James and the Giant Peach
When James accidentally drops some magic crystals by the old peach tree, strange things start to happen. The peach at the top of the tree begins to grow, and before long it's as big as a house. When James discovers a secret entranceway into the fruit and crawls inside, he meets wonderful new friends--the Old-Green-Grasshopper, the dainty Ladybug, and the Centipede of the multiple boots. After years of feeling like an outsider in his aunts' house, James finally found a place where he belongs. With a snip of the stem, the peach household starts rolling away--and the adventure begins!Roald Dahl's first and most widely celebrated book for young people continues to thrill readers around the world."This is a stunning book to be cherished for its story, a superb fantasy."--Chicago Tribune"A beautifully written, fantastic book."--Christian Science Monitor

James and the Giant Peach Details

TitleJames and the Giant Peach
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseSep 10th, 2002
PublisherAlfred A. Knopf
ISBN-139780375814242
Rating
GenreChildrens, Fantasy, Fiction, Classics

James and the Giant Peach Review

  • Miranda Reads
    January 1, 1970
    A bad trip on the fun dip.From what I remember from the movie I saw during rainy-day recess in first grade, there's giant fruit, several oversized scary bugs and green glowy wormy things. It was so surreal and scary to me at the time that I've avoided the movie ever since.As I (finally) read the book, my scattered childhood memories fell into place. And my initial impression remains essentially the same: A really bad trip on the fun dip. “I'd rather be fried alive and eaten by Mexicans.” Hone A bad trip on the fun dip.From what I remember from the movie I saw during rainy-day recess in first grade, there's giant fruit, several oversized scary bugs and green glowy wormy things. It was so surreal and scary to me at the time that I've avoided the movie ever since.As I (finally) read the book, my scattered childhood memories fell into place. And my initial impression remains essentially the same: A really bad trip on the fun dip. “I'd rather be fried alive and eaten by Mexicans.” Honestly, what was Dahl on when he wrote this? James lives with two terrible old women whose main form of parenting is verbal abuse and infringement of child labor laws. A chance encounter with a slightly creepy and definitely odd (and quite frankly, suspiciously pedophilic if the quotes are taken out of context) old man leads to a new sort of adventure: Come right up close to me and I will show you something wonderful. James is gifted with a bag of pure magic. Only he manages to spoil his chance at happiness by spilling the bag...All is lost...or is it?Overnight, the sole peach on the peach tree begins to grow... and grow... and grow.James soon learns that within that gigantic peach are some extremely large and peculiar new friends. And soon, his drab and dreary world takes on a whole new light. We are now about to visit the most marvelous places and see the most wonderful things! When comparing the book to the vague memory of the movie, I am pleased to announce that the peach really was as large as I remembered, the bugs are actually delightfully charming and (at last) I know why the glowy green worms were so important. The book brought several details to my attention that I hadn't known before, such as the whimsical cloudmen and Dahl's explanation for how weather works. At times the book seemed to lose its direction but nonetheless, a thoroughly enjoyable read! Audiobook CommentsI absolutely love all of the Dahl audiobooks. So much fun, excitement and sound effects. Every detail comes so alive! Read by Julian Rhind-Tutt and lasting only 3.5 hours, this one is certainly a great listen.
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  • Bookdragon Sean
    January 1, 1970
    I read this so many times as a child and I was always so fiercely jealous of James. James is a dreamer. He has a boring life and one day he gets the opportunity to experience something weird and surreal. Everyday breaks away from mundanity and becomes something exciting and unusual. James makes friends with interesting insects and explores places he has never seen. A giant peach takes him there. His dreams become reality.This is certainly a story that could make any child (or adult too) fall in I read this so many times as a child and I was always so fiercely jealous of James. James is a dreamer. He has a boring life and one day he gets the opportunity to experience something weird and surreal. Everyday breaks away from mundanity and becomes something exciting and unusual. James makes friends with interesting insects and explores places he has never seen. A giant peach takes him there. His dreams become reality.This is certainly a story that could make any child (or adult too) fall in love with fantasy.
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  • Darth J
    January 1, 1970
    For a brief period in my childhood, I was obsessed with this. After seeing the trailer, I noticed that the movie trailer tie-in edition was available in the next month's book order form so I had to have it to read before I saw it.Then I saw the movie and of course, really loved it. It was whimsical and visually appealing, even if it did deviate from the source material in parts.I even remember wanting to only eat and drink peach stuff for a while, and since it was the 90's I had to have my Snapp For a brief period in my childhood, I was obsessed with this. After seeing the trailer, I noticed that the movie trailer tie-in edition was available in the next month's book order form so I had to have it to read before I saw it.Then I saw the movie and of course, really loved it. It was whimsical and visually appealing, even if it did deviate from the source material in parts.I even remember wanting to only eat and drink peach stuff for a while, and since it was the 90's I had to have my Snapple Peach Iced Tea.So that's it, just some warm nostalgia I will always have for this book.
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  • James
    January 1, 1970
    Book Review James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl is a very creative story built for everyone of all ages to enjoy. I think of it as a cross between 3 things: (1) Dr. Seuss, (2) Jack and the Beanstalk and (3) Harry Potter. 4 of 5 stars to this lovely keepsake!I had to read this book, when it's my namesake, James. But the similarities end there. James' parents have passed away and he lives with his awful aunt and uncle. A mysterious man gives him a package which helps him grow this giant pea Book Review James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl is a very creative story built for everyone of all ages to enjoy. I think of it as a cross between 3 things: (1) Dr. Seuss, (2) Jack and the Beanstalk and (3) Harry Potter. 4 of 5 stars to this lovely keepsake!I had to read this book, when it's my namesake, James. But the similarities end there. James' parents have passed away and he lives with his awful aunt and uncle. A mysterious man gives him a package which helps him grow this giant peach. And then the peach turns into a house, rolls away into fantasy-land and brings tons of new cartoon characters for James to have his own family. It's a great children's story / younger young adult story to help show the different types of family, love and support one can get. So many fun things come from here, it's a must read for all kids. My favorite character would probably be the ladybug... such a treasure in words and pictures. About Me For those new to me or my reviews... here's the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you'll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I've visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.[polldaddy poll=9729544][polldaddy poll=9719251]
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  • Muna
    January 1, 1970
    When I was in third grade, the first great crush of my life, Scott Murphy, stood up on the picnic table outside of the trailer that housed my third grade class and instead of reading his lines -- James' words -- from his paperback copy while we were all trying to rehearse the chapter we were supposed to present to the entire class the next day, he performed the most passionate version of "Paradise City" by Guns N Roses that I have ever seen.To this day, I love Gun N Roses, I love Scott Murphy, a When I was in third grade, the first great crush of my life, Scott Murphy, stood up on the picnic table outside of the trailer that housed my third grade class and instead of reading his lines -- James' words -- from his paperback copy while we were all trying to rehearse the chapter we were supposed to present to the entire class the next day, he performed the most passionate version of "Paradise City" by Guns N Roses that I have ever seen.To this day, I love Gun N Roses, I love Scott Murphy, and I love this book. Magical.
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  • Michael Finocchiaro
    January 1, 1970
    As always, Roald Dahl spins the most fantastic wonderful tales for children and James and the Giant Peach is up there with his greatest ones. It is also a wonderful animated film. Don't deprive your children of fantastic stories such as this one - there are one in a million!
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  • Lynda
    January 1, 1970
    James and the Giant Peach - B A N N E D!Recently I joined the Banned Books group and one of the group reads for this month was James and the Giant Peach. I'm sure there are many GR readers who have read a Roald Dahl book and/or seen a movie adaptation of one of his books. If you have, then you would know that Dahl has consistently written stories that entertain children with morals and life lessons that even adults can appreciate. So why was this book banned? Let's first take a look at what Jame James and the Giant Peach - B A N N E D!Recently I joined the Banned Books group and one of the group reads for this month was James and the Giant Peach. I'm sure there are many GR readers who have read a Roald Dahl book and/or seen a movie adaptation of one of his books. If you have, then you would know that Dahl has consistently written stories that entertain children with morals and life lessons that even adults can appreciate. So why was this book banned? Let's first take a look at what James and the Giant Peach is about...The storyThis is a story about a boy named James Henry Trotter who is forced to live with his two abusive aunts (Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker) in the English countryside after his parents are tragically killed from a rhinoceros attack in London. James is a very sad and miserable little boy. One day, a mysterious old man presents James with a bag of tiny green crystals that have magical powers. James is told that once he swallows the crystals with water, marvellous, fabulous and unbelievable things will happen to him, and he'll never be miserable again. James rushes back to the house to get some water and accidentally falls and spills the tiny green crystals near a dormant peach tree which sits on a hill nearby. The lifeless tree suddenly sprouts a peach, which begins to grow larger and larger.His abusive aunts take notice of the giant peach. They fence it off and begin charging people money to see it. And after locking up James all day, the aunts force him to clean up after the crowds are gone. It is while James is cleaning up around the giant peach that he discovers a tunnel leading to the middle of it. There, he finds a group of human-sized insects: Centipede, Grasshopper, Spider, Earthworm, Ladybird, Silkworm, and Glow-worm. The group befriends James and attribute their giant growth to having eaten the tiny green crystals that James had spilled. Early the next day, the group decides to escape the horrible aunts by cutting the stem connecting the peach to the tree. The giant peach begins to roll down the hillside, flattening and killing James' two aunts in the process.The giant peach rolls faster and faster through towns, across land until finally it crashes into the ocean. To avoid a group of vicious sharks, James attaches strings (produced by the spider and silkworm) to hundreds of seagulls and the peach is lifted and carried in the air.As they are floating, they come across some Cloud-Men, mystic creatures who are responsible for the different types of weather, like rain, snow, and hail. And as they are drifting through the clouds, the peach crashes into a rainbow, which snaps some of the strings, and the peach begins to descend. As the peach approaches land, it crashes on top of the Empire State Building. In the end, (view spoiler)[all of the insects become