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Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang #1)

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  6,949 ratings  ·  365 reviews
Ian Fleming, best known for his James Bond novels, wrote only one children’s book—and it is a classic! Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is the name of the flying, floating, driving-by-itself automobile that takes the Pott family on a riotous series of adventures as they try to capture a notorious gang of robbers. This is a story filled with humor, adventure, and gadgetry that only ...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published April 26th 2005 by Random House Books for Young Readers (first published 1964)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jason Koivu
"I'm not interested in your Shitty Shitty Gang Bang," is essentially what I told my bestbud back in elementary school when he was trying with all his ernest might to make me see the light and enjoy the wholesome, family-fun goodness that is this book. This was at a time when he was listening to Weird Al and I was learning how to bang my head to Quiet Riot.

Fast-forward about 30 years…I've finally read Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and I see the light! This book is delightful! There's kooky characters,

Once upon a time there was a young boy named Jonathan Terrington. He didn't have any magical abilities save for the power of his imagination and what he could gain from reading and watching incredible movies. Some of his favourite childhood movies and books were all fairytales. He particularly liked more modern 'fairytales' like Toy Story or Mulan. Then one day he discovered a fairytale movie he'd never watched before. A movie about a magical car that travelled away to a fascinating land with b
Jul 26, 2007 Lynn rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: boys
Shelves: childrens
What a surprise to find just how different the movie is from the book! This is very much Ian Flemming, focused on the car and the adventure. There is no 'Truly Scrumptious'; there is no weird castle with singing toys and a king who hates kids. There IS a wonderful magical car, and exact descriptions of what it does. There IS a great adventure with a trip to France and a scary thief. A great book for boys, and it stands the test of time.

This was Ian Flemming's last book before he died, and his on
Jun 29, 2013 Mark marked it as sayin-when  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't sit through the Disney adaptation of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, but I remember it from my childhood. I also remember trying Mary Poppins and I didn't like that one either. But I'm big on nostalgia. Remembering them good ole days, them calmer days. A few years ago I revisited The Wind in the Willows, which I'm told Mom read to me as a kid and we both hated. When I revisited, I was enthralled. I don't think it was simply nostalgia. Sure it brought back memories of summertime and warm gras ...more
James Bond, the children's book begat James Bond, the musical begat James Bond, the stage show. But where can we go from here? It occurred to me to google "James Bond Ballet", and I did at least find this picture:


Surely it's now just a matter of time before it actually happens?

Glenn Whelan
Fun with our fine four fendered friend...

Most people that would be reading this book today are familiar with the Dick Van Dyke vehicle of the same name. A smaller percentage of them may also be aware that the source material is originally penned by James Bond author Ian Fleming. The connection to 007 seems a logical one. A flying car with super gadgets called upon at the press of a button. Who else but James bond could have a relationship with a woman named Truly Scrumptious.

After a quick read o
May 18, 2013 Chris rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: i-own
I watched the movie Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang as a child and have vaguely fun and yet confusing memories of it. To this day I still find some of the tunes from the movie jumping into my head at random. Years later I was told that the original book Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang was written by Ian Fleming...yes, the same Ian Fleming who was the creator of James Bond. Naturally my curiosity was aroused. From a very high level, it's not surprising to see both James Bond and Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang as being ...more
Rick Fisher
The original novel is so completely different from the movie I love and have watched numerous times. So, I was surprised and a little disappointed.
It's a cute little story. Several main characters are still in there, if a bit different. The father, Caractacus Pott, is an inventor but also an ex navy officer. The children, Jeremy and Jemima, are wide eyed and adventurous. Unfortunately, there is no Truly Scrumptous. Instead, there is a wife/mother, Mimsie. She is practical and a bit matronly.
Colin Kinlund
May 13, 2007 Colin Kinlund rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone who wanted a flying car
Another classic I treasured, and another Disney adaptation I loathed. The movie is similar to the book in that there is a car with the given name of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. In fairness though, this is a very short story, with only three chapters (each fairly long chapter being one act), and would have been very difficult to do as a movie. But still, this is vastly more entertaining, inventive and scary than the movie. And I still want a toot-sweet to this day.
Jerry Peterson
It's hard to believe that Ian Fleming, who wrote the sexy, sophisticated, violent James Bond spy novels, also wrote one of the best-loved children's stories, "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang". Most of us know it from the 1968 movie musical that starred Dick Van Dyke. Fleming wrote "Chitty Chitty" while he was recovering from a heart attack in 1961. The writing provided him with something to do. For inspiration, Fleming drew on a bedtime story he had been telling his son, Caspar.

