Evan’s ESS = 9 out of 10
Erin’s ESS = 7 out of 10
Content = G (Name Calling, Talking and Singing Insects)
"My dear young fellow,' the Old-Green-Grasshopper said gently, 'there are a whole lot of things in this world of ours you haven't started wondering about yet."
Why: 75% of the novel is spent inside an exceptionally large fruit. Actually, the book was originally titled James and the Giant Cherry, but Roald Dahl, in his own words rationalized that a peach is: “prettier, bigger and squishier than a cherry.” Makes sense to us! The book is great and even better if you have a copy illustrated by Quentin Blake.
Dahl has a habit of creating horribly-nasty characters, which is why many of his books have found their way onto the ALA’s list of most challenged books. True to form, James and the Giant Peach delivers its nastiness in the form of Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker. For this reason, James escape is that much more gratifying (hopefully we didn’t give too much away here). The entire crew aboard the SS Giant Peach is lovable and inventive, although like us, you might question the physics of the bird scene. Then again you might question the entire concept of four foot tall, talking insects and rapidly growing fruit. Don’t question, just read. You’ll be glad you did.
Editor’s Note: For anyone interested in Two Bibliomaniac trivia…and who isn’t? Let’s be honest. What movie did the two brains behind the blog choose on their first date back in high school? Ding, ding, ding, ding! James and the Giant Peach.