Wednesday, February 2, 2011
I’m not sure if the BFG the best book I read in January, but it definitely made an impression. At the beginning of the year my host teacher started reading it to her class, and as soon as she opened that book it began to slowly take over my life. All of the kids love it, so of course we have to have a BFG themed party. Trust me Snozzcumbers, Frobscottle, and Whizzpoppers aren’t as much fun to make as they are to read about.
On top of that one of my first grade struggling readers has latched onto this book. She will spend every available moment wading through it one sentence at a time. Now that she’s started reading along with audio books on my i-Pod every morning she greats me at the door with “did you get The B.F.G. on That Thing?!” Not even my i-Pod was safe from The BFG this January.
But I digress. The BFG is an amazing book that I would recommend to any one. However, from a writing point of view there are a number of things that make it amazing.
Word choice: The best part of this book is that the author makes up a lot of his own words, a lot of which are combos of preexisting words. A half dozen different descriptors can be expressed with just one word.
Characters: Even if a character is only mentioned once they still manage to make an impression that lasts the whole book. Every character feels so well rounded and realistic in a completely implausible way, and I think the main way Dahl does this is through the names he gives the characters. Names like Childchewing Giant, the Meatdripping Giant, and the Big Friendly Giant give the reader an instant association with the character.
Visual imagery: There are so many new things and characters being introduced throughout the whole book that is the imagery wasn’t stellar it would be indecipherable. The big thing that helps with this is that this readers are getting the benefit of having the scene described to them from the perspective of both The BFG and Sophie, which really outlines the oddities of the book.
Setting: Roald Dahl creates a whole new society in The BFG, but it’s so realistic that it feels real. Yet Roald doesn’t waist a lot of time describing the setting. He gives it short and sweet making every word count.
The moral of this post is that The BFG is a wonderful, vivid book that I truly do love. I just wish I could get away from it!