Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Twits by Roald Dahl illustrated by Quentin Blake

Of course this is not a new book.  It was first published in 1980 but recently a teacher reported that our CD version was not working so I bought it home to listen.  The CD just needed a quick clean and this then allowed me a glorious few days of listening to this wildly funny story as I drove my car to and from school and other places.

Roald Dahl is so wonderful at creating fabulous vile characters that all readers love to see get 'their just desserts'.  Mr and Mrs Twit are spectacularly awful.  The description of Mr Twit's beard full of  "dried up scrambled egg ... spinach and tomato ketchup and fish fingers and minced chicken livers and all the other disgusting things Mr Twit liked to eat" perfectly introduces this awful man.  If you look closely Roald Dahl is so skilled with his use of language.  We read of scrambled eggs - that might be okay.  Then spinach - slightly disgusting.  Tomato ketchup - I wonder if he wanted to say tomato sauce? But it is the final food that really twists at your stomach - chicken livers - these sound the most revolting of all.

Our copy of the audio book is read by Simon Callow and he does a wonderful job with all the voices especially Muggle-Wump the monkey and the delightful Roly-Poly bird. When you read or listen to The Twits I am sure you will cheer for these heroes as they outwit and ultimately destroy Mr and Mrs Twit who have been so cruel and horrid for far too long.

"One week later, on a nice sunny afternoon, a man called Fred came round to read the gas meter.  When nobody answered the door, Fred peeped into the house and there he saw, on the floor of the living room, two bundles of old clothes, two pairs of shoes and a walking stick.  There was nothing more left in this world of Mr and Mrs Twit.  And everyone, including Fred, shouted....HOORAY!"

If you have not read The Twits rush into a library and grab a copy today. If you have read The Twits - rush into a library and re-read it - you will not be disappointed.  Finally if you have no time to read The Twits then look for the audio book and listen while you do other things.

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