successful in America, and James, who has made a lot of friends, lives in the large peach pip in Central Park. (hide spoiler)]Key themesThis story urges readers to take a closer look at the world around them. First, a closer look at nature. There are several amazing things happening in the natural world, from photosynthesis to the water cycle. The book even explores the importance of each type of insect and how each of them contributes to the well-being of the environment.But this idea of looking closer at the world also applies to looking at other people and how we should take the time to talk to them to get to know them. In doing so, we can find out how they contribute to the rest of us since everyone contributes to the world.On a more hopeful note, the underlying message of this story is that there are ways to escape a troubling homelife. The verbal and emotional abuse James receives is a bit over-the-top, but that might be the reality for some kids. How do they escape that? And while they can't fly away on a giant peach, ultimately, this story suggests that abused kids can find possible escapes through friends and writing. That the power of relationships and creativity and imagination are all a person needs to take them anywhere they want to go i.e. it shows kids that no matter how bad things may seem, or how bad they get, there is always hope.So why was James and the Giant Peach banned?It was banned as being too scary for the targeted age group, mysticism, sexual inferences, profanity, racism, references to tobacco and alcohol, and claims that it promotes disobedience, drugs, and communism.A challenge was brought before the school council in Indian River County, Florida, because of the story’s mystical elements involving magic crocodile tongues which enchanted the peach tree.The Times of London reported that it was once banned in a Wisconsin town because a reference to a spider licking her lips could be “taken in two ways, including sexual.”That Times statement conjured up this image!! haha :)) Other challenges involve repeated use of the word “ass,” which resulted in a 1991 challenge in Altoona, Wisconsin. The following year, a woman in Hernando County, Florida, took issue with Grasshopper’s statement “I’d rather be fried alive and eaten by a Mexican!” as well as references to snuff, tobacco and whiskey. Her complaints to her 10-year-old daughter’s school principal led to a review by the regional school board.In a blog by Madeline Holler, she took issue not with the language or drugs, but jokes about physical characteristics because of the physical description of James’ cruel guardians Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker. One is very fat and one is very skinny and their features are laughed at, criticized, and meant to be evoke disgust.ConclusionBook challenges and banning is proof to the power of good literature, creative language, and original imagery. While some might have issues with certain realities of the world that children are growing up in; and as troubled as it makes adults to be reminded of these facts as they attempt to shield their children from harm, children’s literature is a great way for them to get a glimpse at the issues that they WILL have to deal with some day.I can’t think of a single book from my childhood that distorted my morality or sense of self. I was also lucky enough to have parents who didn’t shield me from the darker aspects of life. If I had an issue or question, it was talked about openly and honestly.
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  • Ahmad Sharabiani
    January 1, 1970
    James and the Giant Peach, Roald Dahl عنوانها: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ جیمز و هلوی سحرآمیز؛ هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ انتشاراتیها: سازمان تبلیغات، ژرف نگر؛ نوید شیراز، نشر مرکز، کاروان، افق، کارگاه سپاس، سایه بان هنر، تاریخ نخستین خوانش: بیست و هفتم دسامبر سال 1997 میلادی؛ عنوان: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: مژگان شیخی؛ تهران، سازمان تبلیغات، 1375، در 133 ص، مصور، 9644713117؛عنوان: جیمز و هلوی سحرآمیز؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: گروه مترجمین؛ تهران، ژرف نگر، 1379، در 150 James and the Giant Peach, Roald Dahl عنوانها: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ جیمز و هلوی سحرآمیز؛ هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ انتشاراتیها: سازمان تبلیغات، ژرف نگر؛ نوید شیراز، نشر مرکز، کاروان، افق، کارگاه سپاس، سایه بان هنر، تاریخ نخستین خوانش: بیست و هفتم دسامبر سال 1997 میلادی؛ عنوان: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: مژگان شیخی؛ تهران، سازمان تبلیغات، 1375، در 133 ص، مصور، 9644713117؛عنوان: جیمز و هلوی سحرآمیز؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: گروه مترجمین؛ تهران، ژرف نگر، 1379، در 150 ص، 9649279016؛عنوان: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: سرور قاسمی؛ شیراز، نوید شیراز، 1381، در 112 ص، مصور، 9643580350؛عنوان: هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: ساغر صادقیان؛ تهران، نشر مرکز مریم، 1382، در 131 ص، مصور، 9643057038؛عنوان: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: گیتا گرکانی؛ تهران، کاروان، 1385، در 196 ص، مصور، ایکس - 964849746؛عنوان: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: محبوبه نجف خانی؛ تهران، نشر افق، 1390، در 245 ص، مصور، 9789643696641؛عنوان: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: علی هداوند؛ تهران، کارگاه سپاس، 1392، در 176 ص، 9786006767314؛عنوان: جیمز و هلوی غول پیکر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: ندا ترابی؛ تهران، سایه بان هنر، 1393، در 170 ص، 9786009380626؛کتابی انتقادی ست؛ جیمز هنری تروتر، پسری چهار ساله و معمولی ست، و زندگی خیلی خوبی دارد، اما ناگهان یتیم می‌شود، برای این که یک کرگدن که از باغ وحش لندن فرار کرده، و با اینکه کرگدنها گیاهخوار هستند، ناگهان پدر و مادرش را می‌خورد. برای همین او مجبور می‌شود با دو عمه اش: سپایکر و سپونژ زندگی کند؛ عمه ها همیشه او را آزار و شکنجه می‌دهند. سه سال بعد، موقعی که جیمز دارد در جنگل هیزم میشکند، با مرد غریبه‌ ای ملاقات می‌کند، که از بدبختی‌های جیمز خبر دارد. غریبه به او کیسه ی کوچکی از عناصر مورد نیاز، برای ساختن یک معجون جادویی می‌دهد؛ که با خوردن آن‌ها جیمز به: ثروت، خوشبختی و ماجراهای جالب می‌رسد. اما کیسه از دست جیمز میافتد، و بلورهای سبز درون آن در زمین محو می‌شوند. اما بعد یک درخت هلو در آنجا سبز می‌شود؛ و هلوی عظیمی در آنجا میروید. عمه‌ ها قصد دارند با نمایش دادن هلو، پولی به جیب بزنند. اما یک شب، جیمز از سوراخی در هلو، به داخل می‌رود؛ و با چند جاندار مثل: هزارپا؛ ملخ؛ کفشدوزک؛ و کرم ابریشم ملاقات می‌کند که همقد و اندازه ی او هستند. سپس هلو با کمک هزارپا، از درخت جدا می‌شود؛ و در اقیانوس اطلس میافتد. یاران سوار بر هلو عازم نیویورک می‌شوند؛ تا زندگی تازه‌ ای را شروع کنند و ماجراهای شگفت انگیزی را از سر می‌گذرانند. ا. شربیانی
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  • Leo .
