Books

A Book Review of The Hostile Hospital

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

The Hostile Hospital by Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler)

Type: Adventure, Children’s

Basic Plot: The Baudelaires’ life has never been harder. Not only are they hiding from Count Olaf, but are now also on the run for being falsely accused of murder. While hiding, the Baudelaires still hope to find out about V.F.D. and one day again meet the Quagmires.

Quality

Plot: 4/5 Well Done: The plot has greatly improved. The plot is quickly and greatly changing. The children are still hiding from Count Olaf, but are becoming more desperate to find out about V. F. D. The plot also has a revelation that makes the plot more complex and is a new drive to the story.

Writing Style and Setup: 4/5 Well Done: The book has several hints in it for previous and later books. The author very wells leaves clues and revelations in a discreet and natural way. The style is also filled with more dark humor.

Graphics: 4/5 Well Done: The graphics were done in the same style as the ones in the previous book, pencil sketches. They were again scattered with clues about what would and will happen.

Moral: 2/5 A Non-Clear Moral and an Introduction to an Ethical Dilemma: The main moral of the story was clearer than some books, as the Baudelaires are trying harder than ever to stay together. By the end of the book, Klaus is determined that they should stay together even if it is dangerous. It is good for a family to b strong and stay together.

The “ethical dilemma” that is introduced is the question if it is ok to do wrong if it is for the right reason. This is only introduced in this book and is done in the last chapter, but in the remaining books it is pondered and discussed more. As a Christian, we know that the end does not justify the means. It is not ok to have an abortion if it saves a child from a hard childhood. It is not ok to lie if it keeps a friend from getting in trouble. I will save some of the deeper discussions on this for later reviews in the series, but I will say that I am looking forward to it.

Overall: 4/5 Well Done: The quality of the book is definitely improving in plot. The direction of the plot and moral discussions will gain even more momentum, and I can say that I will be enjoying it. I recommend it to children of either gender eleven to twelve and older.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 0/5 None

Violence: 2/5 Light and Attempted Violence: “Violent” is used as a description. It mentions that “people… wanted to hurt them.” Several people attempt to attack children in various ways, including smashing them with filing cabinets and stabbing them with stiletto heels that actually have stilettos. They never do get hurt. Some people attempt to cut a girls head off in a fake operation. They fail. A girl bites a man’s hand. A man worried about his butterflies being hurt in prison. Threats and slightly violent comments are made to and concerning children.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: 0/5 None

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 1/5 Some Possibly Slightly Disturbing Content: The dedication mentions a woman has died. Some people are falsely accused of murder. It mentions people that have died in previous books. Some people sing a song that mentions several illnesses and injuries, though it is not gory. It mentions a certain coat was made from dead animals. A man mentions that they will perform surgery “until the patient is dead” on accident. A man probably dies in a burning building, but it never says for sure.

Religious Issues: 1/5 Brief Mention: The author briefly mentions being in “the Cathedral of the Alleged Virgin.” It mentions that knives were used for pagan religious sacrifices.

Magic: ½/5 Brief Mention “Ghost” and “ghostly” are used as a description. The fairytale “Sleeping Beauty” is briefly told and mentions the witch.

Others: It briefly mentions there being an advertisement for wine.

Overall: 1½/5 Almost All Appropriate: This book is almost recommendable for all ages, the violence being the category to be the most concerned with.

Here is a link to the ninth review:

https://christianentertainmentreviewsblog.wordpress.com/2017/03/01/a-book-review-of-the-carnivorous-carnival/

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Books

A Book Review of The Vile Village

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

The Vile Village by Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler)

Type: Adventure, Contemporary

Basic Plot: The Baudelaires are now living in a village with a kind man named Hector. As kind as Hector is though, the Baudelaires will not be at peace until they rescue the Quagmires, who are leaving them clues about where they are.

Quality

Plot: 4/5 Well Done: The plot is still focused on the Baudelaires trying to escape Count Olaf, but is focusing more and more on the themes of rescuing the Quagmires and figuring out what V. F. D. is. This will continue more and more throughout the series. There were also a lot more exciting scenes in this book compared to the other ones. Hector and several other characters in the book were as creative as the other ones in the series are.

Writing Style and Setup: 4/5 Well Done: The author writes in the creative style of the other books, using a dark, humorous style. The story moved at a fast pace. This allowed for there to be more body to the story, I believe.

Graphics: The graphics were done in the same style as the ones in the previous book, pencil sketches. They were again scattered with clues about what would and will happen.

Moral: 2/5 A Vague, Mostly Good Moral: The moral of supporting each other as siblings is again seen in the end, though it is not spelled out clearly throughout the book. “You’re Parents Are Dumb and You’re Neighbor’s Evil” is actually not as strong in this one. The main adult who cares for them believes them, is supportive, and eventually overcomes his fears, but in the end he still does not help the Baudelaires directly (though he does help some other orphans.) This was nice, as most of the books show all adults that aren’t evil as extremely stupid.

Overall: 4/5 Well Done: This stepping stone in the series was done better than the previous two. I recommend it for ages eleven to twelve and older for children of either gender.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 0/5 None

Violence: ½/5 Slight Violence: It mentions a person can get their toes stepped on while sitting on the edge of a seat on a bus. It mentions that a man was murdered, and a child is accused of biting him to death, though she didn’t. A man kicks an old man away. A harpoon hits a crow. A girl bites a boy’s hand but as a sign of affection rather than violence.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: 0/5 None

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 1/5 Some Possibly Disturbing Content: Getting attacked by dogs is compared to walking in the rain. It mentions a man “swallowed a box of thumbtacks.” The people of the village punish criminals by burning them at the stake. Several people are threatened with this punishment, but no one dies this way. A mob chases some children threw a town. Children are threatened throughout the book. It mentions a child may fall in a well and that hyenas may eat you, the latter being described as “bloodthirsty.” While describing what a murder of crows it, it mentions that no “crows” were “killed.” While describing the phrase “a bolt from the blue,” it describes actually getting hit by lightning. The children fall to the ground and hurt themselves, two of them being lightly injured. A brick falls on someone’s toe.

