|For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle
This was an amazingly phenomenal book. I couldn't remember if I had read this growing up or not. I distinctly remember the movie, but I don't think I ever read the actual book. So I picked up a copy of the audiobook from the library to listen to while driving for work.
This is such a magical, wonderful adventure. Typical Roald Dahl fantasy: dark, yet whimsical. There are a few dark, morbid things in the book (in classic Roald Dahl style) and some not-so-nice language (idiot, ass), but nothing too bad. It shouldn't deter readers or their parents, just something to keep in mind.
I loved this book. It is such a great adventure story. All these weird things happen and there are all of these amazing characters, it's just perfect. It all feels so effortless.
Even if you've read the book, I recommend the audiobook as well. Julian Rhind-Tutt does an amazing job doing the voices and it includes sound effects, which makes for a very fun story.
A very, very wonderful story. I loved every moment of it.
Roald Dahl's Book of Ghost Stories was a must-have for me for 2 reasons: 1. Roald Dahl is one of my favorite authors and I want to read everything he's ever written and 2. I love ghost stories. I have to admit that going into this one I was very much under the impression that this was going to be a book filled with stories written by Dahl himself. I clearly hadn't read the synopsis or book jacket because that is not what this book is about. This is a collection of some of Dahl's favorite ghost stories written by other people. He compiled this list when he was working on a project for American television and his preparation was extensive. He read 749 tales of the supernatural by different authors and from that large number he whittled it down to 14 of his favorites that he felt were not only excellent examples of writing in this genre but that would make for good television. (He also discovered that women are experts in this field and until the 11th hour he thought they would beat out the men with a hard majority.) Since there are 14 different stories in this collection, I will only talk about 2 that I found particularly chilling (and yes they are written by women).
The first is called 'Harry' and was written by Rosemary Timperley. It bore a striking resemblance to The Imaginary in that its primary focus was on a little girl who had a strong friendship with an imaginary boy. The biggest difference here is that the mom tried very hard to squash this relationship because she had a deep and abiding fear...of the name Harry. Yes, I too found this odd. Nevertheless, while it may seem irrational this fear was quite powerful and instead of ignoring the interactions of her child and her invisible playmate she let it consume her until...well you'll have to read the story.