When it comes to classic storytelling of wit, black humour and grotesqueness in an eccentric way, there is none other than Roald Dahl. Although Dahl had a successful career as a writer of macabre adult short stories, he is best known for creating some of the best-loved classic children’s stories in literature history.
Since the 1940s, some of Dahl’s notable published works include Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, James and the Giant Peach, The Witches, The BFG, George’s Marvellous Medicine and Fantastic Mr Fox.
Based on real-life experiences from his childhood, Dahl’s stories typically revolve around adult villains who hate and mistreat children, but luckily, there is always at least one good adult to counteract the villain. As a child, Dahl was especially inspired by tales of heroism and triumph, and he would often incorporate these morals into his stories as well.
Despite these stories being many decades old, these stories are quirky, odd, and frighteningly entertaining in the children’s eyes. Who doesn”t want powers like Matilda? Who isn’t grossed out by the Twits? And how could you not be amused and inspired by Charlie’s incredible journey of winning the golden ticket? Combined with Quentin Blake’s simplistic illustrations that complements so well with Dahl’s storytelling, Dahl’s works are an instant winner.
The world of Dahl has enlightened the world of literature for so long, and this is evident with Dahl’s children’s books being integrated in primary education syllabuses every year. You’d be mad not to have liked Dahl’s works as a young child — his books undoubtedly spark curiosity and a sense of rebellious imagination within us all. With Dahl’s works also adapted into popular film adaptations such as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (1971), Matilda (1996), and Fantasic Mr Fox (2009], this proves that the world of Dahl is still cherished by its audience, and that his stories will continue to be classics in many years to come.
Did You Know?
2) Amongst Dahl’s favourite authors were Rudyard Kipling, William Makepeace Thackeray, Frederick Marryat and Charles Dickens.
3) Dahl’s first children’s book was called The Gremlins (1943). Based on RAF folklore, the book revolves around RAF pilots blaming mischievous little creatures – known as ‘gremlins’ – for causing problems on their aircrafts.
4) Author J. K. Rowling named Charlie and the Chocolate Factory as one of her top ten books that every child should read.
5)The official Roald Dahl Day takes place every year on September 13, celebrating Dahl’s books and also the author’s birthday as well.