The Composer is Dead by Lemony Snicket, Illus. Carson Ellis, Music by Nathaniel Stookey (HarperCollins Publishers, 2009, 40pp.)
The Composer is dead, and someone, according to the Inspector, must be held accountable. From the creator of A Series of Unfortunate Events comes this unique and fresh examination of musical performance. While the book can be read on its own, it is accompanied by a recorded narration performed by none other than Lemony Snicket himself. As the Inspector accuses each section of murder, the Instruments (played beautifully by the San Francisco Symphony) defend themselves using an eloquent combination of speech and classical music. However, as daring as this work is, the musical breaks between narration sometimes border on excessive length, and younger readers may lose interest. For the older child who has an appreciation for classical music, this is a rare treat indeed. Recommended for Ages 9-12.
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