“George didn’t say a word. He felt quite trembly. He knew something tremendous had taken place that morning. For a few brief moments he had touched with the very tips of his fingers the edge of a magic world.”
“Lukewarm is no good.” Right you are, Mr. Dahl. So when my boys were feeling unenthusiastic about not one, but two of our recent book selections, we had to retreat and turn up the heat. Luke and Jonah showed little to no interest in understanding why Noah Barleywater Runs Away. From the author of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, I assumed the boys would be drawn in. I myself was beguiled by the fact that Oliver Jeffers was the illustrator. But the boys opted to snooze rather than cruise through John Boyne’s pages.
Normally, I do my homework. I regret to inform you, however, that I’ve been dull. Not sure why I thought The One-in-a-Million Boy was for young ones. Should have known better when Luke, a precocious reader, was having trouble following along. I moved the book from their room to mine. Cue Roald Dahl to the rescue. We read the skinny but highly entertaining George’s Marvelous Medicine. What’s an eight-year-old boy to do with a “most horrid, grizzly old grunion of a grandma”? The hypersensitive reader might feel like exasperated young George is out of line…what with concocting a toxic, popping, steam-releasing, swelling, shrinking medicine to cure inexcusable crankiness in an old bag. The truth is this should be a hilarious, light-hearted read. Bless the gifted Brit who understood that reading should be fun and fabulous—splendiferous even.
p.s. Thanks also Roald for your bewitching Dahlisms!