The Hostile Hospital: Book the Eighth (A Series of Unfortunate Events)

The Hostile Hospital: Book the Eighth (A Series of Unfortunate Events)


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780064408660
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 09/04/2001
Series: A Series of Unfortunate Events
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 23,881
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.10(h) x 1.00(d)
Lexile: 1110L (what's this?)
Age Range: 9 - 12 Years

About the Author

Lemony Snicket had an unusual education which may or may not explain his ability to evade capture. He is the author of the 13 volumes in A Series of Unfortunate Events, several picture books including The Dark, and the books collectively titled All The Wrong Questions.

Brett Helquist's celebrated art has graced books from the charming Bedtime for Bear, which he also wrote, to the New York Times–bestselling A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket to the glorious picture book adaptation of Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol. 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.


Snicket is something of a nomad. Handler lives in San Francisco, California.

Date of Birth:

February 28, 1970

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.


Handler is a 1992 graduate of Wesleyan University in Connecticut.

Read an Excerpt

Excerpt from

Chapter 1

There are two reasons why a writer would end a sentence with the word "stop" written entirely in capital letters STOP. The first is if the writer were writing a telegram, which is a coded message sent through an electrical wire STOP. In a telegram, the word "stop" in all capital letters is the code for the end of a sentence STOP. But there is another reason why a writer would end a sentence with "stop" written entirely in capital letters, and that is to warn readers that the book they are reading is so utterly wretched that if they have begun reading it, the best thing to do would be to stop STOP. This particular book, for instance, describes an especially unhappy time in the dreadful lives of Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire, and if you have any sense at all you will shut this book immediately, drag it up a tall mountain, and throw it off the very top STOP. There is no earthly reason why you should read even one more word about the misfortune, treachery, and woe that are in store for the three Baudelaire children, any more than you should run into the street and throw yourself under the wheels of a bus STOP. This "stop"-ended sentence is your very last chance to pretend the "STOP" warning is a stop sign, and to stop the flood of despair that awaits you in this book, the heart-stopping horror that be gins in the very next sentence, by obeying the "STOP" and stopping STOP.

The Baudelaire orphans stopped. It was early in the morning, and the three children had been walking for hours across the flat and unfamiliar landscape. They were thirsty, lost, and exhausted, which are three good reasons to end a long walk, but they were also frightened, desperate, and not far from people who wanted to hurt them, which are three good reasons to continue. The siblings had abandoned all conversation hours ago, saving every last bit of their energy to put one foot in front of the other, but now they knew they had to stop, if only for a moment, and talk about what to do next.

The children were standing in front of the Last Chance General Store-the only building they had encountered since they began their long and frantic nighttime walk. The outside of the store was covered with faded posters advertising what was sold, and by the eerie light of the half-moon, the Baudelaires could see that fresh limes, plastic knives, canned meat, white envelopes, mango-flavored candy, red wine, leather wallets, fashion magazines, goldfish bowls, sleeping bags, roasted figs, cardboard boxes, controversial vitamins, and many other things were available inside the store. Nowhere on the building, however, was there a poster advertising help, which is really what the Baudelaires needed.

"I think we should go inside," said Violet, taking a ribbon out of her pocket to tie up her hair. Violet, the eldest Baudelaire, was probably the finest fourteen-year-old inventor in the world, and she always tied her hair up in a ribbon when she had to solve a problem, and right now she was trying to invent a solution for the biggest problem she and her siblings had ever faced. "Perhaps there's somebody in there who can help us in some way."

"But perhaps there's somebody in there who has seen our pictures in the newspaper," said Klaus, the middle Baudelaire, who had recently spent his thirteenth birthday in a filthy jail cell. Klaus had a real knack for remembering nearly every word of nearly all of the thousands of books he had read, and he frowned as he remembered something untrue he had recently read about himself in the newspaper. "If they read The Daily Punctilio," he continued, "perhaps they believe all those terrible things about us. Then they won't help us at all."

"Agery!" Sunny said. Sunny was a baby, and as with most babies, different parts of her were growing at different rates. She had only four teeth, for example, but each of them was as sharp as that of an adult lion, and although she had recently learned to walk, Sunny was still getting the hang of speaking in a way that all adults could understand. Her siblings, however, knew at once that she meant "Well, we can't keep on walking forever," and the two older Baudelaires nodded in agreement.

"Sunny's right," Violet said. "It's called the Last Chance General Store. That sounds like it's the only building for miles and miles. It might be our only opportunity to get some help."

"And look," Klaus said, pointing to a poster taped in a high corner of the building. "We can send a telegram inside. Maybe we can get some help that way."