    January 1, 1970
    This story both fascinated and scared me when I was a child. 👍🐯
  • Hannah Greendale
    January 1, 1970
    Click here to watch a video review of this book on my channel, From Beginning to Bookend. James Henry Trotter is forced to live with his dreadful Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker after his beloved parents are killed in a tragic incident with a rhinoceros. There's no place as dreary and lonely as the house atop the hill where he lives with his aunts. James suspects his bad luck will change after a mysterious man arrives and offers him a bag of magic crystals. The way in which the crystals alter his ci Click here to watch a video review of this book on my channel, From Beginning to Bookend. James Henry Trotter is forced to live with his dreadful Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker after his beloved parents are killed in a tragic incident with a rhinoceros. There's no place as dreary and lonely as the house atop the hill where he lives with his aunts. James suspects his bad luck will change after a mysterious man arrives and offers him a bag of magic crystals. The way in which the crystals alter his circumstances is more fantastical than anything he could have ever imagined. James and the Giant is undeniably macabre. Dahl never shies away from infusing his stories with ghastly elements. Their names were Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spider, and I am sorry to say that they were both really horrible people. They were selfish and lazy and cruel, and right from the beginning they started beating poor James for almost no reason at all. They never called him by his real name, but always referred to him as "you disgusting little beast" or "you filthy nuisance" or "you miserable creature," and they certainly never game him any toys to play with or any picture books to look at. Given the title of the book, it's no secret that James encounters a giant peach, but this is no ordinary piece of fruit. Dahl makes it sound like the most delectable peach imaginable: The skin of the peach was very beautiful - a rich buttery yellow with patches of brilliant pink and red. And all around there was the curious bittersweet smell of fresh peach. The floor was soggy under his knees, the walls were wet and sticky, and peach juice was dripping from the ceiling. James opened his mouth and caught some of it on his tongue. It tasted delicious. James' adventure is brimming with magic and just a pinch of adult humor. "And there's a - there's a - there's a - a - a - a sort of giant ladybug!" "Now just a minute, Captain!" the First Officer said. "And a colossal green grasshopper!" "Captain!" the First Officer said sharply. "Captain, please!" "And a mammoth spider!" "Oh dear, he's been at the whisky again," whispered the Second Officer. Sail away on a giant peach in this delightful story of a boy finding friends in unusual ways and in astonishing places.
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  • Mariah
    January 1, 1970
    2017 is the year of reading Roald Dahl for me! I'm trying to read all his books that I can get my hands on plus reread all the books I've previously read of his :)When I read this book a very long time ago I rated in 3 stars. I think as an adult I enjoyed reading this book more than I did as a child. James accidentally drops some magic crystals by an old peach tree. This causes the peach at the top of the tree to grow huge!! James enters the fruit and meets some new friends: a grasshopper, Ladyb 2017 is the year of reading Roald Dahl for me! I'm trying to read all his books that I can get my hands on plus reread all the books I've previously read of his :)When I read this book a very long time ago I rated in 3 stars. I think as an adult I enjoyed reading this book more than I did as a child. James accidentally drops some magic crystals by an old peach tree. This causes the peach at the top of the tree to grow huge!! James enters the fruit and meets some new friends: a grasshopper, Ladybug, and a Centipede. The peach rolls away from its tree and the adventure began!
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  • Matt
    January 1, 1970
    I have always been taught to start at the beginning, which seemed like sage advice when I wanted to explore some of the children's stories that Roald Dahl crafted over his long and illustrious career. Choosing this work, apparently his first stab at children's literature, proved highly entertaining and a wonderful way to spend a few hours. After an accident claims the life of his parents, young James Henry Trotter is sent to live with his wicked aunts, facing a period of miserable adjustment. Wh I have always been taught to start at the beginning, which seemed like sage advice when I wanted to explore some of the children's stories that Roald Dahl crafted over his long and illustrious career. Choosing this work, apparently his first stab at children's literature, proved highly entertaining and a wonderful way to spend a few hours. After an accident claims the life of his parents, young James Henry Trotter is sent to live with his wicked aunts, facing a period of miserable adjustment. While out one day, he encounters a man who offers him a sack of magical beans that will, so the tale goes, react marvellously with the first living thing they encounter. James brings them home and while outside, the beans escape at the base of an old peach tree that has not shown any signs of life for many years. James witnesses a peach growing larger than anything he has ever seen in all his years and soon approaches it. He discovers a number of other creatures that have reacted with the beans, including a grasshopper, an earthworm, and a ladybug. Crawling inside a hole within this peach, James escapes the confines of his yard and sets about on an adventure with his new-found friends. Rolling through town, they eventually make their way to the open waters and find themselves marooned in the middle of the Atlantic. James and his 'pesty' friends use their wherewithal and conquer numerous enemies as they tackle a number adventures before them. James, in turn, learns the importance of new and exciting friendships, leaving some of the sorrow of his past behind him. Dahl at his best, proves how he became a household name amongst children's authors.As part of my 2017 reading goals, I thought I would pave the way and return to reading some of the classic books from my youth, in hopes of introducing them to my son in the coming years. Dahl has a way of telling a great story that will appease the young reader while also instilling great values and ideals into their little minds, sure to please parents and other adults. The stories have a degree of silliness, but also adventure and excitement, allowing the reader's interest to be piqued to forge onwards a little more. While some books out there seek to create a spark amongst children by addressing modern characters and technologies, Dahl's ideas and presentation are timeless, which I would venture to say might spurn children whose attention span has been whittled down by games and electronics to turn to these stories and take a moment to absorb all that is going on from chapter to chapter. Timeless classics are hard to discover in this fast-paced world, but Dahl has left these stories as breadcrumbs to discovering the wonders of early reading.Kudos, Mr. Dahl for introducing me to reading and the love of books. I hope to bring another generation of readers up to see the wonders of your storytelling abilities.Like/hate the review? An ever-growing collection of others appears at: http://pecheyponderings.wordpress.com/
