of children's novels pivoting on the premise of placing young people in peril. According to his autobiography Lemony Snicket: the Unauthorized Autobiography, Snicket "grew up near the sea and currently lives beneath it. To his horror and dismay, he has no wife or children, only enemies, associates, and the occasional loyal manservant. His trial has been delayed, so he is free to continue researching and recording the tragic tales of the Baudelaire orphans." Hmmm. Perhaps an autobiography purporting that it may or may not be true isn't the best place to begin.

Instead, let us focus on Daniel Handler, the man who might actually be responsible for composing the Series of Unfortunate Events books according to certain skeptics (which include Handler, himself). Daniel Handler has been asked many times why anyone would want to make a career of chronicling the ghastly trials of a trio of ill-fated orphans. "When I was young, my favorite stories were not the sort of children's books that are constantly being thrust at you when you're little," he explained in an audio essay on Barnes & Noble.com. "I didn't like books where people played on a sports team and won a bunch of games, or went to summer camp and had a wonderful time. I really liked a book where a witch might cut a child's head off or a pack of angry dogs might burst through a door and terrorize a family. So, I guess it should not be surprising that when I turned to children's literature I tried to think of all sorts of interesting things to happen to small children, and all of these things were pretty dreadful."

Handler has long made it clear that his wildly popular series would be limited to thirteen installments. The Penultimate Peril: Book the Twelfth finds the much-beleaguered Baudelaire orphans "enjoying" a family vacation at a menacing hotel, and Handler is wrapping up his saga with The End: Book the Thirteenth, which promises to tie up all remaining threads in the story in an undoubtedly exciting manner.

However, the conclusion of his series is no indication that Handler plans on bringing his writing career to an end. He has also written adult-targeted titles under his own name, including his latest, Adverbs: A Novel. This exploration of love, which Publishers Weekly deemed "lovely" and "lilting," may forgo the trademark Lemony Snicket wry morbidity, but Handler ensures readers that the book isn't without its own unfortunate events. "It's a fairly miserable story, as any story about love will be," he says. "People try to find love -- some of them find it, some of them don't, some of them have an unhappy time even if they do find it -- but it is considerably more cheerful than any of my so-called children's books."

Good To Know

Daniel Handler has a potentially embarrassing confession to make: he is an avowed accordion player. Handler says that when he told his parents about his decidedly uncool musical pursuits, they reacted "as if I had taken up heroin."

His interest in music does not end with the accordion. Close friend and leader of indie-rock band The Magnetic Fields Steven Merritt has written an original song for each audio book version of the Series of Unfortunate Events books. Merritt and Handler will be releasing a CD of all 13 "dreadful" songs when the final installment of the series is published in late 2006. Handler also lent his accordion-laying talents to The Magnetic Fields' critically acclaimed album 69 Love Songs.

Handler's persistence may rival that of the never-say-die Baudelaire orphans. His first novel, The Basic Eight, was rejected 37 times before it was finally published.

He enjoys the work of novelist Haruki Murakami so much that Handler devoted an entire essay to the subject in the plainly and guilelessly entitled Village Voice review, "I Love Murakami."

According to a former high school classmate writing in the local paper, Handler was "voted not only Class Clown, but also Best Actor, Chatterbox, and Teacher's Pet."

A few fun facts from our interview with Handler:

"I can cook anything."

"I know one very good card trick."

"I auditioned for an enormous role in the film Gigli."

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    1. Also Known As:
      In some parts, people get to know him through his handler, Daniel Handler.
    2. Hometown:
      Snicket is something of a nomad. Handler lives in San Francisco, California.
    1. Date of Birth:
      February 28, 1970
    2. Place of Birth:
      Handler was born in San Francisco in 1970, and says Snicket's family has roots in a land that's now underwater.
    1. Education:
      Handler is a 1992 graduate of Wesleyan University in Connecticut.
    2. Website:

Table of Contents

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First Chapter

A Series of Unfortunate Events #10: The Slippery Slope

Chapter One

A man of my acquaintance once wrote a poem called "The Road Less Traveled," describing a journey he took through the woods along a path most travelers never used.The poet found that the road less traveled was peaceful but quite lonely,and he was probably a bit nervous as he went along, because if anything happened on the road less traveled, the other travelers would be on the road more frequently traveled and so couldn't hear him as he cried for help. Sure enough, that poet is now dead.

