Sunday, October 20, 2013

Sunday Salon: Reading Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator

Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. Roald Dahl. 1972. 166 pages. [Source: Library]

I loved, loved, loved Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I never loved the sequel Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. It is quirky and odd, but it failed to delight in the same way. The plot just didn't work for me. Half the book takes place in space or on/near a space hotel--all within the glass elevator. And the other half of the novel takes place back in the factory and involves one of Wonka's inventions. The humor of the space section just did not work for me. It felt dated and off, a bit inappropriate.
The president threw the phone across the room at the Postmaster General. It hit him in the stomach. "What's the matter with this thing?" shouted the President. "It is very difficult to phone people in China, Mr. President," said the Postmaster General. "The country's so full of Wings and Wongs, every time you wing you get the wong number." "You're not kidding," said the President... The President again picked up the receiver. "Gleetings, honorable Mr. Plesident," said a soft faraway voice. "Here is Assistant Plemier Chu-On-Dat speaking. How can I do for you?" "Knock-knock," said the President. "Who der?" "Ginger." "Ginger who?" "Ginger yourself much when you fell off the Great Wall of China?" said the President. "Okay, Chu-on-Dat. Let me speak to Premier How-Yu-Bin." "Much regret Premier How-Yu-Bin not here just this second, Mr. Plesident." "Where is he?" He outside mending a flat tire on his bicycle." "Oh no, he isn't," said the President. "You can't fool me, you crafty old mandarin! At this very minute he's boarding our magnificent Space Hotel with seven other rascals to blow it up!" "Excuse pleese, Mr. Plesident. You make big mistake." "No mistake!" barked the President. "And if you don't call them off right away I'm going to tell my Chief of the Army to blow them all sky high! So chew on that, Chu-on-Dat!" "Hooray!" said the Chief of the Army. "Let's blow everyone up! Bang-bang! Bang-bang!" (30-1)
 It's not that I hated every page of this one. I just didn't find enough positives to overcome the negatives.

Have you read this one? What did you think?


© 2013 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

3 comments:

Liviania 1:06 PM  

It's been a long time since I read this one, but there's definitely a reason it isn't as famous as its predecessor.

Sally 1:20 PM  

I totally agree! I'm re-reading Charlie And The Chocolate Factory right now and plan to write a review next week. It's easily as good as I remember. But the sequel..? Not so good!

Lisa @ Bookshelf Fantasies 3:12 PM  

I didn't remember all of this from my childhood, but when I went to read this book w/my son recently, I couldn't get past the chapter you quote from! I actually had to stop in my tracks while reading, and decided that I just couldn't keep going -- so inappropriate, at least today. Yet we loved Charlie & the Chocolate Factory and so many other Roald Dahl books. I guess some things really don't hold up over time.

Post a Comment

I'm always happy to hear from you! To help fight spam, comment moderation has been set up for posts older than two days. Feel free to ask me questions or ask for recommendations!

Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

Unique Visitors and Google PR Rank

Free PageRank Checker

Pageloads Counter

Search Book Blogs Search Engine

The background is based on a background I found here...with some small adjustments on my part so it would work with the template.
Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

  © Blogger template Newspaper III by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP