Saturday, October 20, 2007

Book Review: My Uncle Oswald by Roald Dahl

Roald Dahl is, of course, most famous for his excellent children's books; the content of My Uncle Oswald, however, is the very antithesis of a children's story, invloving a series of sexually manipulated frauds in order to set up a sperm bank of the world's most marketable semen. Victims are plied with the world's greatest aphrodisiac, the Sudanese Blister Beetle, in order to encourage them to inadvertantly donate their seed - these victims include H.G. Wells, Stravinsky, Rachmaninov and Picasso!

This is an extravagant story, full of silliness and fun with a highly original and inventive purpose behind the tale - truly Dahl's most acomplished attempt to transfer his children's storytelling to an adult audience, retaining much of the inocence and humour he was famous for. One should not expect high class literature in this book, but for sheer entertainment value this is one of the most enjoyable books I have read and, incidently, reread.

Whilst I found this a highly enjoyable book, particularly the first half which had me turning the pages to find out what the next twist would be, one crticism I would have is that at one point it becomes fairly repetative, which is acknowledged by the author within the story, and it appears that the plot has run its course - however, Dahl turns this around with a fine, imaginitive ending.

This is highly recommended to any reader looking for a light and highly entertaining book, particularly those who have read and enjoyed many of Roald Dahl's superb children's books.

Score: 8.5/10

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