The book came out in 1964
"She's a twelve-cylinder, eight-litre, supercharged Paragon Panther. They only made one of them and then the firm went broke. This is the only one in the world."

And there we have it, our introduction to the most wonderful car in the world : CHITTY CHITTY BANG BANG (CCBB).

This original story written by the legendary Ian Fleming (creator of James Bond) is a rare and winsome treat. As children, we loved the film and the fantastical adventures of Caractacus Pott, Truly Scrumptious, Jeremy and Jemim
We've run into this problem before: First it was a novel. Then it was adapted, more successfully than faithfully, into a movie. Then came a film novelization, a novel designed to be more faithful to the movie than the movie was to the original novel. They did it to Pierre Boulle's Planet of the Apes. More recently, it happened to Cressida Cowell's How to Train Your Dragon. It even happened to another book by Ian Fleming. And so your dilemma is this: which book do you buy or borrow, to read or gi ...more
Callie Rose Tyler
Once again I find out that a movie from my childhood is nothing like the book.

This book was nicely written and I enjoyed the tone of the narration but it is so vastly different from the movie that I was left disappointed.

The movie is fantastically whimsical and magical. The book is not. In the first half of the book it seems like we are going to get magic and whimsy with the Scrumptious whistle sweets that Caractacus Potts invents and the cheeky flying car. However, the book then takes on more o
Penny Peck
The new follow-up to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang by Frank Cottrell Boyce, sent me back to original to see how they compare. I was struck by the brevity – the original Chitty is 114 pages in length, written in three long chapters. The original British version was actually published in three volumes. The U.S. version also had plenty of ink illustrations, something that would be welcome in more novels for readers in grades 3 to 6. Roald Dahl’s books also had a fair amount of random illustrations in eac ...more
What person of a certain age doesn't remember the marvelous movie and magical car?! And the final scene as everyone hangs onto their hats and soars through the air singing ...

Oh you pretty Chitty Bang Bang,
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
We love you.
And, in
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
What we'll do.
Near, far, in our motor car Oh what a happy time we'll spend.
Bang Bang Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Our fine four fendered friend.
Bang Bang Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Our fine four fendered friend.

I read this as a young 'un and didn't find out until MUCH later that the author also wrote all the James Bond books! Once you know that, the presence of international spies, gelignite, and a car with superpowers make perfect sense. I like to think the car was a prototype designed by Q that somehow accidentally ended up getting sold for scrap :)

Apart from the car, the children and their father, the book shares nothing whatsoever with the Disney version, but it's equally entertaining and great fun
I listened to the unabridged audiobook narrated by David Tennant. It's everything that's wonderful about Ian Fleming, without any of the rapiness. Explosions, international villainy, sweet technology, high-speed chases, lots of adventure...all without any raping.

I've never seen the movie or the musical of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, but other adults tell methey aren't great. The book is 100% a charmer, though. And there's a recipe for fudge at the end.
Jennifer Hughes
I must be one of the few of my generation that has never seen this, and my expectations going into the book were fairly low. I thought it would be a cutsie kids' book and that's all. I found that I was listening to the audiobook by myself in the car, looking forward to the next time I had to run errands or something so I could listen to it again!

It's a kids' book for sure, but it's just a delightful and engaging and innocent story. The actor who read it (can't remember his name--from "Fawlty To
Maggie Wolfe Riley
This book was my first experience with loving a book, then being horribly disappointed in the movie. I read this book before it was a movie - something like 4th grade, and I loved it! Fun, adventure, mystery, and good writing (to my 9 or 10 year old mind, anyway!) Then I remember being excited that they were making a movie of it - and imagine my disappointment when it was a ~musical~ starring Dick van Dyke! It wasn't anything ~like~ the book, and they not only changed the plot, they changed the ...more
So . . . apparently the only think the movie and the book have in common is . . . a flying car named Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Interesting.

