Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl is about Willy Wonka, a reclusive and eccentric chocolate maker and a little boy called Charlie. For the first time in the ten years since he started his chocolate factory, he plans to open its doors to the public. He offers the five children who find golden tickets in their Wonka candy bars, a private tour of his factory.
Young Charlie Bucket finds a dollar bill in the street. Thrilled with his find, he buys two Wonka’s Whipple–Scrumptious Fudgemallow Delights, even though he knows that his family could use the extra dollar on food. Fortunately for him, he finds the golden ticket under the wrapper of his second chocolate bar!
The next morning, an excited Charlie, waits at the gates of the chocolate factory along with the other winners : Mike Teavee, Veruca Salt, Violet Beauregarde, and Augustus Gloop. With Wonka as their guide, they enter a world of fantasy filled with wild inventions and secret rooms. They meet the strange Oompa-loompas, short plump people with orange and green hair from Loompa Land, who talk in a sing-song manner, in very high or very low pitched voices. And during the tour the lovable though at times mean Wonka tests the character of each of the children. The transformation the children undergo inside the chocolate factory is simply amazing. Rest assured their lives will never be the same again.
The book is delightful, thrilling and utterly captivating.
For the first fifteen years of his writing career, author Roald Dahl wrote fiction only for adults. He became interested in writing for children when he had to make up bedtime stories for his daughters, Olivia and Tessa. His first book was The Gremlins. It was followed by James and the Giant Peach. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was his third book.
When it was published in 1964, its simple language, strong plot and tremendous sense of mischief appealed to children all over the world. In 1971, Warner Brothers made a movie based on it. The movie was called Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. A remake of the movie, with Johnny Depp (of Pirates of the Carribean fame) as Wonka is scheduled for release sometime this year.
Dahl’s other books for children, including Esio Trot, Matilda, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, and his autobiography Going Solo, all make for great reading.
Excerpt: An excerpt from one of the poems in the book about a boy called Augustus Gloop and how he is transformed.
Augustus Gloop! Augustus Gloop!
The great big greedy nincompoop!
How long could we allow this beast
To gorge and guzzle, feed and feast
On everything he wanted to?
Great Scott! It simply wouldn’t do!
However long this pig might live,
We’re positive he’d never give
Even the smallest bit of fun
Or happiness to anyone.
So what we do in cases such
As this, we use the gentle touch,
And carefully we take the brat
And turn him into something that
Will give great pleasure to us all–
A doll, for instance, or a ball,
Or marbles or a rocking horse.
Publisher: Puffin Books
Released: January 2002