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The BFG - Roald Dahl

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Author: Roald Dahl / Format: Multiple copy pack / Date of publication: 06 September 2012 / Genre: Children's General Fiction / Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd / Title: The BFG / ISBN 13: 9780141343440 / ISBN 10: 0141343440 / Alternative EAN: 9780141322629

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      24.05.2011 20:06
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      Roald Dahl at his best!

      Although I was an avid reader as a child, I didn't really discover Roald Dahl's novels until I was a parent and I began looking for suitable books to share with my oldest son when he was around six or seven years old. I went on to buy a boxed set of most of Dahl's classic children's stories and have read most of them several times over. One of my personal favourites has to be the 'BFG' - the Big Friendly Giant.

      The story starts with a little girl, Sophie, who is actually based on Dahl's own grand-daughter who grew up to be a model and celebrity in her own right. Sophie spots a giant in the middle of the night and finds herself spirited away. Luckily for Sophie, this particular giant, the 'Big Friendly Giant' isn't a 'cannybull', unlike the rest of the giants. He doesn't eat children or any 'human beans', choosing to eat rather gross sounding 'snozzcumbers' instead.

      One of the main attractions of this story is found in the fantastic made-up words used throughout. This really is wonderfully inventive and imaginative, making it an ideal book to share with a child at bedtime or for a confident young reader to become engrossed in themselves. The story is relatively easy to follow although the use of the giant's made up language and strange semi-phonetic way of naming objects might cause a few problems for younger readers. Any sticklers for grammar might find the giant's interpretation of the English language quite difficult to stomach and there is also the unusual use of the continuous present tense, which makes reading the story seem a little odd in places. As the BFG himself explains, 'I sometimes is saying things a little squiggly.'

      As the adventure goes on, Sophie finds herself educated in the ways of the giants. Here, Dahl really has utilised every bit of his incredible imagination and really managed to captivate a child's attention. From an adult perspective, I found the book an hilarious read and particularly liked the BFG's revelation that every nationality has their own distinctive flavour! The Turkish apparantly taste of turkey, Greeks are greasy and people from Panama taste of hats! The humour throughout the story really appealed to my son from around six or seven years old. Any book that features farting - here known as 'whizzpoppers'- is likely to appeal to a child's sense of humour and this certainly succeeds.

      The BFG might not be the best choice for a bedtime read for very young children or for particularly sensitive children who might find the idea of giants (even friendly ones) sneaking around at night-time and stealing (or even eating) children, more than a little disturbing! There are a few scary moments in the story, such as when Sophie is almost eaten alive by the 'Bloodbottler' - a character every bit as nasty as the name suggests! There is also a lot of talk about dreams within the story, as the BFG is a dream catcher. A child already prone to bad dreams might find the idea of nightmares deliberately being planted by giants quite worrying. On the other hand, it could open up a discussion about dreams and where they really do come from which could prove to be reassuring rather than scary.

      As far as my son was concerned, this book was just a fun, imaginative read with what the film industry would call 'scenes of mild peril' to add interest. I would recommend this as an engaging read for children from around six to ten years, depending on the sensitivity of the child involved.

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        23.06.2010 01:00
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        A fun and touching story for all of the family

        Big Friendly Giant (BFG) brings back some good memories. I enjoyed reading it (several times) as a kid. As a result of this one book, I read all of Roald Dahl's books but this is the one that I remember the most.

        It's a beautiful story about a young girl, Sophie, who befriends a gentle giant. He is a dream catcher and is out at night catching some dreams. However, he was spotted through the window by Sophie so he took her in order to keep his secret needed to be kept.

        Perhaps a bit worrying that a young child is kidnapped, but fear not parents as the BFG takes good care of of Sophie and it turns out he is a very sweet and friendly giant.

        However, the other giants are not and they like to eat people. Sophie convinces the BFG that something has to be done about them.

        When you've got a problem, who ya gonna call? The Queen!

