Book Review: Matilda by Roald Dahl

#34 – “Matilda” by Roald Dahl


Genre: Children’s Fantasy, Classic

Page Numbers: 240 pages

Dates Read: 8/17/13-8/18/13

Plot in 3 lines or less: Matilda is a special girl, with special powers. Unfortunately, her family does everything they can to thwart her from learning and growing. When she finally does get the chance to go to school, she has to face The Trunchbull, who by far earns one of the top honors for WORST. TEACHER. EVER. So Matilda sets out to teach them all some much-needed lessons in some not-so-conventional ways.

New Read or Re-read? Re-read. I can’t remember the last time I read it, though.

Would you read it again? Would you recommend it to others? Yes, and yes. I would recommend all of Roald Dahl’s works in a heart-beat.

Was it easy to read? Yes. Again, these sorts of books are natural quick reads for me.

Can you relate to anything within the story? I relate to Matilda on way too many levels, I think because I grew up the victim of bullying, as so many people have been. Her parents bully her, her brother bullies her, The Trunchbull bullies all of the children, it is one great big story of standing up to the bullies, and has a great message to children – that they should not let the bullies win.

Favorite Character(s): Matilda, of course. Miss Honey is also a favorite, because I believe Mr. Dahl made sure to include an adult figure-head of some kind who is the complete opposite of everything that bullies tend to be – a kind, caring adult who listens to children and treats others with respect. I guess it was his way of reminding us that not everyone who is bigger than us is mean.

Favorite Line: I love it whenever Matilda starts talking about subjects that are beyond her. Some of my favorite quotes involve books, but that should not come as a surprise to anyone.

“The books transported her into new worlds and introduced her to amazing people who lived exciting lives.”

“I’m wondering what to read next.”

(That last one seems to be begging me for a header for the blog at some point, no?)

Is there anything about it that you did not like? No. Well, that’s not entirely true. I would LOVE to change it so that Matilda is a girl who had a loving family from the start and grew up in an environment that nurtured her special gifts and that she went to a school where she was able to advance and learn and grow and NEVER BE BULLIED, but I can’t change that.

Is there anything else you would like to add? I wanted to reread this one because of a song. Silly, you might think, but I read according to my whims. I was heading down to the beach a few weeks before reading this, and the song “Send Me On My Way” by Rusted Root showed up on the playlist whilst we were heading to the beach, and that brought up all kinds of memories of watching the Matilda movie that came out in the 90s, as that song plays during the opening and closing scenes of the movie. The song was played often enough during the day (no one objected) that it was almost as if I was compelled to pull out the book and read it. Since then, the song makes its way frequently into my daily playlists. Of course I don’t mind. 🙂

Also, in an unrelated note, this song also makes me want to get up and travel and explore. I went out and got myself a book to help me plan a bucket list item as a result of listening to this song frequently.

And for what it’s worth, I was SO desirous of taking in the story that about a week after this reading, I watched the movie again. I was pleasantly surprised at how much of the story was kept in the movie. I was glad for that.

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