Tuesday, June 07, 2005


Rather than bore you with 18 individual Dahl-review posts, I thought I'd keep it to one post.

James and the Giant Peach (1961)
Read 25 April 2005
This book is great. I love the first page with the runaway rhino. Turns out I'd only remembered half the story so it was great reading it all again.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (1964)
Read 26 April 2005
Beautiful, imagination inspiring, not as sinister as the film made it.

The Magic Finger (1966)
Read 5 May 2005
Took me about 30mins to read this book but its good. All about anger, punishment, right and wrong and repentance. And ducks.

Fantastic Mr Fox (1970)
Read 8 May 2005
This one took me about half an hour to read too. It's OK - not one of Dahl's best but then it is for younger readers so I guess I'm not meant to love it?! Pretty standard farmyard based bedtime story - smart fox outwits stupid farmers.

Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator (1972)
Read 9 May 2005
I found this book weird. I'm sure I read it years ago but I don't remember it. As a sequel to the Chocolate Factory its so different. It doesn't even flow as well. And Grandma Josephine is just too annoying! It's a bit like Dahl was adding in a few ideas he had that didn't get in to the first book.

Danny the Champion of the World (1975)
Read 12 May 2005
I LOVE this book. It has such a victorious feelgood factor to it and the relationship between Danny and his father is magical. It was also interesting to discover that this book holds the origins of the BFG which is actually a story that Danny is told by his father before bed one night.

The Enormous Crocodile (1978)
Read 12 May 2005
This is a REALLY quick read but kinda funny. Crocodile tells animal mates he's going to eat children. Crocodile devises several plans to catch children, each thwarted by a different animal mate, ending with elephant who throws crocodile into space. Simple! I think it's Quentin Blake's illustration that makes this book work actually.

The Twits (1980)
Read 12 May 2005
Mugwump Monkey and the Roly Poly Bird from the Enormous Crocodile return for this book. It's a fun read. And for those of you who think beards are attractive (you know who you are)... read this book. Beards are gross.

George's Marvellous Medicine (1981)
Read 12 May 2005
This book is great - a little boy's revenge on his horrible granny. Things have changed though - I read this book when I was a little girl and I'm sure it didn't start with a "Don't try this at home" page. Health and safety.... bah!

The BFG (1982)
Read 13 May 2005
Aw this book is great. There's something about the BFG which just makes me feel so compassionate towards him. A particular favourite bit is when he farts in Buckingham Palace.

The Witches (1983)
Read 14 May 2005
I'd forgotten so much of this book. It's great! Read it NOW!

The Giraffe, the Pelly and Me (1985)
Read 30 May 2005
What a great business idea! The pelican fills his beak with water and sits on the giraffe's head. The monkey climbs up the giraffe's neck and washes the windows. Genius.

Matilda (1988)
Read 5 June 2005
This book took me ages to read. I actually started it before the Giraffe... etc. It's sickeningly twee. I think the Disney film with Danny DeVito hasn't helped it much. It takes ages to get to the point (that Matilda can move things and that Miss Honey has had a terrible life). Matilda's character is written to be a loveable genius, not pretentious or arrogant at all but somehow it's all worn off for me and I found her really hard to like. And the way she's so infatuated with the sickly sweet Miss Honey too. Urgh... pass me a bucket! Maybe Mr Dahl was going soft in his old age?

Esio Trot (1990)
Read 6 June 2005
Esio Trot is a short Dahl-style love story about a man who switches the tortoises on his neighbour's balcony so she believes her tortoise is growing. It's a bit sinister and stalker-like really. Cute story though.

The Vicar of Nibbleswicke (1991)
Read 6 June 2005
I don't think I've read this one before. It's a short story that Dahl wrote for the Dyslexia Institute just before he died. All about the Revd Lee who has dyslexia and often says words backwards. Cue lots of funny moments where he asks his parishioners not to "krap" in the street outside the church and when discussing communion says that the best way to take the wine is to "pis" rather than "plug" A great book to end my Dahl marathon!


  1. Errr... you blatantly have read more books than me haven't you??? (my competitiveness rises!!)

  2. Hey - Roald Dahl fans - check this new museum that opens this weekend... got stuff from the new film and all sorts - might have to take the kids!!




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