"Who would we send a telegram to?" Violet asked, and once again the Baudelaires had to stop and think. If you are like most people, you have an assortment of friends and family you can call upon in times of trouble. For instance, if you woke up in the middle of the night and saw a masked woman trying to crawl through your bedroom window, you might call your mother or father to help you push her back out. If you found yourself hopelessly lost in the middle of a strange city, you might ask the police to give you a ride home. And if you were an author locked in an Italian restaurant that was slowly filling up with water, you might call upon your acquaintances in the locksmith, pasta, and sponge businesses to come and rescue you. But the Baudelaire children's trouble had begun with the news that their parents had been killed in a terrible fire, so they could not call upon their mother or father. The siblings could not call upon the police for assistance, because the police were among the people who had been chasing them all night long. And they could not call upon their acquaintances, because so many of the children's acquaintances were unable to help them. After the death of the Baudelaire parents, Violet, Klaus, and Sunny had found themselves under the care of a variety of guardians. Some of them had been cruel. Some of them had been murdered. And one of them had been Count Olaf, a greedy and treacherous villain who was the real reason they were all by themselves in the middle of the night, standing in front of the Last Chance General Store, wondering who in the world they could call upon for help.

"Poe," Sunny said finally. She was talking about Mr. Poe, a banker with a nasty cough, who was in charge of taking care of the children following their parents' death. Mr. Poe had never been particularly helpful, but he was not cruel, murdered, or Count Olaf, and those seemed to be reasons enough to contact him.

"I guess we could try Mr. Poe," Klaus agreed. "The worst he could do would be to say no."

"Or cough," Violet said with a small smile. Her siblings smiled back, and the three children pushed open the rusty door and walked inside....

