I kill giants

9781607061724 ; Illus. by JM Ken Niimura
Read for the Graphic Novels challenge

Barbara Thorson doesn’t need career day. She already has a career, that of giant-killer. She tells her teacher and class this fact, for some reason they don’t believe her. She’s regarded as a freak. And is friendless as school, until a new girl shows up while Barbara is out setting giant traps. They slowly become friends, but things don’t really improve for Barbara. Her father is absent. Her sister out at work all day, and then stressed, and a bad cook. And her mother…

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The BFG

ISBN: 9780141322629

One night, a young girl, unable to sleep makes her way to the window and spies a mysterious giant, with a suitcase and some sort of a trumpet. Discovering that he has been spotted this giant kidnaps the little girl, Sophie, and takes her off to Giant Country. There Sophie discovers that this giant, The Big Friendly Giant, is not like the other giants. He is much smaller than them for one thing, but also, they are murderers who delight in guzzling up human beans, whereas the BFG is only interested in sharing Dreams with people. Can Sophie and the BFG come up with a plan to defeat the like of The Fleshlumpeater and The Childchewer.

When I was around ten or so I went through my Roald Dahl phase. I loved his books so much. This and Danny, Champion of the World were my favourites. But that was twenty years ago. For a while I’ve been meaning to revisit the strangeness of Dahl’s imagination. Both Carl and Richard recently read his biography and put me in the mood for some Dahl, so when we got some replacement copies in at work I took the opportunity to take this one and see if it was as good as I remember.

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I just wish I had a blanket to wrap around him’

The whole country had learned through the heartfelt appeals by Robert’s parents, Mark and Majella, that their son feared the dark and, aware of that, a garda charged with preserving the scene asked Fr O’Donovan to pass on a message to the family if he thought it appropriate.

Fr O’Donovan recalled: “He said, ‘I was one of two gardaí who kept watch with Robert last night . . . I would like the parents to know that Robert wasn’t alone last night – I spoke to him all the time’; and then he concluded, ‘I just wish I had a blanket to wrap around him’.”