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The BFG Paperback – August 16, 2007
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Evidently not even Roald Dahl could resist the acronym craze of the early eighties. BFG? Bellowing ferret-faced golfer? Backstabbing fairy godmother? Oh, oh ... Big Friendly Giant! This BFG doesn't seem all that F at first as he creeps down a London street, snatches little Sophie out of her bed, and bounds away with her to giant land. And he's not really all that B when compared with his evil, carnivorous brethren, who bully him for being such an oddball runt. After all, he eats only disgusting snozzcumbers, and while the other Gs are snacking on little boys and girls, he's blowing happy dreams in through their windows. What kind of way is that for a G to behave?
The BFG is one of Dahl's most lovable character creations. Whether galloping off with Sophie nestled into the soft skin of his ear to capture dreams as though they were exotic butterflies; speaking his delightful, jumbled, squib-fangled patois; or whizzpopping for the Queen, he leaves an indelible impression of bigheartedness. (Ages 9 to 12) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
I chose it over cable T.V.
The words in the story just tickled me pink,
After a while it made me think,
I'm glad Roald Dahl wrote this story,
If you read it, you won't be sorry.
Action-packed, and full of laughter,
I was splitting my sides just right after.
Page after page, I was stuck in the book,
And if you ask me its better than it looks.
I'm happy I found The Big Friendly Giant,
To read it again, I wouldn't mind it!
By Lori Schneider
This book left me searching for the complete works of Roald Dahl.
The heroine of this little book also carries its name. Matilda is incredibly intelligent, even as a small child. Living with her boorish parents and oblivious brother, she teaches herself to read from the various magazine and newspapers lying about the house. Her parents are completely indifferent to their only daughter and it is only by playing small tricks on them when they've been particularly nasty that little Matilda is able to keep a hold on her sanity. By age five and a half Matilda has read all the children's books in the library and quite a few of the adult ones as well. On entering school for the first time, our protagonist comes face to face with a very worthy enemy. The Head Teacher, Miss Trunchbull, is the worst kind of dangerous violent adult. It is only through Matilda's cleverness that she is able to come to the aid of her teacher, Miss Honey, and save the school from the Trunchbull's insanity.
As I mentioned before, Matilda is just the nicest kid ever. Intelligent without ever becoming pig-headed. Nice without becomes precious. She's just a swell child all around. Through her, Dahl takes some mighty fine cracks as his fellow kiddie lit authors. I was especially fond of the portion in which Matilda points out that though C.S. Lewis and Tolkien are fine writers, "There aren't many funny bits". And as we all know, Dahl is the master of the funny bit for kids. This book is chock full of them too. It contains all the usual peculiar Dahl touches (like kids being swung out of the playground by their pigtails) as well as practical jokes and nasty adults. The Trunchbull is perhaps THE nastiest adult ever to grace the pages of the Dahl world. Definitely unhinged, she abuses the children around her, coming just shy of actual physical contact. It is amazing then that Dahl doesn't dispatch of her in a violent or crazy fashion. She merely...disappears. Likewise Matilda's parents get their comeuppance by merely fleeing the country to Spain. Dahl was quite soft in his old age, it seems.
Reading this book today I was struck by how much Lemony Snicket owes to Mr. Dahl. Not just the usual adults-are-nasty-cruel-and-possibly-batty take, but the narrative voice as well. It took me a couple minutes to realize that this was Dahl talking and not Mr. Handler. Illustrated by Quentin Blake, the book is perfectly complimented by the illustrators' insane imaginings and concoctions. The Blake/Dahl pairing is often inspired, and it works to its best advantage here. I can't imagine this book without Blake's particular little pointy nosed heroine gracing the pages. For those parents who either don't approve of Dahl or just don't "get" him, I think "Matilda" is the perfect story to win them over. You'd have to be pretty hard of heart not to love its little heroine and the troubles she gets into. A charming treat to be enjoyed for years to come.
The book speaks about the importance of family values and being brought up properly, and about the the importance of your willpower and education to overcome any struggle and become your best self. Also, you get in life whatever your intention and willpower put to it.
The book reads effortlessly and fast, and it is truly enjoyable. A classic of children literature, and very important to reinforce positive female roles in a world that wants to turn little girls into little empty dolls.
I like Quentin Blake's illustrations style but they don't resonate with me with regards to Matilda, perhaps because I imagine Matilda very different from the character we find drawn in the book. This is a personal preference of course.