Customer Reviews

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Hostile Hospital 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 359 reviews.
J_Murrey6 More than 1 year ago
This is another great and exciting book from Lemony Snicket. It's the eighth book in A Series of Unfortunate Events. This time, the Bauldelaire orphans are hiding out in the Heimlich Hospital. But then, as usual, Count Olaf discovers them again. Violet is about to undergo the worlds first(and unnecessary) cranioectomy. Can Klaus and Sunny save her in time? Join in the action and see for yourself.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really liked this book but you should read 1-7 first =[] =[] =[] =[] =[]
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was terrific!! It's contents contain many pieces of a puzzle and keep you going. In every chapter and page something happens wheather good or bad to the three Baudelaires.It was so much fun to read this book. I highly reccomend it!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I like how now the Baudilares are going to have to go through life without Mr. Poe (not that he was of help any way)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wierd book but awesome its about the baudlaire siblings sunny,klaus,and violet all 3of them are running away from an evil nasty man count olaf who is trying to take their money.when they stop at a general store they hear about vfd so they try to find out the secret of it.
colemanstudent-mnt More than 1 year ago
i first read this book in school by my english teacher told me to read the 1st book and i did as soon as i read it i was hooked and i keepet asking for more and more and so on.... but this book this particular book is awesome because its full of adventure and mystery and like realy fun to ready ive almost read the whole series and i love it i highly recomend this bbok to you.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Hostile Hospital: By Lemony Snicket The Hostile Hospital by Lemony Snicket is the eighth book in the Series of Unfortunate Events book series. The story starts when Violet, Klaus and Sunny went into the Last Chance General Store to hide from the police. Can you already tell how exciting this book is? Don't stop reading only gets more exciting! After being recognized, the children must flee for their lives. They find a van, and after a long argument, they decide to stowaway in the van. Because of the crimes they just committed, they need to create disguises and new identities. Their stowaway tactics work amazingly because the van took them to a hospital which allows them to search for a man connected to their uncle, the story's villain. When they go into the hospital, the children had to work in the Library Of Resources. The person that put them there, told them that children had to be seen, not heard. So the person that gave the children the job, didn't present himself and only told the children what to do, also he would tell the children to be quiet when they talked. If the book is getting this exciting... image how it will get as we keep going. After being told what to do, the children went to the library. While the children where in the library, they had to set up papers. They could only read a bit of a paper, and then they had to decide where the paper had to go. Towards the end, the villain assistant separates the children, and the older sister is left alone. When the younger sister and brother can't not find their older sister, it seems as if hope as abandoned them. This book turns out suspenseful, even when you least expect it to be. This book is better than all the one's I read, because the kids must find the sister before it's too late. After the children are with the volunteers, they get a list with patients!! Only one problem... which patient is their older sister with a disguised name, and is getting a cranioectomy surgery!! When the younger brother and sister can't find there older sister, the children have to find a strategy to find there sister. Towards the end, the children's strategy work's, but did they find there sister? BUY THE BOOK if you want to find out!! The darkness was almost all around the room. Almost as if it were claiming it's territory. The children were in the room with the patient that they were going to perform cranioectomy for the first time in the hospital. The villains assistance were there to watch the operation gain life. The children had to stole the people to find a way out of the room. The younger bother talked about the rust of the saw he had. After a few more things that he talked about, the crowed got sort of mad. The people were tied that the operation still had no life. Who is this mystery patient though? As the children set their sites on their mission(s), the reader has to infer and predict throughout the entire story. When you think that might have figured out something, the book turns the tables around sometimes, and says something different/complete different. BUY THE BOOK PEOPLE! It is really this EXCITING, and MYSTERIOUS.
cloggiedownunder More than 1 year ago
The Hostile Hospital is the eighth book in A Series of Unfortunate Events by American author, Lemony Snicket (aka Daniel Handler). As we once again join the unlucky Baudelaire orphans, they are walking to escape the Vile Village where they were accused of murdering Count Olaf.   Having already suffered the loss of their parents, the threat of marriage, slave labour, hypnosis, a terrible boarding school, being thrown down a lift shaft , being thrown in jail and the murder of their Uncle Monty and Aunt Josephine at the hands of the evil Count Olaf and his nefarious assistants, the siblings are ever-vigilant of his reappearance. Luckily these well-mannered and uncomplaining children are also very resourceful: Violet invents, Klaus researches and Sunny bites.  Snicket’s tone throughout is apologetic, sincere and matter-of-fact as he relates the unfortunate events in the children’s lives; his imaginative and even surreptitiously educational style will hold much appeal for younger readers, as will the persistent silliness of adults.  Snicket’s word and phrase definitions are often hilarious. There are some literary references to delight older readers. This instalment sees the Baudelaires join a troupe of Volunteers Fighting Disease at the Heimlich Hospital. They are luckily assigned (by the Head of Human Resources, an adult who is heard and not seen) to filing paperwork in the Library of Records, enabling them to search for clues about Jacques Snicket and whatever intriguing information he had about the Baudelaire parents.  Of course Olaf, Esme and their nasty crew appear to make life difficult and dangerous for the orphans, causing them to resorts to disguise and untruth. Anagrams and alphabet soup play a big part in this instalment; Esme plays a deadly game of filing-cabinet dominoes; Violet almost loses her head, but manages to save the day using rubber bands and a make-shift megaphone. As always, the alliterative titles are delightful and Brett Helquist provides some wonderfully evocative illustrations. Trapped in the trunk of Count Olaf’s car, what will be the fate of our orphans in the ninth instalment, The Carnivorous Carnival? 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I think that this series is an interesting series full of crazy twists and turns! This series holds all of the tales of the Baudelaire orphans, Violet, Klaus, and Sunny!
AnaMardoll More than 1 year ago
A Series of Unfortunate Events 8: The Hostile Hospital / 9780061757204 I've reviewed the content of this 5-star book elsewhere, and would like to focus my review here on the ebook formatting. This ebook is perfectly formatted and is the ideal example of how to correctly migrate a paperbook to ebook format. The pictures at the beginning of the book are inserted correctly, and the table of contents is linked correctly to each chapter. I also did not observe any errors in the text nor any formatting issues with special characters. I am very pleased with this ebook purchase and recommend this edition of the book highly. ~ Ana Mardoll