*realigns brain* *dismisses childhood memories* *tries to avoid singing Toot Sweet song*

Okay, actually the candy is in there. But not Truly Scrumptious.

This is quite a good little book. It reminds me of Roald Dahl, though not quite as whimsical. There's a good bit of Edward Eager in there, too. It was a fun read-aloud, though the four-year-old wasn't as into i
I love the movie Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and I had been told that the book is not like the movie, but the book is almost nothing like the movie. The only traits that are the same are the character's names and the whistling candy. Unlike the movie, the book is the story of a car that truly does fly and float and everything else. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is more personified in the book than the movie. I don't want to give the impression that I disliked the book; I didn't. It just wasn't what I was ...more
This is maybe the best illustration I know of of a case where the book is better than the movie. I saw the movie a couple years after I read the book as a child, and it was just terrible, and nothing like the book; it was almost like it wasn't even based on the book, and I'm glad Ian Fleming never saw it because he would have gone on some kind of violent rampage.
The book tells the story of the struggling Pott family whose fortunes take a sharp upswing when Commander Pott invents hard candy you c
Young Mensans
CHITTY CHITTY BANG BANG is a story about a magical car and it’s capabilities.

One day, Commander Caractacus Pott came up with a “sweet” invention and sold it to Skrumshus Limited for 1000 pounds. Because of this mammoth sum of money, Commander Pott decided it would be time for the family of four, Commander Pott himself, Mimsie Pott, Jeremy Pott, and Jemima Pott, to all get a motor car! This was a big deal, as it would be for any family. The car that Commander Pott had in mind was different than
I was curious about Fleming's kids story, having read all the Bond books years back and with vague memories of the (rather different) film. He sets out a fun little story with an awfully British flavour and a touch of magic as the Pott family get up to mischief with their new enchanted car.

I have to say, the story was a little humdrum, combining odd adventures with stupid behaviour and outcomes: what's the first thing you do after escaping from an international crime cartel whose arms cache you
John Mccullough
Well, OK, I'm WAY too old to read this but sometimes I read books to keep up with the grandkids and in this case, it was nostalgia and my daughter's birthday that prompted me to read it. I am going to send this to her along with a copy of the movie. When she was 2 years old the movie came out and we took her to see it. When it ended she cried, then cried all the way home because it had ended and she loved it so much. I didn't blame her - it was a very entertaining movie. But, the book. Well, the ...more
Having seen the movie with Dick Van Dyke a very long time ago and enjoyed it, I came across an original hardback version of this and thought I read it to my children. However, it quickly became apparent that it just wasn't exciting enough to keep their interest, so I finished it off by myself.

We begin by meeting Caractacus 'Crack' Pott and his happy family. After creating a delightful candy and making some extra money, the family decides to purchase a car. They find a dilapidated jalopy and qui
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was a great children's story. It's a fantastic book for younger readers; the language is simple, the plot is fun and interesting, and the length is good for a student just taking on chapter books.

Despite its simplicity, I'd recommend Chitty Chitty Bang Bang to anyone, since it was such a cute read. Especially fun for long car trips where you yell out CHITTY CHITTY BANG BANG every time the car is mentioned.
Joann Bloxsom
It was a fun read that my 6 year old really enjoyed.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
My family listened to this on the road trip to St Louis and loved it. The story is perfect for a car full of boys, with lots of details about inventions and the features of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, not to mention the discovery of a stash of guns and bombs. The man who reads the book does a nice job of reading in a way that is really entertaining to kids. It's perfect long car ride material.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Ian Lancaster Fleming was a British author, journalist and Second World War Navy Commander. Fleming is best remembered for creating the character of James Bond and chronicling his adventures in twelve novels and nine short stories. Additionally, Fleming wrote the children's story Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and two
More about Ian Fleming...

Other Books in the Series

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (4 books)
  • Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Flies Again (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, #2)
  • Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the Race Against Time (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, #3)
  • Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Over the Moon (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, #4)
Casino Royale (James Bond, #1) From Russia With Love (James Bond, #5) Goldfinger (James Bond, #7) Live and Let Die (James Bond #2) Moonraker (James Bond, #3)

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