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Boy: Tales of Childhood (Roald Dahl Autobiography #1)

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  29,699 ratings  ·  1,339 reviews
In Boy, Roald Dahl recounts his days as a child growing up in England. From his years as a prankster at boarding school to his envious position as a chocolate tester for Cadbury's, Roald Dahl's boyhood was as full of excitement and the unexpected as are his world-famous, best-selling books. Packed with anecdotes -- some funny, some painful, all interesting -- this is a boo ...more
Paperback, 176 pages
Published August 5th 1986 by Puffin Books (first published 1984)
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(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 twelve
Sita Sargeant
Oct 07, 2011 Sita Sargeant rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  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
Sep 29, 2007 Melissa rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  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
Michelle Scott
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.
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
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
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
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
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
Grady McCallie
Roald Dahl's fiction for adults is often dark and twisted. In his fiction for kids, that impulse is usually kept in the background, displaced in the main thread of the story by the sheer likeability of the main character, even if there are periodic signals that the world of the story has a lot of cruelty in it.

Boy, Dahl's memoir of his childhood, explains a lot of this - his remembered youth consists of wrenching losses, exile to a series of dreadful boarding schools, and brutal medical procedu
Reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory for the first time was almost a mystical experience. I was around Charlie's age and even though I knew the book was way out there in terms of reality I understood the disconnect Charlie felt towards adults and authority. I didn't read lots of Dahl's other works until I was in library school. As an older reader I was struck by how hideous and cruel the adult characters were and how hapless the lives of the kid characters were written. I don't think JK Row ...more
K.D. Absolutely
Dec 12, 2009 K.D. Absolutely rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tata J
Recommended to K.D. by: 501 Must Read Books
Shelves: 501
The beauty of this book is in the way it was written. It's like Roald Dahl was your buddy and for each time you were together, he told you pieces of his life when he was very young. It is not as grandiose as say Frank McCourt's ANGELA'S ASHES (that was not all true according to its critics). In fact, the chapters of this book, BOY: TALES OF CHILDHOOD is composed of Dahl's young life anecdotes that he would not forget. He, unlike McCourt, though, professed in this book's introduction, that these ...more
Jess Michaelangelo
A must-read for lovers of Roald Dahl, this little book delves into tales from his early life, spanning his childhood up until he leaves for East Africa while working for the Shell Company (where the subsequent book Going Solo picks up the tale).

I've had this book sitting on my shelf for quite some time now, but I'm glad that I finally picked it up. It was definitely an interesting look into the life of one of my very favorite authors, and it was interesting to see what exactly made him tick. It
Leave it to the wayward and whimsical Roald Dahl to write his memoirs in a very unorthodox way: a collection of memories that prove he didn’t only have a vivid imagination, but always had a way of looking at the world that would become golden in writing children’s books.

My favourite scene without a doubt is about the candy store where they sell liquorice bootlaces which they are meant to believe are made from rat’s blood.
”Every ratcatcher in the country’, the father had said, ‘takes his rats t
K. Hosein
Sep 09, 2012 K. Hosein rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone remotely interested in Dahl or his books
Recommended to K. by: Given to me on my 26th birthday by Portia Subran.
'We all have our moments of brilliance and glory, and this was mine.'

"Boy: Tales of Childhood" was one of the books gifted to me by my girlfriend, Portia, on my 26th birthday. She had urged me to read this before delving into Roald Dahl's other work of personal nature, "Going Solo". So I started this today and finished it today. The book is described by Dahl not as an autobiography but just a recollection of events that he could skim from the top of his consciousness, events that have stayed wi
Roald Dahl was one of my favorite authors as a child and still is.

In Boy: Tales of Childhood, Roald Dahl talks about his most vivid childhood memories including family trips to Norway, plots against despised grown-ups, floggings at school and much more. His description and tales of certain adults are definitely entertaining and made me laugh a couple of times. I especially enjoyed reading about his visits to the glorious sweet-shop and all the amusing things his friend Thwaites used to say abou
“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.”

This book is about Roald Dahl when he was a boy, and the strange and exciting things he did at that age. Roald's Story is touching and hilarious. This book is for People who like Comedy and Biographys.
(Yes, we read this las
Todd Cannon
Jan 21, 2013 Todd Cannon rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Readers 14 or older
Recommended to Todd by: You've Got Mail
I really like the Movie You've Got Mail with Tim Hanks and Meg Ryan. I always wondered what book it was that Meg Ryan was reading to the kids in her bookshop when Tom Hanks came in with his little aunt and his little brother. Well, I finally Googled it and it is this book by Roald Dahl. My local library had a copy so I drove on down and picked it up.

