Here’s my ninth post for the 2015 Classics Challenge! It’s not too late to join me (and 200+ other people) in reading one classic per month.
“A stodgy parent is no fun at all. What a child wants and deserves is a parent who is SPARKY”.
Danny thinks his dad is the most marvellous and exciting father a boy could wish for. Life is happy and peaceful in their gipsy caravan, until one day Danny discovers his dad has been breaking the law. What’s more, soon Danny has to join his father as they attempt to pull off a daring and devilish plot against their horrible, greedy neighbour, Mr Victor Hazell.
WHEN I Discovered This Classic
It came in my lovely Roald Dahl box set, full of 15 wonderful Dahl novels. I didn’t know anything about it at all, except that it was my friend Caitlin’s favourite Dahl story.
WHY I Chose to Read It
I’ve enjoyed reading Roald Dahl novels over the past couple of years. I haven’t read one this year, so I thought it was about time. I chose Danny the Champion of the World because it’s one that a lot of people seem to adore and yet is completely new to me, compared to some of the previous stories I’ve read, like The Witches and Matilda. I also haven’t read any classics with illustrations this year, so I was looking forward to spending time with Quentin Blake’s brilliant pictures.
WHAT Makes It A Classic
Roald Dahl’s stories are like being inside a child’s brain. They’re full of humour and adventure. They’re full of incompetent adults and loving adults. They’re full of wonderful things to remember, like the quote at the top of this review. As I discovered when I first read Matilda, Roald Dahl’s stories can also be enjoyed immensely by adults.
“Most of the really exciting things we do in our lives scare us to death. They wouldn’t be exciting if they didn’t”.
WHAT I Thought of This Classic
It’s different to Roald Dahl’s other stories in that it feels more contemporary compared to the fun and whimsical stories I’ve come across so far. I adored that Danny’s father would tell him stories, referencing Roald Dahl’s other work, like The BFG and Witches. As I’ve read both of these, I enjoyed it very much. I remember there being a lot of chat about fictional fathers this year on Father’s Day, and Danny’s popped up as being one of the best dads in fiction. I can see why – he’s a brilliant father. He’s protective and yet will send Danny on exciting adventures. He tells wonderful stories and is incredibly intelligent. Danny’s a happy child. His life isn’t full of expensive things or luxury, but it’s full of interesting and fulfilling experiences, and a lot of love, all down to his dad. Although Danny the Champion of the World isn’t one of my Dahl favourites, it was a joy to read. I was ready for awful Mr Hazell to get his comeuppance!
WILL It Stay A Classic
I think it’ll be a terrible year, the year that Roald Dahl’s novels stop being read. I cannot imagine that this will ever happen.
WHO I’d Recommend It To
People who love children’s stories, funny stories and heartwarming stories. People who haven’t yet read a Roald Dahl novel and are a little wary about delving into the more eccentric stories. People who are young at heart.