James and the Giant Peach ★★★★★

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Title: James and the Giant Peach
Authors: Roald Dahl
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Childrens Fiction
Pages: 131
Words: 26K

I don’t know what it was this time around, but this read was perfect in every sense of the word. It was amusing. It was appropriately macabre in the proper Dahl fashion (James’ aunts get squashed by the giant peach after all). It was silly. And it had a happy ending.

I doubt I’m ever going to re-read this again, and considering this was perfect this time around, I’m perfectly ok with leaving my memories of it in pristine condition. Sometimes when life is tough, you need a simple story where everything works out ok. That’s what this was for me this time around. I hand out a literal handful of 5stars each year, so when I do, you know I’m serious.

Sometimes life is hard. It can be messy and complicated and no path is the best one. As adults we all know this, have experienced it and we know we can’t shut our eyes and pretend it away. It doesn’t work that way. And we see what happens to people who do try to pretend it away. Drugs, drinking, excess in some form or another. But while I read this for the 60minutes it took, I could shut my eyes, take a breath, let it all slide from me and when I was done, head right back into the roles and responsibilities I have to deal with. This is why I read mainly fiction. It allows me to escape in a controlled manner. Let’s me catch my breath so I can keep on swimming.


41 thoughts on “James and the Giant Peach ★★★★★

  1. A great little book. My memory is that Dahl wrote it as a form of therapy – that it was as much an escape for him as it is for his readers. His son (an infant at the time) had been hit by a New York taxi cab shortly before and left with life-changing injuries.

    The other thing I remember about it is that the peach rolls over a chocolate factory on its way down to the sea. Foreshadowing or wha’?

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Huh, I had no idea. I didn’t even realize he had come to America.

      And I just looked at the publication dates, ’61 for James and ’64 for Charlie. I’d say that was foreshadowing indeed! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Well said about fiction. That’s why I read it too. Escapism but it girds me to re- enter the real world ha. Anyway, I loved this as a kid (they read it to us in school) but I hardly remember- I should revisit.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I would definitely be interested in what you think of it now since so many years have elapsed for you. I at least had the highschool read and again in my 30’s to revisit it.


    1. That is a bit disingenuous on their part, or more likely, pure idiocy. But I’m not going to argue them using you as proxy 😀 We will go round in circles, hahahaa.

      But it brings up a legit question, what is excess? If something is bad for you, then there is no “moderation” in my opinion in that. As for good stuff, I think when it ends up impacting other good areas of your life, then that can be called bad, or excess.
      That’s my off the cuff thoughts on the subject.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don´t think it´s disingenious: they do honestly think it´s extreme to read a lot. But idiocy seems about right, yes.

        Totally agree with your definition. Reading basically betters me, the only bad side effect I can think of is that it takes away some time with loved ones, like you say, impacting other good areas, but that´s all well within acceptable boarders, so no excess there, for me at least.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m glad your Dahl re-read (or read?) goes on and brings you happiness. I have been discovering his books over the last few years, and I’m quite appreciative of his skill and wit. These are some good books!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. At this point I’m pretty sure it is all re-reads, don’t think I’ve missed anything before 🙂

      What amazes me is how simple things are and yet they are not paper thin. The writing is just quality and I am appreciating that more and more.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. My memories of this book are tinged by the times I read it in. When I was a kid, there was a bout of drug dealers giving LSD to little kids – so our teachers, of course, educated us on why we shouldn’t except weird but cool looking things from strangers, telling us the LSD was a drug and it was bad and it made people see scary things that weren’t real.

    Then I read this book, and all I could think was “James took the LSD.” It’s stuck with me all these years and now I can’t see this story for thinking James had himself a bad trip (or a good one, I suppose, depending on your threshold). 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahahahahaahaha! That is great!
      I’m sorry you have that memory attached to the book but at the same time, that’s pretty funny 😀

      On the unfunny side, it really brings into focus the fact that kids are preyed upon in more ways than one. Glad your teachers said something….

      Liked by 1 person

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