The Wide Window (A Series of Unfortunate Events #3) by Lemony Snicket ~ Book Review

The Wide Window (A Series of Unfortunate Events #3)


Lemony Snicket

Illustrations by Brett Helquist


From Goodreads:

Dear Reader,

If you have not read anything about the Baudelaire orphans, then before you read even one more sentence, you should know this: Violet, Klaus, and Sunny are kindhearted and quick-witted; but their lives, I am sorry to say, are filled with bad luck and misery. All of the stories about these three children are unhappy and wretched, and this one may be the worst of them all. If you haven’t got the stomach for a story that includes a hurricane, a signalling device, hungry leeches, cold cucumber soup, a horrible villain, and a doll named Pretty Penny, then this book will probably fill you with despair. I will continue to record these tragic tales, for that is what I do. You, however, should decide for yourself whether you can possibly endure this miserable story.

With all due respect,

Lemony Snicket

My thoughts on this book:

The children have managed to avoid capture by Count Olaf again and now meet their new guardian, Aunt Josephine. She recently lost her husband and lives alone atop a hill in a rickety house overlooking Lake Lachrymose.


What is it with Aunt Josephine? She seems kind and the children feel safe, but she’s afraid of everything you could imagine and she’s absolutely obsessed with grammar.


Life is quite boring there and the children can’t help but think about their circumstances. While walking through the market one day, Violet runs into someone unexpectedly.

“Excuse m—” Violet started to say, but when she looked up she couldn’t finish her sentence. There stood a tall, thin man with a blue sailor hat on his head and black eye patch covering his left eye. He was smiling eagerly down at her as if she were a brightly wrapped birthday present that he couldn’t wait to rip open. His fingers were long and bony, and he was leaning awkwardly to one side, a bit like Aunt Josephine’s house dangling over the hill. 

Right away Violet recognizes the man as Count Olaf and he’s already in the process of wooing Aunt Josephine who is completely oblivious as to what’s going on. She seems to be just as unsuspecting as Mr. Poe. He introduces himself as Captain Sham, but the children know better and will have to find a way to free themselves from Count Olaf once again.


I really love the use of vocabulary in these books. It really gets kids thinking about some of the words like: vainglorious, dastardly, irreconcilable, cahoots, and repartee, to name a few. I’ve even learned some new words myself. The author also includes explanations for phrases such as ‘hook, line, and sinker’.

We enjoyed this installment. The imagery is just fantastic and really pulls you in. This one is just as dark as the others we’ve read up to this point. Even with the recurring themes, we stayed interested throughout, all the way to the end.

We’ve already begun The Miserable Mill and we’re flying through it. The one mistake I did make was allow my kids to start the Netflix series. I noticed a major spoiler just after watching the first episode that I don’t remember from the book. Even with the titles matching up with the books, it seems there will still be spoilers, so we may wait to move forward with the Netflix series.

My rating on this book is 5*****


Find this book on Amazon and Goodreads:

  • Age Range: 8 – 12 years
  • Grade Level: 5 – 6
  • Series: A Series of Unfortunate Events (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (February 2, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0064407683
  • ISBN-13: 978-0064407687

Thanks for reading my review. Have you read this series? Feel free to share your thoughts. 🙂

❤ Mischenko

25 thoughts on “The Wide Window (A Series of Unfortunate Events #3) by Lemony Snicket ~ Book Review

    1. Thanks, Jenn! I was so shocked, but it happened at the end and my son and I just looked at each other. Such a bummer, but it’s not ruined totally and I’m not mad about it. 😉 Hope your week is going well! 😘❤❤❤

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I hear you. I’m not really mad about it and I’m unsure how we missed it in the movie, but oh well. It didn’t ruin the series for us, that’s for sure. I hope you do try the series and let me know what you think about them if you do! Enjoy. 💜💙💜


  1. I am so glad that you and your children are enjoying this series. i bought this series for my son to share with his children when they are a bit older. I hope they continue to entertain you all.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Claire @bookscoffeeandrepeat

        They were entertaining! Read them all except the last one in high school. Haha. It’s been a while since I picked up the last book. It’s just sitting at my shelf taunting me. 🙈😆


    1. Me too! The vocab is fun. In my opinion, I would read the books first. I don’t like the spoilers in the series. Maybe they felt the need to lighten up a bit? Not sure, but the books are great so far. 😘❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Noriko

    Omg, you’ve just finished the book?! I’ve just started reading this, so I had to avoid reading too much into your review! (I’ll come back when I’m finished to compare our thoughts!)
    What a sweet coincidence, Mischenko!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Noriko

        I finished The Wide Window last night and I loved it so much!! Now I’m on to your blog post to see how our thoughts are different/similar!


  3. I loved these books when I was younger! Now my kids are in love with the stories as well. We read them before watching because of spoilers as well, but I had been warned about that before starting so we were lucky!


  4. starjustin

    With listening to you read the books with the kids, I have to agree that the books are much better and more detailed. I viewed part of the Netflix series and wasn’t as impressed. I do agree that the series is very unique in its own way. Awesome review! I’m looking forward to hearing more. 😃


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