This is an autobiography of Dahl's life up through when he finished school a little before the age of 18. Dahl, however, claims in a few paragraphs
Buku ini merupakan salah satu buku dari box set karya Dahl yang pertama aku baca. Sudah sering mendengar komentar-komentar tentang buku Dahl yang ajaib, bahkan dalam salah satu film yang pernah aku tonton terlempar prinsip dasar sang tokoh wanita yang tidak akan membiarkan anaknya membaca karya Dahl...haha

Setiap melakukan perjalanan keluar kota,buku menjadi salah satu bawaan wajib dan aku harus memilih yang kira-kira menghibur dan menyenangkan hati, biar ga bosan dijalan. Pada salah satu perjala
I adore British schoolboy/schoolgirl stories. I grew up reading books like Mallory Towers, Naughtiest Girl in School, St. Claires, and all the other Enid Blyton favourites (ugh, North American schools PUT SOME BLYTON IN THE KIDS’ LIVES!). Give me a British / European boarding school setting and you have got me hooked. Luckily for me, Boy focuses on Dahl’s formative years in various private schools.

The anecdotes he has about tricks he played as a young boy, headmasters he dealt with, the boarding
As a fan of Roald Dahl's children's books from when I myself was a young one, I was interested when my wife recommended me "Boy." Its a short and light read, as far as autobiographies go.

It is full of cute little stories about Dahl's childhood, mostly revolving around major pranks he managed to pull off as a kid. One lovely scene tells the story of Dahl and friends putting a dead mouse in a jar of sweets at a store run by an unfriendly old lady.

The part I found most intriguing about the story, h
James Venkatrao
This book goes under 'A diary, autobiography, or biography' on my bingo board. A Boy written by Roald Dahl expresses the feelings and personality of a young boy growing up who is known by the name of Roald Dahl. It shows how he grew up and how his family struggled through difficulties also showing the funny side of Roald Dahl and digging deep into his personality. When he was small his older sister had died of appendicitis and was a sad period of time because over the next two months his dad die ...more
"Boy" is a hilarious, sometimes painful, and didactic account of a young British man's life in the first part of the twentieth century. This young man just happpens to become the very influential author and diplomat, Roald Dahl. I am a big Roald Dahl fan, and its wonderful to get a glimpse into the childhood of a brilliant mind, who gave the world many wonderful characters, this time all nonfiction. Next I think i'll reread "Matilda" and "The BFG".

The memoir takes a the reader on a walk through
Roald Dahl se ha convertido en mi nuevo autor favorito, este libro es una serie de relatos que hablan de su niñez, tiene una forma de escribir conmovedora pero a la vez ácida, la mayoría de estas anécdotas hablan sobre su vida en la escuela, la rigidez de algunos colegios ingleses, los castigos que recibía, las travesuras que hacía y la manera en que estas historias lo inspiraron a la hora de escribir. Hay una en particular que me gusto mucho,cuenta que mientras estaba en el internado, una fábri ...more
I liked this book a lot! This is because I think that Roald Dahl wrote an autobiography, not like any of the autobiographies I've read from before. He uses humorous situations and anecdotes to prevent his autobiography from being boring. What I also liked about this book is how Dahl wrote, honestly, about how he used to do pranks and how devilish he and his friends were. I especially liked the prank that Dahl made, with his friends, on the local sweet-shop owner, when they put a dead mouse in th ...more
Ajay Venkat
Boy by Roald Dahl is definitely one of Dahl's masterpieces. This book basically takes you through Roald Dahl's childhood, with interesting plots and solutions. Roald Dahl definitely writes about some of his actual life, but my personal feeling is that some of the events in this book are not real; they have just been added for the story rather than for writing about himself. I think this because some of the events were just too unreal.

Nevertheless, this book really went with the flow and the gro
Personally speaking, Boy, by Roald Dahl, is one of my favourite books, having been a boarding school student myself. Re-reading the book brought back memories of my school days away from home and this was something Dahl often struggled to deal with. As an adult writing the book, he is looking back on childhood memories, both wonderful and tragic. He recalls some of the pranks that he was involved in and how physical punishment by schoolmasters was considered acceptable in English schools during ...more
Emma Hart
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Vivid childhood memoir

Roald Dahl brings all his trademark powers of description to bear on this striking account of childhood memories, chronicling both the joyous and painful. Dahl, the child of Norwegian immigrants to Wales, begins by describing his one-armed father's unlikely journey to success and then his own early days of childhood and subsequent school years. There are many sparkling comic incidents, told with relish, but throughout an unmistakable theme is the cruelty of public (American
I grew up with this book. When I was eleven years old I saw this book on a shelf in the school library, and the librarian recommended it to me. I was already a fan of Roald Dahl's books since I was a kid, but I didn't had the chance to read this one. Boy is a wonderful book which introduces you to Dahl's childhood. His stories are hilarious and I remember sitting and laughing while I was reading them. I still love this book today and it is definitely one of the best books that I have ever read i ...more
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Mrs. O's Bookworms: Boy: Tales of Childhood 1 2 Mar 19, 2014 05:24AM  
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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 a
More about Roald Dahl...
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Charlie Bucket, #1) Matilda James and the Giant Peach The BFG The Witches

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“We all have our moments of brilliance and glory, and this was mine.” 200 likes
“An autobiography is a book a person writes about his own life and it is usually full of all sorts of boring details.” 50 likes
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