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  • Ammara Abid
    January 1, 1970
  • Patrick
    January 1, 1970
    I'm going to be completely honest here. I didn't like this book. Usually, if I don't care for a book, I keep schtum about it here. Not only is it not as much fun to talk about books I didn't like, but bad-mouthing other author's books is pretty rude. But, given that Dahl has passed on, and a fair number of people ask me for book recommendations for their kids. I figured I'd chime in with my opinion about this one. I recently read it with my son, and while it wasn't *awful,* it was just... Meh. I I'm going to be completely honest here. I didn't like this book. Usually, if I don't care for a book, I keep schtum about it here. Not only is it not as much fun to talk about books I didn't like, but bad-mouthing other author's books is pretty rude. But, given that Dahl has passed on, and a fair number of people ask me for book recommendations for their kids. I figured I'd chime in with my opinion about this one. I recently read it with my son, and while it wasn't *awful,* it was just... Meh. It was just a series of vaguely interesting events loosely connected by not much of anything. And no. It's not a Picaresque. You know what a picaresque is. And if you do, it doesn't matter because that's not an excuse for a meh book with no narrative through line. So don't bring that weak shit around here. Here's the thing, before this book, I read Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to my boy. *That* was an interesting book. Charlie was in a bad place. He was a sympathetic character. He *wanted* something for himself. He strove for it. And when he got it, we, the readers, were delighted. James... not so much. In Charlie and the Chocolate factory, each of the rooms was kind of cool and interesting. People talked *about* things. IN this book, about 60% most of the dialogue was just four different people exclaiming about the same thing. Or they'd bicker pointlessly about the same things. There were some notable exceptions, but for the most part it was purposeless, and tedious to read. Honestly, I skipped pieces of it. And my son, who has read the book before with his mother, didn't notice. (Because he *will* call me out on stuff like that.) Now could a child enjoy reading this book on their own? Absolutely. Some of the language will be a a little opaque for a young reader, but I think that's good. That stretches your mind and builds vocabulary. But as a book you're thinking of reading to a kid? I'd pass. There are so many other better options out there. Books with more engaging characters and more compelling stories....
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  • midnightfaerie
    January 1, 1970
    I read James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl with my five year old. We had just finished Charlotte's Web and I was looking for chapter books I could enjoy as well. And I knew we had the movie so we could watch it when we were done. It turned out to be a great choice. Dahl uses the cliffhanger method at the end of almost every one of his chapters, and each chapter is only a page or two long. That combined with great illustrations, made for a win-win situation. I often ended a chapter only to ha I read James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl with my five year old. We had just finished Charlotte's Web and I was looking for chapter books I could enjoy as well. And I knew we had the movie so we could watch it when we were done. It turned out to be a great choice. Dahl uses the cliffhanger method at the end of almost every one of his chapters, and each chapter is only a page or two long. That combined with great illustrations, made for a win-win situation. I often ended a chapter only to have my son beg for another. This is a good sign, and something he didn't do with Charlotte's Web, even though he enjoyed it too. I also picked it because it was something I had never read. Turns out it was the perfect selection all around. Only took us a few weeks to read it and it was highly enjoyable. The characters come alive in a way other stories about bugs never did for me. I actually found myself sympathizing with the earthworm. The imagination and magic factor held me the whole time, and my son and I often discussed what would happen next. Some of our ideas were so far out there, but we laughed, knowing it was highly possible, even probable that they could very well be true. Dahl's penchant for silliness and the unexpected made our guesses that much more realistic. The vocabulary was perfect, just enough to keep me from being bored, but easy enough for my son to understand, and we both learned new words! His was peach stone, another name for a peach pit. Mine was steeplejacks, and no, I won't tell you what it is, you have to look it up. Dahl's writing is fantastic, and I had great fun making up tunes to his songs throughout the book. The book definitely has the longevity factor going for it, and children can appreciate the many themes of friendship and loyalty for the duration the book. So in these regards I think it can be considered a classic. The only complaint that some may have about this book is that he uses the word "ass" a few times in it, and even though I was told about it, I was still surprised when I stumbled over their use. Because I was reading this to my son, it wasn't a problem, I just substituted a word for it or skipped over it. If a child is reading the book on their own, well, I'm a big believer that if the adult cares so much, they should be reading the books first and then discussing it with their kids. Much of the great literature that's out there has ideas that are taboo in polite circles or are difficult concepts to explain when looking at human history. But that's what makes them great. And it's much better to educate your child, and do it yourself, before they get misconstrued opinions from the world at large or other teachers. I remember many teachers I had that pushed their opinions, good and bad on students when reading literature. That's a parent's responsibility. As for this book, it was excellent. And I highly recommend it for your first chapter books for your child. Now for the movie. I was excited because this was the first time my son had read a book and seen the movie afterward. It was funny to see how disappointed he was. That sounds bad. What I mean is, he enjoyed it and we had a fun "popcorn night" that is one of his favorite things, but his favorite part of the movie was the part about the sharks. He was like, "There wasn't a robot shark in the book! Where are the real sharks? And what happened to the cloud men?" I laughed. I told him it often happens that the movie is nothing like the book and then asked which he liked better. He vehemently exclaimed "The book!" Which, of course, was the whole objective. Lesson learned. ClassicsDefined.com
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  • Amy Talluto
    January 1, 1970
    A funny, dark and poetic book. I read this after seeing a documentary about Roald Dahls' life and hearing some of the book's passages narrated within the perspective of his time cramped up in a WWII bomber plane as a bombardier (he was very tall). The peach represents the polar opposite of being in a noisy and clattering war plane, manning a gun and always under the threat of death. The peach is a peaceful, sweet and quiet flying machine.
