The Wide Window by Daniel Handler - Book Review


The Wide Window

The Wide Window by Daniel Handler - Book Review

The third book of the series introduces a new character, Aunt Josephine. She lives in a house hanging precariously on a cliff overlooking a large lake.

Considering that Aunt Josephine is scared of practically everything, it doesn’t make sense that she is living in such dangerous situations and in a town where hurricanes are apparently natural occurrences.

The setting is somehow oppressive, cold, and has an undercurrent of suspense and horror. The orphans once again are forced to live in a non-children-friendly environment and Count Olaf hurries after them, yet again plotting to steal their fortune.

Aunt Josephine is a paranoid woman who is scared of everything. This is why the orphans find themselves living in a very cold house. She doesn’t want to risk opening the oven or turning on the heat.

She also gives them gifts that don’t suit their ages or minds, and she gets easily fooled by Count Olaf’s new disguise: the melodramatic Captain Sham. However, Josephine used to know their parents just like Montgomery did and provides them with information on them.

She also is a grammar expert, which she uses later to send the orphans messages coded in grammatical errors. Count Olaf uses his “dashing” looks to win Aunt Josephine’s heart, thinking that this will give him control over the orphans; hence, control over their fortune, but, as usual, the intelligent siblings put a stop his plans and live another day away from his clutches.

The Wide Window provides a multitude of literary references. Damocles Dock is the dock from which the orphans take a taxi to their Aunt’s house and it’s also an allusion to the Greek character Damocles.

The dock even has a sword hanging referencing Damocles’ sword. The cover design and the illustrations are done by the amazing illustrator Brett Hultquist.

The last one in the book contains an illustration of squinting eyes behind glasses above the gate. This is an illustration foreshadowing a character named Dr. Orwell in the fourth book.


Book Details

Title: The Wide Window
Format: Paperback
Author: Daniel Handler
Language : English
Publisher : Egmont UK Ltd
ISBN: 1405266082

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Updated 3 years ago