        I don't want to give too much away as it's an enjoyable read and every adult and child should take the time to read it. The language used is not difficult so it should be accessible to listen to even at the age of 5. I guess 8/9 years or older should be able to read it on their own too.

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          05.11.2009 17:26
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          All children should be introduced to "The BFG"

          The BFG is a story about a young orphan named Sophie who in the middle of the night is snatched from her bed by a mysterious very tall dark figure in a cloak. The mysterious figure turns out to be the B.F.G. also known as the Big Friendly Giant.

          He teaches Sophie all about Giant Country, the flesh eating giants, where dreams come from, and snozzcumbers - the only vegetable that grows there.

          When Sophie learns of how the flesh eating giants secretly snatch hundreds of 'human beans' and eat them every night whilst they sleep, she decides that something must be done about it once and for all. So she and the BFG concoct a wacky plan of action that might just work...

          This hilarious but enchanting book by Roald Dahl is ideal for kids and parents alike. From the BFG's strange grasp of the English language, to the hilarious chapter on Frobscottle and Whizzpoppers, there is something for everyone. The imagery is so powerful for that of a children's book - you can really imagine yourself racing across the countryside inside the BFG's ear with Sophie.

          To reminisce over this childhood favourite of mine, my partner and I took turns in re-reading it last week. We were both surprised to see just how many of the Spoonerisms and silly phrases that Dahl invented that we still use quite regularly today as adults! I have of course handed this book down to my children and if I ever have any grand-children, I will insist on buying them a copy too.

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          24.05.2009 00:33
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          a hugely enjoyable story - & a delight for anyone who loves playing with language.

          Little Sophie looks out of the orphanage window one night to see an enormous shadowy figure towering above the houses & blowing something through a child's bedroom window.
          To her horror he sees her, catches her & carries her off to his homeland, where she learns that he is the Big Friendly Giant with a clever way with dreams, & that the real baddies are the evil giants nearby. Children of the world are in peril from these flesh-eating monsters, but Sophie & the BFG have a dazzling plan to foil them, with a bit of special help.
          This book is Roald Dahl's chance to completely indulge his love of crazy wordplay as the BFG mangles his words & invents a fair few new ones too. you can sense him having the most enormous fun with the story & characters, & the result is a magnificent, thrilling adventure that's immense fun to read.

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            26.09.2008 22:25
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            Great book for kids of a wide range of ages

            The BFG is possibly Roald Dahl's most famous book. Having said that, all of his books are well known, but perhaps this one and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory sneak above the rest in terms of popularity. The BFG was written with Dahl's granddaughter in mind, and indeed, the character Sophie in the book is indeed Sophie Dahl, who is now writing books of her own.

            The BFG (Big Friendly Giant) is a giant who comes and put nice dreams into people's bedrooms at night. One night, he comes along to Sophie's bedroom and takes her away. He is worried, because all the other 9 giants are nasty and are more likely to go around eating children than giving them nice dreams. The BFG and Sophie go to Buckingham Palace to see the Queen to see what to do to stop the nasty giants. They come up with a plan and everything works out fine in the end.

            Of course it does! This is part of the magic of Dahl's books. The BFG is such a gentle tale that even the bits with the nasty giants in don't really scare much. It is very cleverly how Dahl nonchalantly brings the Queen into it, and how the BFG and Sophie just stroll up to the Queen's bedroom undetected and wake her up to discuss the problem over breakfast!

            Children aren't supposed to worry about whether the Queen is that easily accessible or not. All they care about is the BFG and Sophie finding a way to get rid of the nasty giants. I love the way the story pans out, accompanied by some lovely drawings that give you a really good picture. The tale is lovely and simple enough to hold a child's attention, and it is worth having to own, as are most of Dahl's books. The book is available from amazon.co.uk for £3.03.

