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The Penultimate Peril (A Series of Unfortunate Events #12)

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  71,783 Ratings  ·  1,659 Reviews
Lemony Snicket returns with the last book before the last book of his bestselling Series of Unfortunate Events. Scream and run away before the secrets of the series are revealed

Very little is known about Lemony Snicket and A Series of Unfortunate Events. What we do know is contained in the following brief list:

• The books have inexplicably sold millions and millions of cop
ebook, 368 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins (first published October 18th 2005)
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Brian Get a copy from your local library, bookstore, or read an e copy.
Christina I read it in the order that the chapters were already in purely because of convinience, however it might have been easier for you to read Sunny's,…moreI read it in the order that the chapters were already in purely because of convinience, however it might have been easier for you to read Sunny's, Klaus' then Violet's as that is the order that they got off the lift, however it really doesn't matter.(less)
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Mark Lawrence
I'm fairly sure I've never read 12 books in one series before (with the possible exception of Enid Blyton's Famous Five - which I read in random order with gaps, because they're all stand-alones).

To be honest, I don't think that even as a child I would have reached #12 in the Series of Unfortunate Events - which is not to say that they are bad books, more testimony to my need for change.

Anyway, I'm reading these to my daughter and we're in til the bitter end (Book 13).

This volume takes place alm
Apr 25, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: juvenile
same formula as all the others, but the plot thickens! favorite snicketism from this volume? “the three adults smiled at the children, and the children smiled back, but of course the baudelaires were not born yesterday, an expression which means “young or innocent enough to believe things certain people say about the world.” …violet was born more than fifteen years before this particular wednesday, and klaus was born approximately two years after that, and even sunny, who had just passed out of ...more
Mar 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is clearly the book Daniel was aching to write. The best, most complex, most complete, most well-constructed and most enlightening installment in the series. This is the book with the denouement of the series, indeed, and the main theme of the novels shines darkly through to the end. Kit's early insistence that the children will be able to observe nobility in others, to the final pages where nothing at all about nobility could be foggier, the moral ambiguity of adulthood and the wickedness ...more
Sep 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone who's read the first 11.
Shelves: snicket
Here's the point: The Penultimate Peril continues to tie it all together, and the return on your investment is shockingly huge. Lemony Snicket manages to tease out a few underlying themes, like what to think when good people let you down, and whether doing evil things makes you an evil person. There are incredible images here of reflections, fire and justice. The illustrations are also picture perfect. And even though the series grows dimmer and darker, it still manages to be one of the funnies ...more
I liked this book much more than many of the others. The mystery and everything is slowly becoming uncovered. I will do a full series review in my review of the last book.
Ashley Daviau
Mar 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is by far the most complex and interesting book out of the series! I just adored the whole concept of the Hotel Denouement and all the mysteries it contained. And once again we're introduced to a bunch of new and quite interesting characters that really add to the story. I also quite enjoyed the reappearance of characters from previous novels! This is by far one of my favourite out of the series and I'm quite sad I only have one more book left to read!
Jun 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade, mystery
~3.5 stars~
I'm kinda sad there is only one book left in the series, but I'm really curious how this is going to end lol So I definitely will be picking the last book up at the library when I get a chance xD
Kate (GirlReading)
3.75* another fun addition to the series. I really enjoyed all characters that returned in this and the fact that the Baudelaire's somewhat had more people on their side! I can't wait to see how this all wraps up in the end. I'm just hoping (although doubting) all my question will finally be answered...
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Guys, I don't know what to do. But I cried. I'm not sure what that says about me, but this book was really dark, and it made me get a little teary.

And now the wait for "The End" begins.
Richard Denney
This series could’ve easily been 11 books to be honest. Books 11 and 12 were filler books in my opinion and a bit on the boring side but I still enjoyed them because I love the characters so much. I’m really glad I got the audio books for 11 and 12, it made reading them a whole lot better and fun. There were some more mysteries thrown in in book 12 and a bunch of characters from previous books make a return which was fun. I hope 13 wraps all of this up. I’m going to miss these characters and wor ...more
Tasha (faeriedrugs)
Oct 08, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade
I think this is now my favorite in the series. As per usual, a lot of frustrating and sad things happened but I loved seeing old characters again and having more mysteries solved. I really hope the last book won't leave too many questions unanswered - I wouldn't be surprised though.
Beth Hudspeth
The end better give me more answers than the penultimate book did. It was full of peril.
Feb 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This may be my favorite book, if only for the Scalia burn which served to further cement Sunny as my favorite Baudelaire. Snicket is really very clever and it's easy to forget that these are "children's books."

I'm excited for the next book because a) I need some answers to these mysteries and secrets and b) reading a series back to back like this is starting to take its toll and I'm ready to be done so I can meet some new characters and plotlines.

Off to The End!

