This, you won't be surprised to hear, was a re-reading. I started out reading it to my nine-year-old son. He, of course, soon zoomed ahead on his own, leaving me to finish more slowly. I think that makes it three times for him. Definitely just the two for me. And he's read it at least once more between me first drafting this post and finally getting round to publishing it.
So, how is it? In particular, how does it hold up to a re-reading? The short answers are “great” and “really well”.
I’m a sucker for Rowling’s work, an unashamed big fan. And obviously, I wouldn’t have been reading it again if I hadn’t liked it the first time.
So, yeah, it’s great. Probably not the best of the series (though I’m not sure I could say what that is), but not the worst, either.
I have a view on the major plot spoiler, but I won’t go into that here. Suffice to say that I’m largely convinced by the arguments of the site whose very domain name is a spoiler (though I see that it has changed its name, now).
What with Harry Potter, the Lemony Snicket books, the Artemis Fowl books and others, we are truly living through a golden age of children’s literature (or at least, publishing).
I was surprised, when I asked my son whether he was more eagerly awaiting “Seven or Thirteen,” that he said, “Thirteen.” Perhaps he sensed that Mr Snicket would be finished before Ms Rowling; and it turns out that he was right: the final adventure of the unfortunate Baudelaire orphans is coming out next month (on Friday the thirteenth, suitably enough.