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            18.06.2008 00:19
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            always a good set of books to get roald dahl was a treasured possesion in our house

            I remember reading this book to my two children when they were small and them giggling at the antics of this Big friendly giant and his stolen little girl Sophie.
            Sophie was in bed supposedly sleeping when she awoke to see a large shape at her window and saw this large shape putting something in the window through a large trumpet. The shape was The BFG and he seeing she had spotted him took her away from her home and told her not to scream as he was a Friendly Giant and did not want to hurt her. He decided he needed her help to stop the bad Giants from going after the other children so they could eat them.
            He took her to his home and introduced her to strange foods and drinks like the snozcumbers warning her that they had strange side effects.
            He gets her to help capture bad dreams and lock them away in bottles. replacing them with good ones.

            He visited the Queen with Sophie and asked her for help and did all sorts of funny things all the way through the book. They finally got the bad giants to stop what they were doing and get the army involved in this too.
            A brilliant magical story with easy to read pages for the young to follow. Illistrated in places with comical drawings.
            This is just one of many books by Roald Dahl which he devised initially for his children and then went on to publish them a little later.
            Other books in this type are
            The Boy, The Twits, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, James and the Giant Peach and many many more.
            I could go on for days about such a wonderful author and his writing ability but will leave you to find out for yourselves at the magic he performs in each and every book he wrote. I think this particular book is one of my favorites and I now know it is done as a DVD format too so you can get it on dvd and read the story too. Double the enjoyment in my view.

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              18.02.2008 11:33
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              A great bedtime read

              This book is about an orphaned girl caled sophie who one night wholst she couldnt sleep saw a giant blowing something into the bedroom windows in her street, frightened she tried to hide in her bed but the giant had already see her, he reached in through her window and took her with him back to his home.

              Luckily for sophie he was the big friendly giant who catches good dreams and blows them into peoples bedrooms and bottles bad dreams up forever.

              The other giants are not like the bfg they go out each night steeling people from there beds to eat them but the bfg lives on disgusting vegetables.

              Sophie and the bfg become friends and decide they have to find a way of stopping the other giants from eating people.

              Join sophie and her new friend the bfg as they scheem and plot to get rid of the nasty giants and even go and ask the queen for help.

              To find out if they are sucessful in there efforts to stop the nasty giants you will have to read this brilliant book which i have loved since i was a child but scares my daughters half to death when we read it.

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                11.04.2003 17:01
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                This was one of my favourite books as a child - I liked all the Roald Dahl books such as Matilda and Danny the Champion of the World but this was the best. Since I saw that it was nominated in the BBC's "Big Read" list of top books I thought that I would re-read it from a slightly older perspective. The BFG For anyone who has never read the BFG (you must have been a deprived child) the name stands for the Big Friendly Giant. The story is about a little girl named Sophie - Roald Dahl's granddaughter in real life. The illustrations by Quentin Blake are based on what she looked like as a little girl, and the BFG looks like Roald Dahl himself. She is an orphan who is kidnapped by the BFG, a 24 foot giant one night. The BFG capture dreams and puts them into people's bedrooms at night so they can dream. The BFG is the only nice giant, and there are nine other giants with names such as the Fleshlumpeater who go around eating up little children. Sophie and the BFG go to the Queen of England and come up with a plan to capture the horrible giants so that they can never eat people again. This plan, of course, works and the BFG and Sophie live happily ever after. Best Bits I think that my favourite bit in the book is where the Queen, Sophie and the BFG are having breakfast at Buckingham Palace. The Queen's butler has to make a table out of Grandfather clocks and a ping pong table for the BFG to sit at, and he eats dozens and dozens of eggs and sausages. It's just really funny and I thinks it's the best bit. The bit where Sophie reads the labels on the jars of dreams is good too, as is the chapter where the Fleshlumpeater almost eats Sophie who is hiding in a Snozcumber. Sorry if i'm giving things away to people who havn't read it! As an older reader I found myself getting a bit annoyed with all the spelling and grammatical "mistakes" that the BFG makes, and all the invented words he uses suc
                h as Frobscottle and Snozcumber. I know those are probably the bits that children like the most though! The story was just as fun as I remembered and I was glad that I had re-read it. Overall the BFG is probably one of the best childrens books around. It's Roald Dahls best I think, and one that generations of kids can enjoy. Adult readers may feel the same as I do about all the invented words, but if you can get back into a child's mindset I think it would be more fun. One thing though - it seemed a lot shorter now than when I first read it aged about 7 or 8! If you or your children have never read this book then go and borrow it from a library and become a kid again. You'll soon be giggling at whizpopping along with them!