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  • Fatima
    January 1, 1970
    ابتدای داستان خیلی خیلی شبیه داستان سیندرلا هست منتها شخصیت اصلی داستان اینجا پسر و زیر دست عمه های بدجنسش زندگی میکند و ... پایان شیرینش و شخصیت هایی از حشرات غول آسای مهربان که در کنار جیمز یاریش میکردند و یک عدد هلوی خوشمزه ی واقعا بزرگ ، دلگرمی خوبی برای فرزندی که کتاب رو برایش میخوانیم هست و حتما داستان را دوست خواهد داشت ، البته کودک درون من هم این داستان رو خیلی دوست داشت به طوری که فیلمش رو هم دانلود کرده و دیدم و اون هم جالب و دوستداشتنی بود ...
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  • aPriL does feral sometimes
    January 1, 1970
    James Henry Trotter is a sweetie, and I absolutely adore this kid and his garden-friendly insect friends. The illustrations are so cute.After enduring abusive aunts for three years who despise James after they agreed to raise him from the age of four when his parents died, James meets a mysterious man in the garden who gives him a bag of magical rice-sized crystals. He spills the crystals accidentally near his aunts' sad peach tree losing every one. It's a catastrophe for James, who was hoping f James Henry Trotter is a sweetie, and I absolutely adore this kid and his garden-friendly insect friends. The illustrations are so cute.After enduring abusive aunts for three years who despise James after they agreed to raise him from the age of four when his parents died, James meets a mysterious man in the garden who gives him a bag of magical rice-sized crystals. He spills the crystals accidentally near his aunts' sad peach tree losing every one. It's a catastrophe for James, who was hoping for something wonderful he could use. James has hit bottom.The next day, there is a giant peach growing on the tree! True to their vicious natures, the aunts start a business of charging tourists to see the peach but they lock up James in his room all day so he can't speak to anyone. At night they release him from his room and order him to clean up the trash in the garden. He is so hungry from not being fed all day that he climbs into the peach to eat a bit. He discovers there is a tunnel into it! Crawling down the tunnel he discovers the huge peach pit - and the most adorable group of magically transformed bugs that anyone would be pleased to meet. Best of all, they love James. But this is not the end of the story. Meeting the insects is the beginning of new adventures and a new life, as they escape the evil aunts by rolling the peach away from the aunts' hilltop house. It isn't as easy as the reader might expect. They face trials and terrors in their escape which could mean their deaths. Even magically transformed beings can die! Will the friends work together and save each other by their individual strengths?Unlike many, I never read this when a child, or had it read to me. I'm very happy that I read it now. It is one of the most charming stories for young kids I've ever read. It completely recognizes the challenges of life and offers lessons of hope, perseverance, courage, friendship, inventive use of resources and imagination, while recognizing grief and child abuse. Kids will either ask you questions (most won't I suspect; they will take in the story the way they take in Little Red Riding Hood or Hansel and Gretel, unless you get uncomfortable or upset) that you can answer age-appropriately, or they will simply enjoy feeling safe and loved while you read to them. I recommend 'James and the Giant Peach' to anyone and everyone.
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  • mark monday
    January 1, 1970
    used to dream of being James. had my special favorites amongst all the talking insects, but really they were all my favorites. also used to look at animal encyclopedias and write lists of my favorite animals. then I'd imagine going on an Incredible Journey with them. animals are so much better than people!
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  • Marnie Krüger
    January 1, 1970
    I love how Roald Dahl can transport you; can make your imagination come alive.He makes you feel like a kid again!I've read a lot of his work as a child, but never this one. SO it was my first time. And I loved it.
  • lydia
    January 1, 1970
    “'My dear young fellow,' the Old-Green-Grasshopper said gently, 'there are a whole lot of things in this world of ours you haven't started wondering about yet.'”*4.5 starsQuite creepy, quite funny, quite whimsical and cute, James and The Giant Peach might not be as good as Matilda or as magical as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but Roald Dahl, master storyteller, never disappoints. James Henry Trotter is about to embark on the adventure of his lifetime, when a giant peach starts growing in “'My dear young fellow,' the Old-Green-Grasshopper said gently, 'there are a whole lot of things in this world of ours you haven't started wondering about yet.'”*4.5 starsQuite creepy, quite funny, quite whimsical and cute, James and The Giant Peach might not be as good as Matilda or as magical as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but Roald Dahl, master storyteller, never disappoints. James Henry Trotter is about to embark on the adventure of his lifetime, when a giant peach starts growing in his horrible aunts’ garden. But the peach is not the only thing with unnatural dimensions in this story; grasshoppers and ladybirds, a talkative centipede and a pessimistic earthworm, are amongst James’ bizarre fellow adventurers. I wish I had read this when younger, then maybe I would like insects a bit more.
