This week, I finished books 4-6, The Miserable Mill, The Austere Academy, and The Ersatz Elevator. I think these definitely mark a turn in the series, as this is when the V.F.D is introduced, as well as the Quagmire triplets, which are both important elements later in the series. Not to mention that the Quagmire triplets are the first children that we get to see the Baudelaire orphans interact with (besides Mr. Poe's children). Most of the time, we just see how they interact with the horrible adults in their lives, and their friendship with the Quagmires is a moment of happiness and hope that is well deserved. It doesn't last long--we are repeatedly warned that the Baudelaires' story is not a happy one--but the moment of happiness allows the Baudelaires to grow as characters.
I'll be taking a brief pause from these books as I read something I was assigned for Booklist, but I'll be back to it shortly! And I hope to have another 3 books finished by next weekend.