Thereza Andrada
Jun 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oct 26, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"... One can remain alive long past the usual date of disintegration if one is unafraid of change, insatiable in intellectual curiosity, interested in big things, and happy in small ways." page 180

"I'm not sure we ARE noble," Klaus said quietly, flipping the pages of his commonplace book. "We caused those accidents at the lumbermill. We're responsible for the destruction of the hospital. We helped start the fire that destroyed Madame Lulu's archival library. We-"
"Enough," Dewey interrupted gen
Lauren R.
4.5 stars. Man this one is so good. I loved it. Seeing so many ~people~ do ~things~ and come back was just fantastic. Not ready for these to ends!
Feb 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When we last left the Baudelaire Orphans, they were fleeing from Count Olaf and entering a car with a woman in the back seat who they had never seen before. That woman was Kit Snicket. Kit Snicket, one of the many on the right side of the schism, takes them to The Hotel Dénouement. There, they hope to learn the answers to some of the questions that plague them.

There, treachery is a foot. No one is who they seem to be and lies are a plenty. Kit informs the Orphans that they must rescue the sugar
Apr 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Now I am finally writing my review for this book, after collecting my thoughts a little bit. "The Penultimate Peril" is one of the best book in the Series of Unfortunate Events and definitely the one with the most shocking moments so far.
Here just a few examples:
(view spoiler)
Feb 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this one a lot. The mystery is still killing me though. I hope everything is cleared up in the last book and the Beatrice Letters. I really love how much the children have grown. I still love Sunny :)
I can't wait to jump into the last book when I wake up tomorrow. Laundry and dishes will not stop me from a full day of reading!
Esto es un delirio, no puedo más. Me caso con todos estos libros.
Isabeau's Literary Musings
I had legitimately forgotten how much I loved this book. So good! And everyone comes together which is brilliant!
Nov 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books, 2017
Brilliant but completely devastating. And to think, its only going to get worse.
Deborah Markus
Jan 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me. I was not in safety, neither had I rest, neither was I quiet; yet trouble came."

This book is probably the most daring in the series, literarily speaking. GR's spell check is telling me "literarily" isn't an actual word, but it's wrong. "Literarily" can be derived logically, so deal with it, spell check.

Snicket *crafts* this book. There are whole passages in mirror-writing. There's a "Not A Cha
Updating this from 4 to 5 stars. I forgot how many characters come back in this one. It's like a big reunion! Justice Strauss, Sir, Charles, Nero, Mr. Remora, Mrs. Bass, Jerome, some villagers from VFD,'s weird to have all these characters together and interacting and causing trouble for the Baudelaires.

Not to mention we get to see a bit of Kit, and far too little of poor Dewey. One particular part of this book that I really enjoy are the three chapters that take p
Apr 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Wicked people never have time for reading. It's one of the reasons for their wickedness."

The Baudelaire's find themselves in another tricky situation without many options. What will happen next? I cannot wait to read the final book in this series. My fingers are crossed that all my questions will be answered.

Full series review:
Sara Williams
Jul 26, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book #5 of Booktubeathon 2016

On one hand, I feel happy the story is evolving and abou to reach a climax, but, on the other hand, it seems as if more and more mysteries keep dragging along and we NEVER get any answers at all. I am excited enough to read the ~last volume~.
Janie Johnson
May 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Wow this one was a pretty dramatic book as well. The orphans go through some pretty dangerous situations while trying to convince themselves that they are still good and noble. It kind of makes me sad to know that they, being as young as they are, have to even have thoughts like that. Again I was completely engaged with this story, always rooting them on and trying my best to help them find solutions, but if you know this series and you know these orphans, you will also know that they don't need ...more
Charlotte Smith
Sep 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another good book in this series just wish the next book wasn't the last one
Jan 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Holy shit! I was a fool to think this story could not become any darker. The world is a wicked place. Finally, I'm going to read the final book of this awesome, awful series.
Patricia Lima
Dec 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tenho
AHHH está acabando!! Esse livro foi bem legal, o mais incrível é que a gente consegue perceber o quanto os personagens se desenvolveram no decorrer dos livros, o quanto eles cresceram e amadureceram, principalmente a pequena Sunny. Achei muito legal os reencontros com personagens antigos e esse final foi muito inesperado, vou logo ler o último volume.
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Lemony Snicket had an unusual education and a perplexing youth and now endures a despondent adulthood. His previous published works include the thirteen volumes in A Series of Unfortunate Events, The Composer is Dead, and 13 Words. His new series is All The Wrong Questions.

For A Series of Unfortunate Events:

For All The Wrong Questions:
More about Lemony Snicket...

Other Books in the Series

A Series of Unfortunate Events (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • The Bad Beginning (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #1)
  • The Reptile Room (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #2)
  • The Wide Window (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #3)
  • The Miserable Mill (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #4)
  • The Austere Academy (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #5)
  • The Ersatz Elevator (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #6)
  • The Vile Village (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #7)
  • The Hostile Hospital (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #8)
  • The Carnivorous Carnival (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #9)
  • The Slippery Slope (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #10)
“I suppose I'll have to add the force of gravity to my list of enemies.” 4764 likes
“The burning of a book is a sad, sad sight, for even though a book is nothing but ink and paper, it feels as if the ideas contained in the book are disappearing as the pages turn to ashes and the cover and binding--which is the term for the stitching and glue that holds the pages together--blacken and curl as the flames do their wicked work. When someone is burning a book, they are showing utter contempt for all of the thinking that produced its ideas, all of the labor that went into its words and sentences, and all of the trouble that befell the author . . .” 701 likes
More quotes…