Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews



Roald Dahl
Illustrator:   Quentin Blake 
For ages 7 to 10
Penguin, 1998   ISBN: 978-0141301051

Imagine what it would feel like to be snatched from your bed at night by an enormous giant. This is exactly what happens to Sophie. It is the witching hour and Sophie gets out of her bed at the orphanage to look out the window. To her amazement she sees an enormous person walking down the street. Before she can pull back from the window the enormous person sees her and though she hides under her bed clothes as quietly as she can, the enormous person reaches through the window, takes her out of her bed, and carries her off.

After a long journey Sophie is finally released and she discovers that she is now in Giant Country in the cave of the Big Friendly Giant, or BFG. The BFG explains, in his very unique brand of English, that she does need to fear him for he never eats “human beans.” Unfortunately the other giants who live in Giant Country do eat human beings, every night. So, it is vital that they keep Sophie well hidden. Naturally Sophie is appalled when she hears that the other giants – all nine of which are huge disgusting looking creatures – go out every night and eat countless men, women and children. When she overhears that the giants plan on eating English school children, Sophie decides that something has to be done. The giants have to be stopped once and for all.

After careful thought Sophie and the BFG come up with a plan. It is a very complicated plan and there are no guarantees that it will work, but Sophie is determined to give it a try.

In this deliciously funny and exciting book, Roald Dahl has created some truly splendid characters. Children will have a wonderful time saying the odd words that the BFG uses and there can be no doubt that young readers will love the way in which Sophie and the BFG finally overcome the giants. Quentin Blake’s signature illustrations perfectly compliment this wonderfully ludicrous story.