This is one of Roald Dahl’s books that I don’t really remember reading as a child so looked forward to sharing it at bedtime with Henry.
He can be quite sensitive sometimes and often picks up on emotions in books, however I wasn’t prepared for him to be quite so upset after the first chapters and wondered whether this was the right book for him. When I asked him what was wrong, he simply said “James has no one to play with and that’s sad”.
He cheered up a few chapters later and said he liked that Aunt Spiker and Aunt Sponge were squashed because they were mean!
The chapters vary a lot in length so it was often hard to say how much we read at each bedtime. Henry likes all of Quentin Blakes illustrations and we often talked about each of the pictures.
Henry said his favourite character was all the animals and James – he couldn’t choose. He also said he liked the happy ending and was especially pleased James now has friends.
As an adult I found this book to be one of the strangest of Roald Dahl’s with some odd events and characters such as the Cloud Men. Henry however soaked it all in and seemed to really enjoy all the whimsical bits so overall a winning bedtime story!