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Daniel Handler was an American Author who went by the alias Lemony Snicket in his books, The Series of Unfortunate Events, this series is compiled of thirteen books. He did however write many other books, but is most known for The Series of Unfortunate Events. Daniel had a unique writing style and used life experiences in his writings. Daniel is the best American Author, he is an outstanding and creative writer.     Daniel Handler was born February 28,1970 in San Francisco, California. His father was an accountant and his mother was a college dean. As a child, he loved to read; however, he never read overly happy books. If the book ever had a happy ending he would throw it away. His favorite authors growing up were Roald Dahl and Edward Gorey. He went to highschool at Lowell High School, which was a very prestigious school, and attended college at Wesleyan University. He began writing poetry going into college and in 1990 he won the Poets Prize from the Academy of American Poets. He then moved to New York to be a freelance book and movie critic. Because of his success with poems and his love for books Daniel decided to publish his own. (Lemony Snicket Biography)     His first book was published in 1999 it was called, The Basic Eight. Then the alias Lemony Snicket was born. He wanted to write dark books for adults but his publisher pushed him to the idea of writing books for a younger audience. So Handler began brainstorming and he came up with a tale about three orphans that he thought children would like. After coming up with this idea he went on to write a series of thirteen books, The Series of Unfortunate Events.     The two most popular books out of this series are the first, The Bad Beginning, and the second, The Reptile Room. Both of these books were written in 1999. The Bad Beginning is the perfect way to start off this depressing series. He starts off with giving background into the lives of the Baudelaires and their incredible fortune. He then goes into detail about the mysterious death of their parents. The whole series focuses on these orphans seeking to find somewhere safe to live with relatives but their distant cousin follows them everywhere they go. He is so money hungry that he kills anyone in his way to the fortune. Throughout the series, Handler shows a unique writing style. He writes these books like he is involved and he is narrating us through the life of the Baudelaires. He will randomly pop up in the book with some witty comments or facts that you need to know. I have read both of these books and the best excerpt from The Bad Beginning is the very first paragraph. In each book he opens with a warning that says something along the lines of, ‘If you are interested in happy ending perhaps this isn’t the book for you.” In the first book he starts off by saying, “If you are interested in stories with happy ending, you would be better off reading some other book. In this book, not only is there no happy ending, there is no happy beginning and very few happy things in the middle. This is because not very many happy things happened in the lives of the three Baudelaire youngsters. Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire were intelligent children, and they were charming, and resourceful, and has pleasant facial features, but the were extremely unlucky, and most everything that happened to them was rife with misfortune, misery and despair. I am sorry to tell you this, but that is how the story goes.” Another thing that is amazing about Handler’s writing is that he uses description so well you can picture each character in your head. An example from The Reptile Room is, “After the fire, the siblings were sent to live with a distant relative named Count Olaf, a terrible, greedy man. The Baudelaire parents left behind an amazing fortune and when Violet was of age, Count Olaf was so obsessed with getting his filthy hands on the money that he hatched a devious plan that gives me nightmares to this day. He was caught just in time, but he escaped. Violet, Klaus and Sunny still have nightmares about Count Olaf’s shiny, shiny eyes, and about his one scraggly eyebrow, and most of all about the tattoo of an eye he had on his ankle. It seemed like that eye was watching the orphans wherever they went.”     Daniel Handler is known for being great with words. He was an astonishing poet and novelist. He has an array of skills and a lot of knowledge he can share with the world. Some of his most famous quotes are, “Fate is like a strange, unpopular restaurant, filled with odd waiters who bring you things you never asked for and don’t always like.” This quote shows his love for books and libraries, “A good library will never be too neat, or too dusty, because somebody will always be in it, taking books off the shelves and staying up late reading them.” My favorite quote of his is, “It is one of life’s bitterest truths that bedtime so often arrives just when things are really getting interesting.” (Daniel Handler Quotes)    The time period in which Daniel wrote was 1998-2006. Many things happened during these nine years. In 1998, the first portable Macintosh computer was released. This affected many writers lives because they could easily type and create. In the mind of Oklahomans the year 1999 is well known. On May 3, 1999 an F5 tornado hit Oklahoma City, Oklahoma killing forty-two people and injuring many. Although this did not directly impact the life and writing of Daniel Handler it impacted the United States as a whole, as many people gathered to pray and send support. (Historic Events in 1999) Another big natural disaster causing the death of 1,833 people on August 29, 2005 was Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Hurricane Katrina)    The biggest event that happened in this time period was the terrorist attack on September 11, 2000. On this fall morning, nineteen men associated with the Islamic terrorist group called al-Qaeda used four airplanes to complete suicide attacks against the United States. Two of the four planes were purposely flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. The third plane hit the Pentagon, which is right outside of Washington, D.C. The fourth and final plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania. About 3,000 people were killed during this horrendous terrorist attack. This attack triggered the U.S. to go to war with Islamic countries in the Middle East. (9/11 Attacks)     Because of these attacks Handler wrote an article in the New York Times saying, “Since September 11, interviewers have asked me if it is appropriate to tell such stories, when there are plenty of real orphans and villains to worry about. The answer, judging from the hundreds of e-mail messages and letters I have received, is that it is more than appropriate; it is necessary.My young readers are not only finding a diversion in the melodrama of the Baudelaires’ lives, but they are also finding ways of contemplating our current troubles through stories. The secret passageways, sinister reptiles and nefarious disguises in my books may seem a far cry from the real world, but when children write to me asking if Count Olaf is a terrorist, if the Baudelaires were anywhere near the World Trade Center, if the unnamed country where the books are set is in danger of being bombed, it is clear they are struggling with the same issues as the rest of us.” (Frightening News) Handler felt it necessary to share the truth of his books and how they are helping the youth of America in this time of terror. Handler obviously had a big part in influencing the lives of future America. His books helped children through the time of fear. These books gave them a picture of just how terrible the world is. It is good for children to know the truth of the world.     Daniel Handler should be remembered as an amazing author in America. He was not afraid to share the truth about the world. He also has a very unique writing style that intrigues readers of any age.

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