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  • Noel
    January 1, 1970
    For some ridiculous reason, I never read any Roald Dahl when I was a kid. So now that my kids are at ages where they can enjoy his books, I’m super excited to be reading these with them. My oldest (6), loved this book. She’s declared it to be the best book ever. I also really enjoyed it, and would have read it myself even if I didn’t have kids. My four year old however was indifferent, she’s mostly excited to watch the movie. 😅The only issue I had with the book is that Dahl uses the word ass in For some ridiculous reason, I never read any Roald Dahl when I was a kid. So now that my kids are at ages where they can enjoy his books, I’m super excited to be reading these with them. My oldest (6), loved this book. She’s declared it to be the best book ever. I also really enjoyed it, and would have read it myself even if I didn’t have kids. My four year old however was indifferent, she’s mostly excited to watch the movie. 😅The only issue I had with the book is that Dahl uses the word ass in it like five times. Which is obviously not an issue if you’re an adult, but I had to censor it out for the kids. Not really a big deal though, I was just surprised.
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  • Sara Kamjou
    January 1, 1970
    خوب بود دنیای جالبی داشت اما از اونجایی که شباهتاش به چارلی و آسانسور شیشهای خیلی زیاد بود یه جاهایی تکراری بود روندش. به هر در مل لذتبخش بود.-----------------------------------بخشهای ماندگار کتاب:شاید ما غرق نمیشدیم! شاید هم آنقدر ترسیده بودیم که فکر میکردیم داریم غرق میشویم....در تمام این دنیای ما چیزهای زیادی هست که تو هنوز به آنها فکر نکردهای. خوب بود دنیای جالبی داشت اما از اونجایی که شباهتاش به چارلی و آسانسور شیشه‌ای خیلی زیاد بود یه جاهایی تکراری بود روندش. به هر در مل لذتبخش بود.-----------------------------------بخش‌های ماندگار کتاب:شاید ما غرق نمی‌شدیم! شاید هم آن‌قدر ترسیده بودیم که فکر می‌کردیم داریم غرق می‌شویم....در تمام این دنیای ما چیزهای زیادی هست که تو هنوز به آن‌ها فکر نکرده‌ای.
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  • Meli
    January 1, 1970
    Muy tierno y entretenido.No es lo mejor de Roald, pero sí una excelente aventura.
  • Jeanette
    January 1, 1970
    I've never visited Central Park, but if I ever do, I'll be watching for the giant peach pit where James Henry Trotter settled happily after his wild excursion. I knew I liked this book as a kid but I couldn't remember the details of the story. The thing that stayed in my mind all these years was the feeling of claustrophobia when James makes his way inside the peach and finds all the giant, friendly creepy-crawlies inside the peach pit. As a kid you always place yourself within the story, and I I've never visited Central Park, but if I ever do, I'll be watching for the giant peach pit where James Henry Trotter settled happily after his wild excursion. I knew I liked this book as a kid but I couldn't remember the details of the story. The thing that stayed in my mind all these years was the feeling of claustrophobia when James makes his way inside the peach and finds all the giant, friendly creepy-crawlies inside the peach pit. As a kid you always place yourself within the story, and I remember thinking how I'd hate to be in that enclosed space with all those critters and no windows. There was no fear of Old-Green-Grasshopper or Centipede or Earthworm or any of the others, just the feeling that if I were James I'd want OUT of that peach pit and into the fresh air. Reading it again as an adult, my strongest impressions are of just how much FUN this whole adventure is. Roald Dahl manages the perfect blend of whimsical, frightful, exciting, and tender elements. I think that's why his books can be every bit as appealing to adults as they are to children. I'd be laughing one minute at Centipede's songs about Aunts Sponge and Spiker, and grossing out a few minutes later when Centipede tells Earthworm that the Cloud-Men will eat him: "They would cut you up like a salami and eat you in thin slices." There's just so much to delight the reader in this first of Roald Dahl's books for children. There are the Cloud-Men who make the weather, the quirky and fractious creatures who share James's journey, the rainbow paint (LOVE the purple rainbow paint on the Centipede!), and of course the strange little man with the bristly black whiskers who gets the whole thing rolling with the "little green things." "Where do they come from?" James wants to know. "Crocodile tongues! One thousand long slimy crocodile tongues boiled up in the skull of a dead witch for twenty days and nights with the eyeballs of a lizard! Add the fingers of a young monkey, the gizzard of a pig, the beak of a green parrot, the juice of a porcupine, and three spoonfuls of sugar. Stew for another week, and then let the moon do the rest!"Ah, Roald Dahl....You can still make my heart go pitter-pat with passages like that.