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                  23.05.2002 00:20
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                  Everyone has heard of Roald Dahl. he is a classic childrens writter. He uses very simple stories and turns them into great childrens novel. The one I am reviewing is called The BFG, or the big friendly giant. I'll explain the plot first. There's a young girl that lives in an orphanage and she hates it there. One night she looks out the window and sees a mysterious large person looking into peoples windows then blowing a big trumpet into them. The giant notices her and kindnaps her. The girl learns that he is called the BFG and lives in a land of giants. What he does is goes around at night giving people dreams. He goes out to the dream world and catches them puts them into jars then blows them into little childrens windows at night. The girl learns that the BFG is the only nice giant in the whole of giant land and the other are horrible and mean. After a while, the monsters learn that the BFG sneaks off every night and they watch him and hence learn the way into our world, and you can guess what happens next......... This book is great i can remember it so vividly from when i was a child. If there are any parents reading this then they should definitley buy it for their children. Dahl creates a great world in which the story takes place. The humor is great for small children and they will grow to love the BFG. Dahl creates some great characters and a great story. Every litlle child will love this. I did :-)

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                    23.01.2002 23:41
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                    When a Giant snatches an orphan called Sophie from her bed, she fears that he's going to eat or at least hurt her. But although he carries her far away to Giant Country, the Giant has no intention of harming her. As he explains, in his way of talking, "I is the only nice and jumbly Giant in Giant Country! I is THE BIG FRIENDLY GIANT! I is the BFG." The BFG tells Sophie how he mixes up dreams to blow through a trumpet into the rooms of sleeping children. But soon, all the BFG's powers are put to the test as he and Sophie battle to stop the other Giants from tucking into the children of the world. This is part of my description of the bfg. Which as you will find out at the top that he is a giant who has a funny way of speaking it is not the way I speak as you may think. Who also mixes dreams for children who are sleeping and unaware of his attendance? Young Sophie as you may know already is a little girl who is an orphan who makes friends with the giant. My thoughts of the book are. I thought it was quite good and unusual because you don’t really find many books about a giant and little girl who make friends well that I have read. I also think it is very well thought out because the way people are described is very good because it really does create a picture in your head about what the characters would be like in real life. I liked the BFG himself because I thought his speech was quite good because the author has really thought this out. Also the phrases he says to Sophie are very nice. The BFG I’m not going to spend all of the op talking about the story so if you have not read it I recommend it to all ages so I hope you read it because I can guarantee that you will love it like I did. BIBLIOGRAPHY James and The Giant Peach Charlie and The Chocolate Factory The Magic Finger Charlie and The Great Glass Elevator Fantastic Mr Fox Matilda The Twits The Witc
                    hes (Winner of the 1983 Whitbread Award) The BFG George's Marvellous Medicine Boy: Tales of Childhood Boy and Going Solo Esio Trot Danny the Champion of The World Going Solo PICTURE BOOKS Dirty Beasts The Enormous Crocodile The Giraffe, The Pelican and Me The Minpins Revolting Rhymes FOR OLDER READERS The Great Automatic Grammatizator And Other Stories Rhyme Stew The Vicar of Nibblewick The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More PLAYS The BFG Charlie and The Chocolate Factory Charlie and The Great Glass Elevator Fantastic Mr Fox James and The Giant Peach.