Like a dead poet, this book can be said to be on the road less traveled, because it begins with the three Baudelaire children on a path leading through the Mortmain Mountains, which is not a popular destination for travelers, and it ends in the churning waters of the Stricken Stream, which few travelers even go near. But this book is also on the road less traveled, because unlike books most people prefer, which provide comforting and entertaining tales about charming people and talking animals, the tale you are reading now is nothing but distressing and unnerving, and the people unfortunate enough to be in the story are far more desperate and frantic than charming, and I would prefer to not speak about the animals at all. For that reason, I can no more suggest the reading of this woeful book than I can recommend wandering around the woods by yourself, because like the road less traveled, this book is likely to make you feel lonely, miserable, and in need of help.

The Baudelaire orphans, however, had no choice but to be on the road less traveled. Violet and Klaus, the two elder Baudelaires, were in a caravan, traveling very quickly along the high mountain path. Neither Violet, who was fourteen, nor Klaus, who had recently turned thirteen, had ever thought they would find themselves on this road, except perhaps with their parents on a family vacation. But the Baudelaire parents were nowhere to be found after a terrible fire destroyed their home -- although the children had reason to believe that one parent may not have died in the blaze after all -- and the caravan was not heading up the Mortmain Mountains, toward a secret headquarters the siblings had heard about and were hoping to find. The caravan was heading down the Mortmain Mountains, very quickly, with no way to control or stop its journey, so Violet and Klaus felt more like fish in a stormy sea than travelers on a vacation.

But Sunny Baudelaire was in a situation that could be said to be even more desperate. Sunny was the youngest Baudelaire, still learning to speak in a way that everyone could understand, so she scarcely had words for how frightened she was. Sunny was traveling uphill, toward the headquarters in the Mortmain Mountains, in an automobile that was working perfectly, but the driver of the automobile was a man who was reason enough for being terrified. Some people called this man wicked. Some called him facinorous, which is a fancy word for "wicked." But everyone called him Count Olaf, unless he was wearing one of his ridiculous disguises and making people call him a false name. Count Olaf was an actor, but he had largely abandoned his theatrical career to try to steal the enormous fortune the Baudelaire parents had left behind. Olaf's schemes to get the fortune had been mean-spirited and particularly complicated, but nevertheless he had managed to attract a girlfriend, a villainous and stylish woman named Esmé Squalor, who was sitting next to Count Olaf in the car, cackling nastily and clutching Sunny on her lap. Also in the car were several employees of Olaf's, including a man with hooks instead of hands, two women who liked to wear white powder all over their faces, and three new comrades Olaf had recently recruited at Caligari Carnival. The Baudelaire children had been at the carnival, too, wearing disguises of their own, and had pretended to join Count Olaf in his treachery, but the villain had seen through their ruse, a phrase which here means "realized who they really were, and cut the knot attaching the caravan to the car, leaving Sunny in Olaf's clutches and her siblings tumbling toward their doom." Sunny sat in the car and felt Esmé's long fingernails scratch her shoulders, and worried about what would happen to her and what was happening to her older siblings, as she heard their screams getting fainter and fainter as the car drove farther and farther away.

