JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH by Roald Dahl
Updated: Feb 25
I think I finally found a book where I actually prefer the movie adaptation over the original.
Now, don't get me wrong, the book wasn't bad. I just didn't feel it was good either. It was just okay - whereas I love the movie. I actually chose to read this book because of the fact that I loved the movie so much. I knew the book would be different of course, but I didn't realize I would prefer the changes made to it in the movie.
For one thing, the book seemed to have no discernible plot. It was just one thing after another and then they just happened to land in New York City. While some people may try to point out that some of my favorite books seem almost plotless themselves, I would disagree. This book just seemed to have no purpose in moving forward. Once James and the party of bugs got away from Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker, there was really no driving force to keep the plot moving.
And that's another thing - the book was a lot darker than the movie was. I was expecting a more kid-friendly novel. The one I got had cursing, death, and grotesque imagery (not the illustrations - I mean some of the images that the text put in your head). I definitely wasn't expecting that kind of thing from a book that is usually marketed towards children. Then again, maybe children's books were laxer in restrictions when Dahl wrote this? I'm not sure.
I guess I just liked that the movie was more thought out. There was a plot to it - you knew where the gang was going, why, and why it was important. The book had none of these things. I know it's not right to compare the two, but I just felt like, for once, the movie did the right thing over the book.
Overall, as I said, it was just an okay read. Nothing spectacular and not something I would read again.