Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Book review: "The BFG" by Roald Dahl

On the face of it, "The BFG" seems just plain wrong as a children's book. The  story revolves around giants who steal children out of their beds in the night and eat them. Oh, that's just PERFECT for a bedtime story!

And as a parent, do you really want a book in which the title character delights in flatulence?

Indeed, the scary parts of the story may have led to my 7-year-old son having some nightmares. But both he and sister still loved the book. And as for the flatulence "whizzpopping," in the giant's parlance of course, my kids thought that was FUNNY!

"The BFG" is the story of a Big Friendly Giant ("The BFG") and a little girl named Sophie. The BFG introduces Sophie to the strange world of giants, and together they set out to stop the nine child-eating giants.

The book has a little too much talk and too little action in the first half. But still there's something charming about the relationship between the BFG and Sophie.

And, as a read-aloud book, it was fun to read the giant's peculiar vocabulary. Human beings are "human beans," dreams are "bogthumpers," "grobswitchers" or "trogglehumpers," and he eats snozzcumbers while drinking frobscottle. (Run that sentence through your spell checker!)

The giant and Sophie are very likable main characters and the story takes some wondrous turns. They go to the land of dreams, for instance, and capture dreams and nightmares to put in jars. There's plenty of silliness, and then an exciting rush to a conclusion that kept us all going.

"The BFG" is the fourth Roald Dahl book I've read to my kids. Each one leaves me shaking my head sometimes in wonderment, sometimes in puzzlement. But they've never failed to surprise!

No comments:

Post a Comment