GBev2009 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
As the series continues and the clues fall in place I am more and more hooked. Another very good entry (there have been some not so good ones) that continues to add to the mystery. It was fun having Count Olaf only participating in the story over the hospital intercom.It's also good to see the books continue to break away from the format of the early entries in the series which was getting a little monotonous.
aethercowboy on LibraryThing 8 months ago
I must say, what a dreadful hospital! It's only fitting for the plight of our poor orphans.Oh, I'm sorry, you caught me thinking out loud. As long you're not "certain people," and after you catch me thinking out loud, you don't put me in a holding cell filled with flesh-eating lemurs, then I suppose you're allowed to catching me thinking out loud every once in a while. Though, if I'm really thinking out loud, why do I hear a typewriter? Do you suppose somebody is transcribing us talking right now? I suppose it may just be the old pipes clattering about above us, or the machine gun shooting range above that.Did you read The Hostile Hospital yet? It's Mr. Snicket's account of the poor Baudelaire orphans, who really haven't had a break since their parents died in that miserable fire. This time, after fleeing the Village of Fowl Devotees, still the accused murderers of Count Olaf, who was not actually dead at the time, they find their only refuge: the Heimlich Hospital, which was only half a hospital, as there was an unfinished wing in which those poor orphans waited out the night each night during their stay.But every cloud has a silver lining, right? I mean, they did learn a valuable secret, but at the same time came upon an even more mysterious mystery to go along with the other mysteries they have encountered.And that cloud's silver lining attracted the only creature that would be so greedy as to seek out the silver linings of clouds, Count Olaf. I was so terrified when he and his accomplices came to the hospital and made matters worse for the orphans.I certainly hope that those orphans have found their rest. Or at least a lull in the terrible events that plague them.You haven't read it yet? Well, I would definitely recommend you do, provided you have read the preceding seven tomes happening before this one. You will probably be disappointed, but it will not be because of Mr. Snicket's writing. But what is life without a little disappointment? I suppose it's "enjoyable," but that is beyond the point.Now, if you'll excuse me, I must figure out what that rattling noise is...
readafew on LibraryThing 8 months ago
This is the eighth eviscerating episode in the lives of the Baudelaire children. The Baudelaire's narrowly escape a police net and fall in with some hippy's who give them a ride to the Heimlich Hospital. The Baudelaire's become much more proactive in this book trying to improve their situation, not counting on others to fix things for them. Another good book in the series and if you have made it through the last 7 books I'm sure you'll also hate the Horrible Hostile Hospital.
hjjugovic on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Ah, the poor Baudelaires go from bad to worse. Their series of horrible guardians seems cushy compared to their current fugitive status. Snicket adds a nice twist in this installment, but I'm still frustrated by the otherwise-brilliant Baudelaire's inability to put the VFD pieces together. Still, I'm glad to see them learning from their previous misfortunes and taking their fate into their hands.
KeRo0306 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
This is such a thrilling book. I can't believe that it's only the eighth in the series and yet so much is to be untold. Many things happen; as in a character almost getting their head chopped off which made me wanna keep reading.
smg-sbrowne on LibraryThing 8 months ago
this book is a stroy that has been continued about the Baudlures and the their problems with a caritor name Count Oler this a great book because it has kidnapping, fire and muder.
ababe92 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
This is my favorite book of the series. It is very suspenseful and Violet has her greatest idea yet in it. i recommend to children who like the series.
themulhern on LibraryThing 8 months ago
The Baudelaire orphans experience new difficulties as they find themselves in morally ambiguous situations and confronted with hostile mobs. A strong book with some powerful satire. Excellently read by Tim Curry.
KarenAJeff on LibraryThing 10 months ago
I wish I hadn't started reading this series but now I have to find out how it ends.
bibliophile26 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
More of the same. I need to take a break from this series because I'm tiring of it. I rolled my eyes at several things that happened...the world these children live in is so damn preposterous!
thc_luver6 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Kind of weird for me...this book. But it was good just like all the other books.
lisa211 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
The 8th installment is darker than the previous installments of this series. Close calls for the 3 main characters are quite a close shave indeed in this book that would glue you to this one until you're finished with this one.The three Baudelaire orphans, Violet (the inventor), Klaus (the intelligent) and Sunny (the biter) are on the run because they are now three most wanted fugitives who are charged with murder of the Count Omar (Olaf by misprint of The Daily Punctilio). They needed shelter where they could hide and hopefully people won't recognised them from the pictures printed on the Daily Punctilio regardless they misnamed them. A chance encounter with the ever so suspicious VFD (this time Volunteers Fighting Diseases), brought them to the Heimlich Hospital because they were on the run from the store keeper who recognized them. Things took a worse turn (again), when they heard a very familiar voice in the speaker. Count Olaf (the one who are after their entire fortune and would do anything to get it. and i mean ANYTHING!) found them again and this time with a chance they found the files about their parents in the Library of Records, which Count Olaf was looking for. Esme Squalor however found them and Violet got captured when the Baudelaire orphans split up. This time the Baudelaire orphans found themselves a fixed where Violet was about to get kill by Count Olaf's crew!I have to admit, it took me a while before I actually reach this book and sit down with it. The characters really pull me in with the fast thumping plots. The kids grew up with you in this book. You'd find them in a much mature state, Sunny finally could utter real 1-2 words. There is also the usual vocabulary lessons between the storylines. I pretty much enjoyed reading this installment like the earlier ones. I'm sure the lot of you would too.
the_unnamable on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Here's another fine mess for the Baudelaire orphans to get out of--hospital hijinx and daffy diseases. The strength of the series is that our young heroes are always much smarter than the hare-brained adults shuffling around, and it shows that with ingenuity, vocabulary, and... erm... pointy teeth, one can get out of any situation (unless of course one's feet is being gnawed away by rabid wolverines).And peeking out from the nooks and crannies of the book is our own would-be Pynchon or Salinger, Mr. Snicket. Playing Dante to his own long-dead Beatrice, and generally being elusive, Lemony Snicket is a real joy, writing a fun story for kids, but also throwing in the occasional Woolf reference or Ancient Greek (out of the mouths of babes!) for the scholars who are paying attention.
delaney.h4 on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Summary: The Baudelair's are undercover at a "hostile" hopspital. But are their disguises too convincing, as Violet is put into a sticky situation?Review: This was my favorite one in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago