The first novel I remember reading was Roald Dahl’s ‘George’s Marvellous Medicine’. I was obsessed with this book when I was a kid. Along with ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’, this story shaped my novel-loving mind.
I got the book free in a box of cereal. It was one of the prizes; I don’t know if they still do that, but it was honestly the greatest thing ever. I don’t have that copy anymore, I don’t know what happened to it. It was small and had a pink cover:
I read it so much that it was all tatty: pages coming away from the spine, bent corners, etc. I loved this book. It was an easy read that I could complete really fast. It’s such a good kids book.
When you think about it now, the plot is really dark. His Grandmother ‘bullies’ him when he stays with her as his parents run some errands, so he decides to recreate her medicine. He includes things like anti-freeze, animal medicine, floor polish and oil. That stuff would kill her. He basically plans to kill his Grandmother, directly or indirectly.
Roald Dahl seemed to always have dark tones to his children’s books. You don’t realise it when you’re a kid though, you’re too naive, but now you can see how dark they are. Matilda, for example, was abused by her parents and a teacher at school until she was taken in by Miss Honey. The ‘BFG’ contained giants who ate children. Willy Wonka had children being injured in his chocolate factory left, right and centre. All pretty messed up for children’s fiction.
What is your favourite Roald Dahl book?
Thanks for reading!