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Boy (Roald Dahl's Autobiography #1)

4.09  ·  Rating Details ·  42,266 Ratings  ·  2,075 Reviews
"'I am only eight years old,' I told myself. 'No little boy of eight has ever murdered anyone. It's not possible.'"

So thought Roald Dahl in 1924 when his plan to get revenge on the mean and disgusting candy-store owner Mrs. Pratchett seemed to have worked all too well. Writing about this and other boyhood adventures, the author has recalled only those that stand out as spe
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published December 1st 1984 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published 1984)
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Taylor Brady This book did include the use of profanity (the A word is used a couple of times by Dahl). The context is definitely something the students would…moreThis book did include the use of profanity (the A word is used a couple of times by Dahl). The context is definitely something the students would enjoy, however they must also have some understanding of how the British English language can be used differently and note some of the spelling changes (color>colour).(less)

Community Reviews

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Feb 02, 2017 Mariah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love reading nonfiction, especially autobiographies. This book was not just any autobiography but a book about Roald Dahl's childhood. Growing up I loved the book Matilda and enjoyed James and the Giant Peach and the BFG and now as an adult I am making it my goal to read all his books. I just set this goal a couple weeks ago and have read this book and The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me.

Roald Dahl told fascinating stories about his childhood up the the age of 18. He explained his extreme love of
This is a charming collection of stories from Roald Dahl's childhood. I loved his books when I was a kid (my favorites were Danny the Champion of the World, The BFG and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) and it was fun to hear some true tales from the great storyteller.

One of my favorite stories was about the free candy bars he got when he was at boarding school. Cadbury's would send over boxes of test chocolates, and the boys would sample the new flavors and write their reviews. Dahl said the b
(Deciding to re-read this book was inspired by the wonderful ladies at Gathering Books and their fantastic bimonthly meme‘Everything Dahl and Magical’. Which I absolutely adore. )

“When writing about oneself, one must strive to be truthful. Truth is more important than modesty. I must tell you, therefore, that it was I and I alone who had the idea for the great and daring Mouse Plot. We all have our moments of brilliance and glory, and this was mine.”

I first read this glorious memoir aged twelv
Jan 07, 2017 Matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
One of the great authors of children's stories, Roald Dahl entertains readers with this piece that encompasses his life to age twenty. While Dahl clearly states that this piece is not an autobiography (for those sorts of books are filled with stale and dusty tales), this is a fabulous compendium of memories from his early years. The eldest son of two Norwegians, Dahl's early years were a mixture of pain (he lost his sister and father within a single week) and childhood frivolity (he loved to pla ...more
Sep 21, 2011 Sita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Roald Dahl
Recommended to Sita by: Yr 7 English Teacher
I read this in year 7 for English and I loved it.

Me, I normally hate school books. But this one was different, I really liked this one. It was just so interesting. I can still remember half the stuff that happened in the book. That is how much it stuck with me. I recommend this to fans of Roald Dahl and even non fans, this book is different from all his other work.


Good different...

I still recommend it, the things that happen and how he describes it is just...


That is the only word to describe
Ahmad Sharabiani
Boy: Tales of Childhood (Roald Dahl's Autobiography #1), Roald Dahl
عنوانها: پسر؛ خاطرات پسر بچه؛
عنوان: پسر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ تصویرگر: کوینتن بلیک؛ مترجم: شهلا طهماسبی؛ تهران، نشر مرکز، کتاب مریم، 1378؛ در چهار و 166 ص؛ شابک: 9643054586؛ چاپ دوم 1381؛ سوم 1383؛ پنجم 1385؛ چاپ هشتم 1393؛ شابک: 9789643054588؛ موضوع: کودکی و جوانی رولد دال، 1990 تا 1916 م - قرن 20 م
عنوان: پسر؛ نویسنده: رولد دال؛ مترجم: نسرین مهاجرانی؛ تهران، نشر پیدایش، 1379؛ در 184 ص؛ شابک: 9646695876؛
عنوان:خاطرات پسربچه؛ نویسند
James Hartley
May 19, 2017 James Hartley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a good little book - quite a historical artefact now as Dahl, writing in the mid-80s, talks about events which are taking place about 100 years ago from today. Hes a very clear, cutting writer, with plain yet highly original style. This is mostly because of he sticks to writing about what HE finds interesting - caning, for example, which is described over and over in great detail. As he says, he is revolted by it - especially luxuriating in describing the ritual his Repton headmaster wou ...more
Sep 27, 2007 Melissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Both children and adults
My interest in reading this novel was stimulated a few weeks ago when I visited some friends, one of whom over the course of the evening dug up his collection of Roald Dahl books and proceeded to reintroduce us the magic we had near forgetten we had experienced as children in reading them.

I have always loved the sheer dottiness of the tales of Roald Dahl - the horrid nature of the some of his adult characters and the heroic nature of his young but strong willed main characters.

