You have undoubtedly picked up this book by mistake, so please put it down. Nobody in their right mind would read this particular book about the lives of Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire on purpose, because each dismal moment of their stay in the village of V.F.D. has been faithfully and dreadfully recorded in these pages. I can think of no single reason why anyone would want to open a book containing such unpleasant matters as migrating crows, an angry mob, a newspaper headline, the arrest of innocent people, the Deluxe Cell, and some very strange hats. It is my solemn and sacred occupation to research each detail of the Baudelaire children’s lives and write them all down, but you may prefer to do some other solemn and sacred thing, such as reading another book instead (goodreads.com).
In The Vile Village the children get their choice of village in which they would like to stay as part of a new guardian program based upon the aphorism “it takes a village to raise a child”. After looking at the list they find a village called V.F.D, which are the mysterious initials from the previous books, so they decided to live there.
Upon arriving they figure out the true name of the village, that it is home to a rather large murder of crows, and the citizens have to follow thousands of strict and ridiculous rules. I thought the village was pretty entertaining because all the rules were preposterous.
At least they finally find a great guardian to live with! Hector, the town handyman, is almost perfect and nearly cares completely about the children. He actually believes everything they tell him and even tries to help them solve their problems.
In this book, the Baudelaires find couplets that were dropped out of a tree. Upon investigation they believe them to be from Isadora Quagmire, which leads them to believe their friends are somewhere in the city. So they spend their time trying to figure out the meaning behind these poems while escaping from prison and a mob of angry villagers.
Eventually, they do figure out what it means and where their friends are. It is up to them to rescue them, but I don’t want to give away anything else.
The pace of the story is perfect and I found it to be very enjoyable and entertaining. I love that the plot is developing beyond its previous formula and contains some more mystery. At the end of this book the Baudelaires need to figure out how to live on their own since they ran away from the village. Should be an interesting next book!
There are two noticeable changes in the Baudelaire Orphans. One, Klaus is actually another year older so it tells us how much time has been passing by. Also, we can tell that Sunny is getting older because her speech is slightly improving and she learns to walk by the end of the book.
The new guardian in this novel is Hector and he is one of my favorites. He seems to really care about the children providing them with a nice home and their own rooms, as well as nice home-made dinners. The only problem with Hector is that he is completely terrified of the city elders, so when they are around he keeps his head down and won’t speak. This eventually leads to a problem.
Hector also reveals that he keeps many forbidden items in this shed. This includes thousands of books that are no longer allowed in the town as well as many mechanical devices and tools. If caught with these he could face the punishment of death, so he needs it to be kept a secret. I love that Hector is so interested in what the children enjoy and that he allows them the use of the items in his shed. Hector is one of the better caretakers they have had and he is even alive at the end of the book! Yay!
This is a great addition to the series and moves the plot further along. If you are enjoying the series than definitely keep reading because it seems like the books just keep getting better and slightly less formulaic.
My Rating: 4.5/5 stars!
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