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Love from Boy: Roald Dahl's Letters to his Mother

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  424 ratings  ·  88 reviews
'Dear Mama, I am having a lovely time here. We play football every day here. The beds have no springs...'

So begins the first letter that nine-year-old Roals Dahl penned to his mother, Sofie Magdalene, under the watchful eye of his boarding -school headmaster. For most of his life, Roald Dahl would continue to write weekly letters to his mother, chronicling his adventures,
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Hardcover, 304 pages
Published by John Murray (first published April 1st 2016)
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3.93  · 
Rating details
 ·  424 ratings  ·  88 reviews


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Bettie☯
May 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: BBC Radio Listeners
Recommended to Bettie☯ by: Laura
BOTW

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07ctt0s

Description: n the centenary year of his birth, Roald Dahl's letters to his mother are newly collected by Donald Sturrock and abridged for radio by Katrin Williams. The author's words to Sofie Magdalene spanned decades..



Episode 1: At Repton School in the 1930's he reported back on jolly japes, and asked 'Mama' to ask his sister to feed his mouse.. ["our house colours are black and blue"]

Episode 2: With Royal Shell he enjoyed postings to exotic places
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Laura
May 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Bettie, Wanda
From BBC radio 4 - Book of the Week:
In the centenary year of his birth, Roald Dahl's letters to his mother are newly collected by Donald Sturrock and abridged for radio by Katrin Williams. The author's words to Sofie Magdalene spanned decades..

1/5: At Repton School in the 1930's he reported back on jolly japes, and asked 'Mama' to ask his sister to feed his mouse.

2/5: With Royal Shell he enjoyed postings to exotic places and reported back on mambas, giraffes, and the occasional flying fish. All
...more
Quirkyreader
Jul 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received this from Penguin as an ARC. This book gives a good insight to what Dahl's life was like growing up and what finally influenced him to become a writer. I enjoy all of his writing, both children and adult stories. Reading this epistle gives me even more appreciation to his stories.

There aren't too many vulgar words, so this book can be read aloud to children with the fbombs and sbombs changed to something else.

It is a wonderful collection that will go well on the shelf with the other
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Kirsty
Apr 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: april-2018
I really enjoyed Donald Sturrock's biography of Roald Dahl, Storyteller, when I read it a couple of years ago. I was thus very excited to read Love From Boy: Roald Dahl's Letters to His Mother, which Sturrock edited. Whilst on yet another (largely unsuccessful) book-buying ban at the time of purchase, Love From Boy looked far too lovely to pass up when I spotted a single copy in Fopp.

From his early childhood, when he was sent away to boarding school, Roald Dahl sent one letter each week to his N
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Jessica White
Jun 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reading these letters was like looking into the mastermind behind one of the world's greatest children's authors. Roald Dahl is widely recognized as the author Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, James and the Giant Peach, The BFG, and Matilda. But what many people don't know is the life he had before he put pen to paper. It all started in 1925, when he was nine years old. He began writing letters to his mother from boarding school. His over-imaginative mind was already churning when he told her ...more
JoLee
Roald Dahl's autobiographical books, Boy: Tales of Childhood and Going Solo, are my absolute favorite Roald Dahl books. So, when I heard about this new collection of letters set to be published in conjunction with Dahl's 100th birthday on September 13th, I knew I wanted to read it.

Love from Boy: Roald Dahl's Letters to His Mother is, as the title indicates, a collection of letters that were written by the author to his mother. Dahl wrote to his mother consistently from the time he left for
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Zivile
Aug 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received an early copy from Penguin's First Readers program.

I didn't know much about Roald Dahl before, until recently I read my first book by him: "My Uncle Oswald", which was written at the end of his life, and it's a very sexualized story. Then I learnt he's the author of well known children books and I was very confused. Until I read this book.
It's an unintended epistolary autography which turned out to be a more exciting biography of Dahl than it could ever be.
The first letters are from
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Yordan Dimov
Mar 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Издадени по случай 100-годишнината от рождението на Роалд Дал, писмата ни позволяват да видим как се заражда фантастичното въображение, създало едни от най-четените детски книги в света. Благодарение на достъпа, който е получил до архивите на Роалд Дал, официалният му биограф Доналд Стърок, успява да ни го покаже така, както малцина са го познавали преди.. чрез собствените му думи!
Майсторски поднесена биография на много любим автор!
Jade
May 04, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: bookclub, 2017
This is a collection of letters written from Roald Dahl to his mother, mainly from his school years until his early 50s. Each section includes an introduction by the author as to Roald's life at that time. The later letters are sparse and therefore do not have any link to his children's books, which he started in his mid forties.