What I loved abo
Aug 20, 2014 Becky rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Before this year, I'd never read any of Dahl's work, and when I picked this up I didn't realize that it was an autobiography. So imagine my surprise when I crack the book open and see nothing at all whimsical or silly. Which is cool, but just not what I expected. Not reading the description strikes again!

Anyway, this is a nice collection of stories from Dahl's childhood and while I think that maybe a bit is embellished (who can remember that much detail from early childhood?), I enjoyed it quit
Aug 03, 2012 Andy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was one of those eye openers for me as a child; I read Boy countless times (and back home still have the well worn edition from 1986). The concept of an autobiography was so new and radical, at a time when reading was all make believe and fiction; it 'really happened', it wasn't made up! Rather, a magical book that opened up another world, glimpsing a life I would never experience.

His remembrances of childhood and school life are frank, vivid and frequently horrific. In particular, his acc
Sara Kamjou
Jun 17, 2016 Sara Kamjou rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
این کتاب به نوعی به عنوان زندگینامهی رولد دال شناخته میشه اما اصلا شبیه یک بیوگرافی خسته کننده نیست. کتاب پر از داستانهای بامزه از زندگی شخصی رولد دال ه و با خوندن این کتاب میبینیم که شخصیت خودش تا چه حد توی خلق داستانهاش مؤثر بوده.
شخصیت مادر رولد دال رو خیلی زیاد دوست داشتم. کسی که با وجود اینکه رولد تکپسرش بوده و شوهرش هم اوایل بچگی بچههاش از دنیا میره لوس بارش نمیاره. حنی وقتی قرار میشه بره آفریقای شرقی به جای اینکه مثل اکثر مادرها از دوری بچهش غر بزنه تشویقشم میکنه! خلاصه اینکه مادرش برام ال
Michelle Scott
Aug 03, 2007 Michelle Scott rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my favorite autobiography. I was envious of Dahl when he told of the story of when Cadbury would send new candy to his boarding school for the children to test. I remember the candy he described, it sounded delicious, but today you can't find the candy because this was around the 40's. I don't know why I just went on a tangent about candy; I guess Roald Dahl has that effect on me.
Mar 02, 2017 George rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Ο Ρόαλντ Νταλ, γνωστός και αγαπημένος σε όλο τον κόσμο χάρη στα πολύ ωραία και ευχάριστα παιδικά βιβλία του, έγραψε και δυο μικρά βιβλία, κάτι σαν αυτοβιογραφίες, με προσωπικές στιγμές από το παρελθόν του, με γεγονότα που τον στιγμάτισαν με τον έναν ή τον άλλο τρόπο. Πρώτο βιβλίο είναι αυτό που μόλις τελείωσα, στο οποίο αφηγείται γεγονότα από τα παιδικά και εφηβικά του χρόνια. Δεύτερο βιβλίο είναι το "Σόλο πορεία", στο οποίο γνωρίζουμε τον νεαρό μεν, ενήλικο δε, Ρόαλντ Νταλ. Όντας ανάποδος, το 2 ...more
Jo Woolfardis
A really lovely, endearing and funny account of a very lovely, endearing and altogether adventurous childhood from a wonderful author. Full review to follow.

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I am very fond of reading books about children’s bitter experiences. Perhaps I believe in American psychologist, Erik Fromm’s belief that “ to understand children, we, adults, try to think like a child again.”Unfortunately, not all adults are aware of this fact. That’s why the main purpose of literature is to educate people about life, basically about children life. I have read some books about children. I can hardly ever forget Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt ( 5 stars ), The Butcher’s Boy by P ...more
Rebecca (whymermaids)
I don't know if it was the book itself, my affinity towards Roald Dahl, or Dan Stevens' narration, but I absolutely adored this and, like listening to your grandfather's old stories, would most definitely listen to it again.
Roald Dahl è il mio mito.
Lo è da quando, a sette anni o giù di lì, l'ho scoperto per la prima volta, e probabilmente lo sarà per sempre.

Ha una voce inconfondibile, una visione del mondo che fa invidia e una vita splendidamente eccitante. C'è qualcosa nel suo modo di scrivere che rende ogni aneddoto, ogni capitolo e ogni personaggio assolutamente memorabile e facile da visualizzare. È divertente, a tratti esilarante, confortante e spaventoso, e a volte serio. È questo, forse, quello che ha dato a
Feb 13, 2009 Susan rated it it was amazing
I'm not usually one for autobiographies, but this one rocked. Ronald Dahl was a fortunate child. Fortunate that he wasn't killed many times by events in his life and by the awesome adventures and memories he was privileged to have.
I will give you my favorite excerpt from this book.
"It won't take two seconds, " the doctor said. He spoke gently, and I was seduced by his voice. Like an ass, I opened my mouth.
The tiny blade flashed in the bright light and disappeared into my mouth.

You must read the
What child is not completely enamored by the stories written by Roald Dahl? For that matter, what adult does not have a special place in their heart for his audacious, fantastical, magical, whimsical tales? Charlie & The Chocolate Factory, James & The Giant Peach, Fantastic Mister Fox, Matilda. To name only a few. Not to mention his equally magnificent fiction / nonfiction for adults.