"We have to stop this caravan!" Klaus screamed. Hurriedly, he put on his glasses, as if by improving his vision he might improve the situation. But even in perfect focus, he could see their predicament was dire. The caravan had served as a home for several performers at the carnival's House of Freaks before they defected -- a word which here means "joined Count Olaf's band of revolting comrades " -- and now the contents of this tiny home were rattling and crashing with each bump in the road. Klaus ducked to avoid a roasting pan, which Hugo the hunchback had used to prepare meals and which had toppled off a shelf in the commotion. He lifted his feet from the floor as a set of dominoes skittered by -- a set that Colette the contortionist had liked to play with. And he squinted above him as a hammock swung violently overhead. An ambidextrous person named Kevin used to sleep in that hammock until he had joined Olaf's troupe, along with Hugo and Colette, and now it seemed like it might fall at any moment and trap the Baudelaires beneath it.

The only comforting thing that Klaus could see was his sister, who was looking around the caravan with a fierce and thoughtful expression and unbuttoning the shirt the two siblings were sharing as part of their disguise ...

A Series of Unfortunate Events #10: The Slippery Slope. Copyright © by Lemony Snicket. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 528 )
Rating Distribution

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(432)

4 Star

(65)

3 Star

(18)

2 Star

(3)

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(10)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 529 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2011

    I LOVE it !!!!!!!!!!!

    Its the most amazing book ever
    You just have to read it .
    Youll love it from the minute you start readin

    13 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 4, 2011

    Love this series!

    Very interesting and the books get better and better......

    10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2012

    I love this book a lot!

    Snicket is a wonderful author! He has written lots of novels, including this one, you rock snicket!!!!!!!!!!!! :D

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2011

    Review of the Snow

    Despite the fact these books are closely related, each bookis wonderful! I truly love the romantic set up of Violet and Quigley.

    8 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2012

    Thrilling

    This book is when u find out a lot of secrets!!!!! Thrilling read

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 30, 2011

    best book

    this book is very very un-expecting. and truly sad and heart pumping

    7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2012

    Awesome book!

    Good book so far and people who spoil the story or are going to spoil it 1. Think about other people going to buy it. 2. KNOCK IT OFF!

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2012

    By mia ;)

    Favorite book!!!dont know what to read aftr im done with the series???do any of you wont to be my friend i can talk to you every day???? And im only a kid not lieing swear to god

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2011

    Peerfect

    No one dies!

    3 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 30, 2012

    QUIGLEY QUAGMIRE

    These books i hav finished in a month im only 5th grader 2! But anyways i really like them and i was thrilled to learn Quigley was still alive...

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 2, 2012

    I'm a really good reader

    I am really good at reading and i've read like a billion books but i like the series of unfortunate books the best.a must read!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2012

    Quigly

    Pour qhigli got washed away i wonder if he survived.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2012

    So worth it!

    I read this book in about 45 minutes but it was still worth it!

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 26, 2011

    meh it was ok i guess.......

    this story is just like all the others in the series except it takes place in a different location with a different guardian and count olaf uses different tactics on the children to try and kill them and yada yada yada....... this is just the same old story written just about 11 times until the last book where it finally changes....... lemony snicket could do alot better..... just saying

    2 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2013

    Mee

    Poor violet kluas and sunny at least they findvthe survivor of the fire they thought it might be their parents but it was quigley quagmire

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2013

    Best thing ever

    If you read number five youll be shocked to find...Quigley!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2012

    Great series

    This is a great book series. This series got me to read more and trust me i never used to liske reading. So ya. Great series yiu shiuld really read it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2012

    Ii Fgdtddgx

    I have read 12345678 and 9 but not 10

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2012

    Love it!

    I'M ON THIS BOOK! SO FAR SO GOOD!:)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 29, 2003

    UNDECIDED

    Nothing can beat Harry Potter! I feel that this series is to elementary in its style and not as entertaining to the older 20 something crowd. Im not sure how I feel about it. You kinda have to get used to the way he wrights. The most anoying thing he does in the books is explain what words mean, in exactly the same way, on every other page. It gets really old quite quickly. I am on book 4 now, but for those die hard Potter fans, you'll be sorely disapointed with this series.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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