(Cover picture courtesy of Melville House Books.)
Who put superglue in Dad’s hat? Was it really a ghost that made Mom tear out of the house? Matilda is a genius with idiot parents—and she’s having a great time driving them crazy. But at school things are different. At school there’s Miss Trunchbull, two hundred menacing pounds of kid-hating headmistress. Get rid of the Trunchbull and Matilda would be a hero. But that would take a superhuman genius, wouldn’t it?
This is probably one of my favourite children’s books of all time and I still re-read it once a year or so. It was one of the books I read aloud to my little sister to get her interested in reading and will always hold a special place in my heart, like many of Roald Dahl’s books.
Matilda is the embodiment of everything children want to be and she does things they long to do: she stands up to adults, stands up for herself and proves that adults aren’t always in the right. At the same time, this isn’t an adult-bashing book because we have the lovely Miss Honey who is shown as a kind, caring woman who loves children.
Miss Trunchbull is her exact opposite and is the teacher (technically, headmistress or principal) out of every kid’s worst nightmare. This being a children’s book, her behavior is over-the-top, but in my experience, some of her behaviors are not far off what really terrible teachers do.
Matilda is a classic children’s novel, as it should be. It’s funny, teaches important life lessons and is incredibly entertaining. Parents, if you want to read aloud to your seven or eight year olds, this is the perfect book to choose. Both you and your children will enjoy this hilarious novel written by one of the greatest children’s writers ever. As a bonus, the movie is a great adaptation of the book if you want to see your favourite characters come to life.
I give this book 5/5 stars.