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  • Trish
    January 1, 1970
    I can't seem to stop reading books by Roald Dahl! :DThis time it's about a boy whose parents die so he has to live with two aunts, who are terrible people. They constantly mistreat him and keep him from meeting other children. Just one small note here: Why are the bad people in Roald Dahl's stories always either enormously fat or very long and thin?! It's a constant throughout his stories and I wonder if there is a special reason that can be found in his life's story?!Another note here: A boy lo I can't seem to stop reading books by Roald Dahl! :DThis time it's about a boy whose parents die so he has to live with two aunts, who are terrible people. They constantly mistreat him and keep him from meeting other children. Just one small note here: Why are the bad people in Roald Dahl's stories always either enormously fat or very long and thin?! It's a constant throughout his stories and I wonder if there is a special reason that can be found in his life's story?!Another note here: A boy losing his parents having to live with ghastly relatives and his name is James Henry Trotter ... am I reading too much into this?!Anyway, one day there is sort of a miracle, making a peach on a tree in his aunts' garden grow (and to an enormous size too). Inside, James meets a lot of insects and soon they go on a trip together. Yes, this book basically is a giant road trip story.Again, the author demonstrates his huge ability to come up with the most fantastic events, funny rhymes and songs and he invented quite some marvellous creatures in this book. The one star I deducted, by the way, was because I didn't like (view spoiler)[that the sharks were made out to be the bad guys (hide spoiler)] since this teaches children reading the book a lie that has been spread for a long time, causing a lot of damage! Moreover, I also don't agree with the author that (view spoiler)[the Cloud Man were bad or malicious - after all, it was the Centipede who started the trouble and then they shattered a beautiful rainbow, which would have caused me, too, to go after them! (hide spoiler)]At first I was also a bit irritated that at the slightest inconvenience everyone was proclaiming THE END and started panicking but at the end of the story I started thinking ... What if THAT was the whole purpose of the story? I mean, whenever the creatures on/in the peach were panicking (view spoiler)[James found a solution by staying calm and thinking (hide spoiler)] and in the end when (view spoiler)[the companions had arrived in New York City, everybody there was panicking for no actual reason but a nice little talk (again, calm and civil) solved the problem. (hide spoiler)]So maybe the moral here is that staying calm and using your head while keeping as cool as you can is the better way?! If so, it is marvellous.Oh, before I forget: yes, this book has Quentin Blake's cute illustrations again. And yes, they are as pretty as ever (FYI: mine are black and white, which I believe was their original form).
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  • Joey Woolfardis
    January 1, 1970
    Read as part of The Infinite Variety Reading Challenge, based on the BBC's Big Read Poll of 2003.The only way to describe this book is "fun". Yeah, it's got whimsy and adventure and imagination and some very Dahlian deaths and the Horrible People with their Horrible Traits, but it's not got that kind of wonderful spirit that some his other books have.Whilst I'd never say that adults should not read children's books, I personally haven't been getting the same amount of enjoyment from these books Read as part of The Infinite Variety Reading Challenge, based on the BBC's Big Read Poll of 2003.The only way to describe this book is "fun". Yeah, it's got whimsy and adventure and imagination and some very Dahlian deaths and the Horrible People with their Horrible Traits, but it's not got that kind of wonderful spirit that some his other books have.Whilst I'd never say that adults should not read children's books, I personally haven't been getting the same amount of enjoyment from these books as I usually do from books that are written for kids. I think with a lot of these books it's the reputation of the author and his more successful books that holds them up.Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Pinterest | Shop | Etsy
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  • Ricquetta
    January 1, 1970
    I remember when this book was read to me by my fifth grade teacher during our daily story time hour. I also remember hating that teacher because he played favorites to a group of girls that bullied me. However, despite my obvious distaste for the class and its inhabitants, I largely attribute that particular teacher for reading out to me some of my most favourite children's books; this particular Roald Dahl was one of them. In all honesty before re-reading this after some 14 years, the only part I remember when this book was read to me by my fifth grade teacher during our daily story time hour. I also remember hating that teacher because he played favorites to a group of girls that bullied me. However, despite my obvious distaste for the class and its inhabitants, I largely attribute that particular teacher for reading out to me some of my most favourite children's books; this particular Roald Dahl was one of them. In all honesty before re-reading this after some 14 years, the only part of the entire book that I remembered distinctly was the bit with the old man and the word "peculiar" repeated several times (it was the word we had to remember for a test in the class, I believe). So re-reading this was like a new experience, which was just completely exciting for me!This was such a short, sweet and lovely little book filled with all the classic kid lit tropes, which made it utterly enjoyable and as whimsical and delicious as the peach described in the book! I highly recommend it and I can gladly say that after fourteen years it still remains a favourite.
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  • Alex
    January 1, 1970
    Roald Dahl continues his mission to ruin your child by insisting that a man-sized centipede would not be the most horrifying thing in the world. Centipedes are nightmares, man. Wanna see a foot-long centipede hunting bats? Of course you don't, that's awful. Anyway, so here's a book about a kid who murders his legal guardians and takes off with his creepy friends. Along the way they meet magical people who make rainbows, and pick a fight with them. When they're done they deface the Empire State B Roald Dahl continues his mission to ruin your child by insisting that a man-sized centipede would not be the most horrifying thing in the world. Centipedes are nightmares, man. Wanna see a foot-long centipede hunting bats? Of course you don't, that's awful. Anyway, so here's a book about a kid who murders his legal guardians and takes off with his creepy friends. Along the way they meet magical people who make rainbows, and pick a fight with them. When they're done they deface the Empire State Building. As you can imagine, the result of all this is that they get a parade.There are some great songs in here, too, all of which should be sung to the tune of something by Gilbert & Sullivan.
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  • Bitchin' Reads
    January 1, 1970
    A favorite of mine from childhood, I decided to listen to the audiobook today as I cleaned. I forgot how violent Roald Dahl's books could be! It doesn't bother me none, and I remember finding the bouts of fancy amusing as a child.
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