Here is a chance for a behind-the-scenes look into this storyteller's world. What was this man's childhoo
Jan 08, 2017 Negin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir-biography
Reading this was such a pleasure, since Roald Dahl’s books were among our favorites when my children were younger. I haven’t yet seriously ventured into his books for adults. I tried to read one of them, but it was dark and I was sitting alone in the car and got seriously scared. I still want to give them a go and haven’t quite given up yet. Anyway, I digress. This is an easy and quick read as far as autobiographies go. It’s not a complete autobiography, however, just enjoyable stories about his ...more
Anna [Floanne]
Boy è il romanzo autobiografico di uno dei maggiori scrittori per ragazzi di sempre. Per scoprire la genesi del genio di Roald Dahl e di molti dei suoi personaggi più riusciti questa è una lettura obbligata.
Vissuto dal 1916 al 1990, Roald Dahl ebbe una vita molto movimentata. Nato a Llandaff, paesino del Galles, da genitori norvegesi, perse il padre in tenera età ma ebbe la fortuna di crescere con una madre coraggiosa e molto pratica, che si fece carico della sua grande famiglia allargata (oltre
Sep 14, 2016 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Bettie, Wanda
From BBC Radio 4 - Drama:
To celebrate the centenary year of Roald Dahl's birth, a full dramatization of tales from his own childhood. Sometimes magical, sometimes grotesque but always true, Dahl's boyhood stories are as remarkable as the acclaimed fiction he would go on to write as an adult.

"An autobiography is a book a person writes about his own life. It is usually full of all sorts of boring details. This is not an autobiography."

The story of Roald Dahl's childhood is filled with excitement a
Jan 25, 2011 Nikki rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Normally I would only give this about three stars, but I remember being fascinated by this book as a child. Now I think that there's very little real content -- I read it while my girlfriend was having dinner, for god's sake, and she didn't take that long, not even as much as an hour I'd say -- but of course what there is is well written and fun, and you can see the seeds of Roald Dahl's books in his autobiography. Not just the big ideas, but the sense of fun and even the way he describes things ...more
Oct 30, 2008 Eleanor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I think Roald Dahl is probably the best children's storyteller. When my third grade teacher read "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" to our class I remember thinking, "This guy is really good." But as good as "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" is (or The Twits or The Witches or Matilda or pick your favorite), it is "Boy", his memoir or childhood written for children, that I read so many times that the copy I found in my basement last week is completely ripped to shreds. He writes for children a ...more
Terri (Le Book Chronicles)
I really enjoyed this book. You don’t even have to be interested in Roald Dahl himself to enjoy this book, if you are just intrigued about what it must have been like to grow up in the ‘olden days’, then you should definitely read it. Full review on my blog -->

Question: Does anyone actually go to my blog?
I really did like this book which is unusual for me with an autobiography. But then again the first line of this novel reads:

"An autobiography is a book a person writes about his own life and is usually full of all sorts of boring details. This is not an autobiography".

This echoes completely my thoughts about such book. Most reflect what the person wants others to believe and are completely unreliable. I'm sure this one is the same but at least it is fun!

This short book is the first installment
Recommended to me by my 10 year old (she wanted me to read the one about the adenoids), this is just a lovely book. It's a precious adjective but applies perfectly to this book. It's not really an autobiography: Dahl spares us the tedious details and focuses on the good bits. Great for anglophiles (and norwegiaphiles if there is such a thing) and also a revealing glimpse of an era when children were treated in ways that would make modern parents blanch.
Jul 12, 2015 Meli rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maravillosamente maravilloso.

Pilar ☽
Lovely book!
I had to read this to help my little sister with her homework... I'm such a great sister.
Siddharth Nishar
Oct 26, 2016 Siddharth Nishar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dahl was born a century ago. This, along with his command over simple expressions wash the reader with anachronistic nostalgia.

The book serves to do three things. First, it paints a palpable picture of Norway's natural settings, beautiful in its atypical sceneries and the ways in which it shaped the locals.

Second, it paints a too-real image of the life for a child in days when anasthesia was considered unnecessary for minor surgeries and spanking with a cane stick was prevalent.

Third, it provid
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Around the Year i...: Boy: Tales of Childhood, by Roald Dahl 1 13 Oct 01, 2016 07:25PM  
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Roald Dahl was a British novelist, short story writer and screenwriter of Norwegian descent, who rose to prominence in the 1940's with works for both children and adults, and became one of the world's bestselling authors.

Dahl's first published work, inspired by a meeting with C. S. Forester, was Shot Down Over Libya. Today the story is published as A Piece of Cake. The story, about his wartime adv
More about Roald Dahl...

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“We all have our moments of brilliance and glory, and this was mine.” 229 likes
“When writing about oneself, one must strive to be truthful. Truth is more important than modesty.” 70 likes
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