Roald Dahl (1916-1990) was born in Wales of Norwegian parents. He spent his childhood in England and, at age eighteen, went to work for the Shell Oil Company in Africa. When World War II broke out, he joined the Royal Air Force and became a fighter pilot. At the age of twenty-six he moved to Washington, D.C., and it was there he began to write. His first short story, which recounted his adventures in the war, was bought by The Saturday Evening Post, and so began a long and illustrious career.
After establishing himself as a writer for adults, Roald Dahl began writing children's stories in 1960 while living in England with his family. His first stories were written as entertainment for his own children, to whom many of his books are dedicated. Roald Dahl is now considered one of the most beloved storytellers of our time. Although he passed away in 1990, his popularity continues to increase as his fantastic novels, including James and the Giant Peach, Matilda, The BFG, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, delight an ever-growing legion of fans. Learn more about Roald Dahl on the official Roald Dahl Web site: www.roalddahl.com
Gr 2-4-Actor Simon Callow tackles one of Roald Dahl's most gruesome stories (Puffin, pap. 1998) with relish in this gleefully naughty audiobook. Mr. and Mrs. Twit are two of the most disgusting, nasty, and horrid characters in children's literature, from their repulsive looks (the story opens with a long, detailed description of Mr. Twit's unkempt beard) to the mean and horrible tricks they play on one another (Mrs. Twit enjoys hiding her glass eyeball in unexpected places and lacing the spaghetti with worms; Mr. Twit works for weeks to convince his wife that she has "The Shrinks"). Callow captures the dry humor of Dahl's narrative voice perfectly, and creates appropriately nasty voices for Mr. and Mrs. Twit as well. Unfortunately, the thick accents and loud tones of these voices often mean that the dialogue is difficult to understand. Still, Callow's able narration brings Dahl's ironic sensibilities to life, and a sense of satisfaction is inevitable when the terrible Twits come to an appropriately gruesome end.-Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Maryland School for the Deaf, Columbus
In Dahl's typically outre outing, the repulsive, misanthropic Mr. and Mrs. Twit become the target of revenge by the Mugglewump monkeys--who have finally had enough. Ages 7-11. (Apr.)