The disappointing part of this book is that these letters really could have been from any boy to his mother. I did get some good factual knowledge about Dahl along the w
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Lukerik
Oct 10, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: letters
I don’t read many collections of letters due to the very great boredom factor, but this is very enjoyable. Very well edited. All the letters are interesting in one way or another, the book’s the right length and between each section of letters Sturrock provides text which fills in the back story. A quick read and rather startling to have a man flying a fighter plane who only a few pages before was asking his mother for conkers. Dahl’s personality really shines through, but even if you’re not int ...more
Nicole
Apr 21, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The review in the Times made the letters sound like they would be both entertaining and enlightening. They weren't either. Just skimmed along the surface of an upper class life at the end of empire. Perhaps his mother's letters would have been more interesting if saved. For a little book, this became a slog to get through
Leah
Though I enjoyed this one immensely, many of the letters felt as though they could have come from any boy away at school or any soldier writing home, especially since so many were censored. I think a casual fan might not find this collection as interesting as I did.

For the mini review and more, head over to The Pretty Good Gatsby!
Olga Vannucci
Aug 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fighter pilot, diplomat,
Wrote his mother much chit chat.
Lisa
Nov 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An delightful story compiled of letters Roald Dahl wrote to his mother over the course of his life. The strong bond between mother and son flows through the letters despite the years and distance apart. Roald grows from a boy to a man. The journey moves from Roald defending his country to becoming a successful writer. A captivating read!
Benedikte
"Dear mama
(...)
I had a grand shit in a petrol tin this morning with 3 other blokes doing the same within a space of 4 yards. One of them suddenly leapt up, shrieking, 'Gor - a fuckin' scorpion's got me balls!"

(brief geschreven in de woestijn, 26/04/1940)

Roald Dahl was 9 toen hij voor het eerst een brief aan zijn moeder Sofie Magdalene richtte. Wat begon als een fait divers, groeide door de jaren uit tot een lijvige collectie brieven. Daarin vertelde Dahl keer op keer op een ongedwongen, spontane
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Caitlin
Aug 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
Free book from Penguin First to Read in exchange for an honest review.

A collection of the (mostly) weekly letters Dahl wrote to his mother, beginning when he was nine at boarding school, and continuing to not long before her death. Collected to tell the highlights of his life, these letters span the globe as well as the years, showing Dahl's development as a person and as a writer. Full of mentions of loved ones, dirty jokes, and amusing stories, the letters are only one side of his life--the mo
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Debbie Phillips
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone - High School to Adult
I loved this book... it is about one of my favorite people. I love that Roald Dahl wrote to his mother all his life. Some of his life I already knew about from his two biographies. I was very interested in reading about his later life after the RAF when he was working in America for the British Embassy.

I have one quote to share... it is about his mother...
"Sophie Magdalene was a remarkable mother. She was calm. She stayed behind the scenes. She sought no public acknowledgement of the sacrifices
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Emma
Aug 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*Disclaimer: I received an early copy of this book through Penguin's First to Read program.*

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I tend to really like stories told through correspondence, and even though we only saw one side of the conversation, I think it was a lively and interesting tale. I learned so much about a beloved author (Roald did SO MUCH STUFF before he became a writer that I never knew about!), and I thought it was an interesting dialogue on the era in which he grew up and lived most of
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April Harvey
Aug 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*I received an ARC from Penguin's First to Read in exchange for an honest review*

I think like a lot of others my first introduction to Mr. Dahl came in the form of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I have almost all of his children's books but my favorite has always been Matilda.
I now know that a large part of this story was actually based on his own experience at a boarding school. This book is all about the letters that Roald sent to his mother starting at age 9 when he was attending the scho
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Cheryl
Feb 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am not particularly a fan of Roald Dahl's writing. His children's books sounded "wrong" to me in perspective and humor, but I realize that I am in the minority. This book of letters written to his mother from the time he was an unhappy boarding school student to decades later as a famous author were still fascinating. I marveled at how Dahl moved from being a rather ordinary boy to dining with President Roosevelt and marrying a movie star. His life was certainly marked by amazing highs and low ...more
Christina
May 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Charming, sweet, honest letters to Roald's Mom.

