James and the Giant Peach, The Twits and Fantastic Mr Fox by Roald Dahl

Today we’re going to have some childish fun, because I sure did when I read these 3 books from my favourite children’s fiction author! In my attempt to cheat meet my 2013 Reading Challenge, I decided to pick up some short stories and Roald Dahl books were some of my picks. I adored Matilda (the movie AND the book) and I also loved The Witches. I read three of  his books, so below is my thoughts on them

James-and-the-Giant-Peach James and the Giant Peach

James lives with his two aunts after the death of this parents. These two aunts are nasty and horrible to him and literally make his life miserable. James wishes he could escape them and finally he gets that chance when a small man comes to him and gives him some seeds (with instructions) that is suppose to change his life. He spills these seeds and next thing he knows there is a giant peach growing in their garden. Of course his aunts try to make money out of it, but somehow James lands up in the center of the peach, making friends with large insects: a grasshopper, a centipede, a silkworm, a spider and a glowworm amongst others. Soon James and his new friends go on an adventure, which leaves for lots of laughs and I can see how this story would capture the attention of a young child. The funniest part of the story for me is how the centipede insist on the fact that he has 100 feet and he also insist on having poor James remove and put on his shoes. There were also many funny moments when the centipede and the grasshopper continuously tease each other! I definitely recommend this one to be read to your child or even yourself.


twitsThe Twits

The twits are an ugly and dirty couple.  They are mean and they play dirty jokes on each other all the time. They have pet monkeys and they make them stand on their heads all day. They also have this trick of catching birds by smearing glue on the trees and have the birds get stuck. The next morning Mr Twit would go remove them and Mrs Twit would bake them for every Wednesday’s “Bird Pie”. The beginning it was funny, but shortly after I just read it to finish it. Some funny moments, but this isn’t my favourite Dahl. What it does teach children is that it never pays to be mean, because the monkeys end up playing a nice trick on the Twits to teach them a lesson.

244280068_1381411209Fantastic Mr Fox:

There are three farmers who are after Mr Fox, because he steals their produce, whether it’s apple cider, chickens etc. They try to catch Mr Fox using various methods that doesn’t work, including trying to shoot him and his family. At the end of the day, Mr Fox and his family are trapped in their underground home, but because the farmers are watching the area, so are a lot of other animals. His children and wife grows hungry and thirsty, so Mr Fox thought up a fantastic plan to steal from the farmers from underground. He saves the day! He gets food and drink for his family and the family of his friends. His wife calls him Fantastic Mr Fox! Ok this was a nice “save the day” kind of story. I didn’t find it funny, but it’s nice and I would have liked it if I was a child.

As always, I loved the Quentin Blake illustrations! What’s your favourite Roald Dahl book? Have you read any of these three books?

Image sources: here, here and here

  • I read The Twits and Fantastic Mr Fox as a child the latter being my father’s favourite Dahl novel. I think mine would have to be George’s Marvelous Medicine well at least I remember loving it as a child anyway 🙂

    • I have that one and I must read it! Thanks for the reminder

  • I saw the fox movie, it was amusing 🙂

    • I’ve only seen the Matilda movie. I should watch this one too.

  • This is the best way to meet your challenge goals! My favourite still is Matilda. Its all about the books you know!

    • This was a fun way to meet the challenge. Yes Matilda is awesome, loved the movie and saw it so many times.

  • I love them all, but Matilda is probably my favourite! You’ve made me want to read them again!

    • Enjoy reading it again 🙂

  • James and the Giant Peach and Fantastic Mr. Fox both ring bells for me. Our son Joel loved the former; he read the book and we saw the movie together. Now our grandchildren are enjoying both. The fantastic always has a real message that rings true. I’m glad you chose the new year to feature such imaginative books.

    • Thanks Marian. I sure enjoyed reading it and I think some of his books definitely have a message behind the story, apart from being funny.

  • That’s not cheating, it’s just good reading! I adore Dahl.

    • Ok ok, it’s not cheating 🙂 It was so much fun.

  • Great author to highlight! I liked James and the Giant Peach…my third grade teacher read it to the class. I loved The BFG most of all…it’s all covered in sentimental gooey-ness from my childhood.

    • I haven’t read the BFG yet! Matilda still remains my favorite.

  • I love James and the Giant Peach, but I must admit that The Witches freaked me out…both the book and movie.

    Matilda is a favorite in our home. I love this post, and it’s important to get in touch with our inner child eery now and then!

    Happy New Year!

    Ricki Jill

    • Yay for getting in touch with my inner child 🙂 The Witches was actually an enjoyable read for me, but I didn’t see the movie…

  • I always loved James and the Giant Peach. The movie was really good too! One day I’ll read them all again and see what I take from them as an adult.

    • Goodluck with reading them again, and have fun!

  • Loved all these… read them aloud to my children.

    • So nice! I will do the same once I have children.

  • I haven’t read any Dahl in ages, what a fun idea 🙂

    • Then you should do it! 🙂

  • I haven’t read these in YEARS! Now I want to relive my childhood for a few days and read all the books!

    • I think that’s a good idea to read some Roald Dahl! Enjoy!

  • James and the Giant Peach was one of the first book I was ever given as a gift and it’s one I’ve read with each of my children and then again a couple of years ago just for me. I get something different out of it every time. Love it!

    • Really liked James and the giant peach the best out of the 3 I’m reviewing here! I think I will read it again.

  • I read James and the Giant Peach and just loved it. What a great idea to re-read these favorites… You don’t have to be a child to enjoy such fun and imaginative stories 🙂

    • I hope you will do the same 🙂

  • James and the Giant Peach is such a great book!!! I’ve also read The Twits, but never Fantastic Mr. Fox! Thanks for the fab reviews.

    • My pleasure. I hope you read some Roald Dahl in the future, it was so much fun!

      • Always! And I always read it to my elem school students because he’s so fun to read to kids!

        • Most definitely! I still remember our primary school teacher reading The Witches to us 🙂

  • Roald Dahl! <3 I loved the Twits and The Witches when I was little. But I didn't really love reading Matilda and the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but maybe that was because I had already seen the movies. I remember one of my teachers reading The Witches to us when I was 10. It seemed like a very long story, because she read everything aloud, but I'm not sure if it is that long actually haha.

    • One of my primary school teachers also read The Witches to us! I remember being scared! I really liked Matilda – the movie and the book. I must still read Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!

  • I used to read him so much as a child. I liked them all pretty much, though Fantastic Mr Fox, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and George’s Marvellous Medicine would be up there. Have you read any of his short stories?