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                      25.07.2001 00:40
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                      Thanks go to dooyoo user "grinchgirl" who brought it to my attention that the BFG first appeared as one of the characters in the stories that Danny's dad told his son, in Roald's other book, "Danny The Champion Of The World". *-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-* Roald Dahl has to be one of the most splendid authors of all time, and as for his books, crawling with magically brilliant plots and schemes, and sparkling humour, there is not a suitable adjective to describe the works of Dahl. The BFG (Big Friendly Giant) has to be his best ever piece of writing published, followed closely by Matilda and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and that story's sequel, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. The story starts in a horrible dormitory in London. Sophie is one of the unlucky children who lives there, without her own mother and father to love and adore her. Sophie lay awake in her bed, not able to sleep, for the brightly shining moonlight beaming down on her pillow. She gets up and opens the window to have a look out, and sees a marvellous sight. A greatly sized creature walking along the street, with a strange briefcase and a long trumpet. As she is staring, the huge figure turns around and sees her. It starts up the street after her, and Sophie hurries to close the window, climb into bed and hide underneath the blanket. The BFG sticks his hand in through the window and snatches Sophie. After a bumpy ride in the BFG's pocket, he and Sophie arrive in Giant Country. Heading back to the BFG's cave, Sophie sees that nine other giants live there also. But these are human-eating giants, unlike the BFG who likes "snozzcumbers" far more than the flesh of any animal. Sophie sees the dreaded murderous behaviour of these giants, and sets about getting the BFG to inform the Queen of England. Soon there are RAF helicopters and army tanks everywh
                      ere, and the giants are dunked into a huge empty ditch, with only snozzcumbers to eat. I won't spoil the ending anymore for you than I have done, however I can tell you that it's a happy ending from Sophie's point of view, and the point of view of the other chidren from the dormitory also. This is a totally terrific book, possibly my favourite book ever!! Definitely worth a read, whether you're a Dahl fan or not, even if you've read it before, have another read!! You never get tired of a book you love!!

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                        03.09.2000 16:50

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                        The BFG is again another great bok br Roald Dahl. It is about an orphan called Sophie and a Big Friendly Giant. The story is about the BFG getting is own back on all the big giants that are nasty to him. He gets is own back by going to the Buckhingham Palace and giving the queen a dream that makes her want to get rid of the gaints so she helps the BFG get rid of all the giants by sending helicopters in to tie the big giants up and drop them in a hole. I recomend this book to anyone I have the video and the book and I never get boared of it.

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                        27.08.2000 21:25
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                        Dahl has got to be one of the most magical authors of all time. I have yet to read a Roald Dahl book that wouldn't capture the imagination of any reader, young or old, and this is no exception. It's a million of your childhood fantasies about being whisked away to a fantastical place, to rid the world of a terrible evil, to find out where dreams (and nightmares) actually come from. Dahl spins an amazing tale, and I defy anyone not to be disgusted by the Giants, the most horrible band of murderers ever to walk the earth (and this is a kid's book?). Sophie is everyman's perfect heroine, the orphan girl who saves the world by enlisting the Queen of England!?! If you ever had any doubts about reading Dahl, or you missed him when you were younger, catch up now!!!! (it's really never too late to appreciate him!). You'll be Hornswoggling for weeks!

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                        Evidently not even Roald Dahl could resist the acronym craze of the early eighties. BFG? Bellowing ferret-faced golfer? Backstabbing fairy godmother? Oh, oh... Big Friendly Giant! This BFG doesn't seem all that F at first as he creeps down a London street, snatches little Sophie out of her bed, and bounds away with her to giant land. And he's not really all that B when compared with his evil, carnivorous brethren, who bully him for being such an oddball runt. After all, he eats only disgusting snozzcumbers, and while the other Gs are snacking on little boys and girls, he's blowing happy dreams in through their windows. What kind of way is that for a G to behave?