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Description - Boy by Roald Dahl

"I sat down in assembly one day and started to read this book to my two hundred and forty students, deciding that I would stop when restlessness became too obvious. I went on...and on...and on. In the end I had to stop before the school seized up, and still the children clamoured for more." Gerald Haigh, TES

Buy Boy by Roald Dahl from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.

Book Details

ISBN: 9780435123000
ISBN-10: 0435123009
Format: Hardback
(193mm x 133mm x 12mm)
Pages: 160
Imprint: Heinemann
Publisher: Pearson Education Limited
Publish Date: 4-Apr-1986
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Book Reviews - Boy by Roald Dahl

US Kirkus Review » "Throughout my young days at school and just afterwards a number of things happened to me that I have never forgotten. . . . Some are funny. Some are painful. Some are unpleasant. I suppose that is why I have always remembered them so vividly." Vividly indeed: with the intimate, confiding tone of a born storyteller, Dahl turns each of his family/school memories into a miniature adventure, thriller, or horror-story - with the earthy emphasis on pleasure (food, comradeship), fear, and pain. After a brief, charming slice of family-history, explaining how his Norwegian parents came to live and prosper in Wales, Dahl gets right down to business. From the years at Llandaff Cathedral School (ages 7-9, 1923-25), there's a candy-by-candy tribute to the local sweet-shop, site of "The Great Mouse Plot": Roald and friends, fed up with the meanness of filthy sweet-shop-owner Mrs. Pratchett, secretly put a dead mouse in the Gobstopper jar - but suffered mightily for their glorious prank. (Mrs. P. reported the crime to the Headmaster - unleashing the first of many school-career canings, all described in gruesome, technicolor detail.) Summer vacations in Norway are also recalled in a mixture of ecstasy - the fish, the scenery - and agony: an operation for adenoid removal without any anesthetic. And the extremes of pleasure and pain continue through Dahl's years at two English boarding schools: homesickness, sadistic Matrons and Masters, practical jokes, the indignities of "fagging" (warming up the toilet-seat for older boys), chocolates. . . and, always, the dreaded Headmaster's cane. ("By now I am sure you will be wondering why I lay so much emphasis upon school beatings in these pages. The answer is that. . . I couldn't get over it. I never have got over it.") Some readers may be put off by Dahl's style here - chatty, bedtime-story-ish, deceptively avuncular. Others might not take to the British references (no special explanations for a US audience), or the particularly British approach - full of bitter humor and odd relish - to grisly, gory matters. But those who've appreciated Dahl in various forms will find both the master of chills and the lover of chocolate here - in a fine, juicy collage of funny/awful boyhood highlights. (Kirkus Reviews)


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