Here is a good review. Enjoy.
https://www.theguardian.com/books/201...
Caroline Doab
Dec 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
This is such an amazing view into Roald D'ahl's life.

I implore any D'ahl fan to have a read of this, his letters to him mother are amazing and very detailed, and also give a great insight into his amazing life.
Marcella
Sep 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely fantastic!
Yoshi
Sep 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jacques
Mar 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interessante briefwisseling uit de periode 1925-1965 van Roald Dahl met Sofie Magdalene, zijn moeder. Dahl is sterk in het bochtenwerk als het gaat om haar gerust te stellen. Dat blijkt al uit zijn brieven uit de erg strenge kostschool en later na uit zijn verhaal van een vliegcrash waarvan hij slechts gedeeltelijk herstelde. Verder tonen zijn berichten de bezorgdheid om zijn tijdens W.O.II in Engeland verblijvende familie. Sofie Magdalene blijft hem aanzetten tot fantaseren en schrijven. Roald ...more
Sojourner
Jul 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviews
The question that immediately came to mind was, what’s in a letter? And who is Roald Dahl that we should spend money to buy a book about his letters to his mother. Then I realized who he was. Roald Dahl was no ordinary guy. He was a hugely successful British novelist and writer of children’s books which have sold over 250 million copies worldwide. He is best remembered for the fabulous Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and also Matilda, which some have described as the best children’s books of a ...more
Emesskay
Mar 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is easy to think we know Roald Dahl based on his many children's books. However, he had a whole other life before he became a writer, and during that time he wrote letters home to his family. His mother saved his letters, and this book features a selection of them. It is interesting to see his personality developing into the man he became. He also had a pretty extra-ordinary life - working in East Africa for Shell Oil, then becoming a RAF pilot in North Africa in WWII - then crashing and a li ...more
Nick Davies
Jan 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
This was interesting and absorbing without ever being quite as entertaining as I perhaps unreasonably expected. As a collection of Dahl’s letters to his mother over a colourful and changing first three decades of the author’s life, it is a well-chosen and well-contextualised variety, offering significant insight into the man, though admittedly with a niggling sense that self-editing makes this a less honest and less complete work than a diary (though perhaps less contrived than autobiography or ...more
Sally
Jan 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A biography of the fascinating life of Roald Dahl, presented largely through his letters to his mother -- from a young boy in boarding school through his service in WWII, his professional career in diplomatic service and as a budding writer. There is so much more behind the man than his quirky literary characters. The letters provide insight into Dahl's unique personality and his honest and loving relationship with his mother and other family members. The narrative explanations accompanying the ...more
Terry Clague
Fascinating collection of letters from Roald Dahl to his mother which make for a partial biography of the legendary writer - made all the more intriguing by the one-sided nature and the relative lack of discussion of his written work. You do get a good sense of his storytelling developing and he name drops with the best of them owing to a remarkable stint in the US during the war in which he worked with Walt Disney and weekended with the Eisenhowers. In the same period he reported back on a few ...more
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The Roald Dahl Bo...: "Love from Boy" 1 3 Sep 23, 2016 03:18AM  
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DONALD STURROCK is an award-winning TV film producer and a librettist who has been the artistic director of the Roald Dahl Foundation since 1992. He grew up in England and South America, attended Oxford University, and joined BBC Television’s Music and Arts Department in 1983. In 1995 Sturrock directed an acclaimed BBC television version of his own adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Little Red Riding Hood ...more
“On Wednesday we got off work to go welcome King George V and his wife. ... Quite fun seeing George and spouse, but event the old boy himself didn't arouse in me those instincts which prompted a woman on my right to fling her arms around Hooper as the King came passed, exclaiming “the King! the King!” much to the embarrassment of uncomfortable Hooper, whose face took on the delicate hues of some of the finer beetroots which, by the way, can be bough quite cheaply at any grocer, green of course.” 0 likes
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