Religious Issues: ½/5 Slight Mention: The phrase “deus ex machine” is used throughout the book.

Magic: ½/5 Slight Mention: There is a book called The Littlest Elf, and it is set in fairyland. It describes two people as looking like “monsters.”

Others: None

Overall: 1/5 All Ages Appropriate: This book is recommendable morally for all ages.

Here is a link to the eight review:

https://christianentertainmentreviewsblog.wordpress.com/2017/02/22/a-book-review-of-the-hostile-hospital/

Books

A Book Review of The Ersatz Elevator

WARNING: Reading this article may give away things in the story ranging from unimportant to plot turners.

The Ersatz Elevator by Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler)

Type: Adventure, Contemporary

Basic Idea: The Baudelaires are now living with the Squalors, a rich couple. Of course they are followed by Count Olaf again, but this time there are extra problems that they are trying to work through.

Quality

Plot: 4/5 Well Done: This is one of my favorite books in the series. I like the more interesting plot and the new characters in this book. The story was more exciting as the children had the goal of trying to help their friends as well as try to escape Count Olaf. The plot twist that reveals another main character in the book also makes this book a better one in the series, in my opinion. As I am rereading this series, I notice more hints to the character revelations than when I was a kid. As a child though, I hardly noticed them.

Writing Style and Setup: 4/5 Well Done: It was as good as always. The longer the books get, the more the author is able to express his unique style. The only think I don’t exactly care for are his definitions (probably because I know what those words really mean, so I find it a bit annoying). The suspense that he built to reach the conclusion of a matter and the way he describes scenes are both well done. The setup and pace were also appropriate.

Graphics: 4/5 Well Done: The graphics were done in the same style as the ones in the previous book, pencil sketches. They were again scattered with clues about what would and will happen.

Moral: 2/5 A Vague, Mostly Good Moral: The moral in this book is similar to book three. The children have each other to rely on and are thankful. The book series still has hints of “Your Parents are Dumb and Your Neighbor’s Evil.”

Overall: 4/5 Well Done: I recommend this book in quality for children of either gender and ages eleven to twelve and older.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: ½/5 Brief Mention: Some children think a baby is complaining about seen in her underwear when she really isn’t.

Violence: It mentions a person wondering if they hurt someone. Several people slip on doilys. Another man hits people on accident with a statue.

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: ½/5 A Little Misuse: “Gosh” is used once.

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 1/5 Some Possibly Disturbing Content: It mentions in the dedication that a woman has died. A man hints he is about to be executed. It never says he is, and it is implied that he is not. An example of the phrase “mixed bag” is given by the author that includes “man-eating and woman-eating lions.” A description says that a man’s eyes looked like they could “burn them to a crisp.” A boy mentions a girl who had been captured during war times. It mentions a woman that was afraid of the stove exploding. Children are threatened a few times in the book. Some children are shoved down an elevator. Some children are found that look traumatized from being kidnapped and mention that horrible things have and will happen to them, though it does not go into detail of what they are.

Religious Issues: 1/5 Brief Mention: The word “haunting” is used and explained, the explanation mentioning ghost. A man thinks some people are ghost. A knot is used that is called “the Devil’s Tongue.” It mentions a myth with fake heroes and creatures in it.

Magic: 0/5 None

Others: Several people drink non-alcoholic martinis, though a boy asks if they have alcohol.

Overall: 1/5 All Ages Appropriate: This book is recommendable for all ages morally, the worst thing probably being some children having been kidnapped.

Here is a link to the seventh review:

https://christianentertainmentreviewsblog.wordpress.com/2017/02/14/617/

Apps

An App Review of Hospital Dash

Hospital Dash by Tapps- Top Apps and Games

Type: Business Manager, Doctor, Hospital

Basic Game Setup: You are a doctor that runs around the room moving people to different parts of the hospital.

Quality

Game Play: 3½/5 Above Average: In the game you move among the patients delivering them different things that they need or taking them to different places. The game was a bit challenging, and unlocked more material as time went on. The levels sometimes made things more difficult by adding steps and things you had to do to make it more complicated, such as pressing the heart pressure at the right time or putting band-aids on people.

Graphics: 2½/5 Below Average: I couldn’t take the graphics very seriously. The characters were cheesy looking and the graphics were too cartoon-like. It wasn’t horrible, or even that much of an eye sore; the graphics just weren’t one of its strong points.

Music and Sound Effects: 3/5 Average: There was a main song that played through the levels, and the character talked as you pressed on things and moved.

Overall: 3/5 Average: The game was fun, but I would recommend it for children more than teenagers and adults for entertainment. I would recommend it for children in interest and quality five and six to twelve and thirteen.

Moral Content

Sexual and Inappropriate Content: 0/5 None

Violence: 0/5 None

Swearing and Using the Lord’s Name in Vain: 0/5 None

Emotional, Intense, and Disturbing Content: 0/5 None

Religious Issues: 0/5 None

Magic: 0/5 None

Others: None

Overall: 0/5 All Ages Appropriate: This game is morally recommendable for all ages.