“That’s why they always put two blank pages at the back of the atlas. They’re for new countries. You’re meant to fill them in yourself.”
Roald Dahl has captivated our imagination with many of his classic children stories, such as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Matilda. While all his well known works are aimed for children, they all have a hint of shocking adult themes that embed themselves in our minds at a young age. For me, The BFG captured my heart early in my third grade and continued to shape me throughout my school years. It taught me through it’s fantastic leading lady Sophie that anything can be achieved, no matter how big or small the problem was.
The BFG starts out very dark for a children’s book. Sophie, an orphan who has to wear very thick glasses is the only one awake in her orphanage during the time that she calls the witching hour, when she glimpses the tall dark figure of the BFG. Once the huge giant realizes he’s been spotted, he quickly snatches her out of her bed and takes her away to what she later finds is Giant Country. Although she’s certain she’s going to be eaten, Sophie soon realizes that the giant with the huge ears means her no harm, and is actually a very kind soul. The Big Friendly Giant is one of ten giants in the desolate country he calls home, and is considered the runt since he’s only 24 feet tall and all the others reach 50 and beyond. They also eat people all across the world, much to the horror of Sophie. Her only consolation is that she’s now in the company of a vegetarian giant who catches dreams. When Sophie realizes that little boys and girls from England are gong to be eaten the next night, she and The BFG come up with a plan to stop the maneating giants once and for all.
It’s no wonder that The BFG has now become a major motion picture, especially after two Willy Wonka films and Matilda’s broadway show. Filled with all the essential ingredients for a magical story, including a brave heroine and fierce villains, Dahl manages to capture our imaginations by the first line. Whether your 8 years old or 80, The BFG is sure to speak to you on a spiritual level.
The main character, Sophie, is everything any little girl would want to be. Brave, smart, and sassy, she never lets her eyesight or lack of parents stamp down her spirit. Even when she’s faced with the impossible task of stopping nine, monstrous giants she doesn’t back down from the challenge. Paired with the BFG, a timid and friendly giant, they make an unstoppable team. Roald Dahl does a fantastic job by giving all his characters flaws. Throughout the story, the BFG words things funny and incorrectly, causing Sophie to correct him repeatedly. But once the giant, hurt, explains that he taught himself to write and speak, Sophie pushes down her urges to correct him.
The BFG, with all it’s colorful characters, teaches many important lessons.
One: Any task, no matter how tiny or giant, can be solves with a great deal of bravery and cleverness.
Two: Never assume that you’ve learned everything there is to learn. Chances are, there is much you don’t understand yet.
Three: Prejudice and profiling is never right, because there is always an exception to everything. Except snozzcumbers.
Catch The BFG in theaters July 1st and see Sohpie’s and the BFG’s giant adventure on the big screen!
About the Author: Roald Dahl was born on September 13, 1916, in Llandaff, South Wales. In 1953, he published the best-selling story collection Someone Like You and married actress Patricia Neal. He published the popular book James and the Giant Peach in 1961. In 1964, he released another highly successful work, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which was later adapted for two films. Over his decades-long writing career, Dahl wrote 19 children’s books. He died on November 23, 1990, in Oxford, England.
This guest blog is from Gillian Grant – A lover of all things fictional, whether it be books, movies or TV shows. Cozy sweatshirts, messy hair and a cup of tea make my day. When I’m not writing or reading, I’m usually sleeping or eating junk. Food is life and i will not deprive myself of it! You can find her on Instagram – @paperback_confessions