Little Brown, 2012
13-year-old Lemony Snicket seems to always be asking the wrong questions. After an unusual education, Snicket is sent on an assignment with his chaperone, S. Theodora Markson, to a small seaside town that is no longer by the sea. They were hired to steal back the valuable statue of the Bombinating Beast, a local legend. However, not everything is as it seems and Snicket is preoccupied by what he left behind in the city. Through the help of Moxie and Ellington, Snicket tries to solve the mysteries and keep all of his various promises.
Review: I’ve always liked The Series of Unfortunate Events and I’ve been meaning to read this new Lemony Snicket book since it came out last year. Now I’ve finally got around to it. I thought Who Could That Be at This Hour? was a quick, fun read, filled with Snicket’s wry humor. What I like most is how Who Could That Be at This Hour? sets up the story for the rest of the series. In so many novels, there is an over load of information, with this book, it’s the exact opposiste. This novel is a fictional-autobiography of the author Lemony Snicket. Because the author is the main character, the main character already knows what happens and limits what the reader knows. There are many times throughout the story where this is apparent by saying. “I wasn’t going to see her again, but I didn’t know that then.” It makes the reader want to find out what is going to happen and really pulls the reader into the story.
This first installment of a four part series is less bleak and has a tiny bit more hope than The Series of Unfortunate Events. The illustrations are sinister. They are all done in blue tones with all the people in black. The reader rarely sees anyone’s face, which serves to bring out the mystery in the text. Snicket still uses his traditional wit and pragmatism. Fans of The Series of Unfortunate Events and new readers alike will enjoy this twisty mystery.