Roald Dahl’s “Matilda” Turns 30

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“So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea.” That quote and many others extolling the virtues of reading great books comes from Roald Dahl’s Matilda. Originally published on October 1, 1988, Dahl’s now-classic tale of a gifted girl cursed with horrible parents and a tyrannical headmistresses was an immediate success. Receiving the Children’s Book Award in 1989, becoming a major motion picture in 1996, and inspiring the 2010 musical adaptation, Matilda is perhaps Dahl’s best-selling book, with over 17 million copies in print.
Collectors should head to British rare bookseller Peter Harrington who is offering six first editions of Matilda. “In recent years, Matilda has become our top-selling book,” explained Peter Harrington’s son and current owner, Pom. “Matilda is a fabulous spirited girl and the book is loved by adults and children alike.”
Among the six copies offered for sale are two inscribed first editions, one being a presentation copy with, “To all the Briggs, with love, Roald. 9/4/88” at the front. Michael Briggs had operated on Dahl’s spine in 1978, after which the men became good friends. This copy is available for £4,000 ($5,300). The second inscribed copy, available for for £3,500 ($4,630) reads: “Camilla, love Roald Dahl.”

 

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Additionally, Penguin Random House will be releasing special editions of the book on October 4 with new cover images by the book’s original illustrator, Quentin Blake. Each of the three covers features a grown-up Matilda as an astrophysicist, a world traveler, and Chief Executive of the British Library. These 30th anniversary editions are available for pre-order starting at $17.99.

 

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Images: (Top and Middle) Courtesy of Peter Harrington; (Bottom) Courtesy of the British Library Shop.

Beatrix Potter’s Forgotten Tale Published at Last

@penguinrandomhouse @beatrixpotter (via Beatrix Potter’s Forgotten Tale Published at Last – The Fine Books Blog)

(Children’s) BookNotes, Wednesday, June 8, 2016

What do Beatrix Potter, Helen Mirren, QE2, Eric Carle, and Winnie-the-Pooh have in common? They all made news this week in the world of children’s books. Read on! 

 @ericcarle @GuardianBooks 
@GalleyCat 

@penguinkids 

@finebooks

From The Guardian: Eric Carle talks about how children identify with the helpless, small, insignificant caterpillar

From Galley Cat: Disney celebrates Queen Elizabeth II’s birthday with a new Winnie-the-Pooh story.

The BBC reports that Helen Mirren is slated to narrate the audiobook version of Beatrix Potter’s The Tale of Kitty-in-Boots, a story rediscovered after 100 years.

(Children’s) BookNotes, May 31, 2016

@PolisBooks @Redwood_Digital  @PublishersWkly @nzbookcouncil

@BFGMovie @roald_dahl @vanityfair

A children’s book author admits to using a ghostwriter, a banned book in New Zealand makes its debut stateside, and moviegoers prepare for the film adaptation of the BFG, this week in children’s book news.

Six-time Olympic gold medalist Chris Hoy admits using a ghostwriter for his children’s book, pointing to a larger trend of celebrities cashing in on their fame by authoring books for kids. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/05/31/chris-hoy-admits-using-ghostwriter-for-new-childrens-book/ (See last week’s story about Simon Cowell here)

Self-published author Ted Dawe’s Into the River will be released in North America on June 14 by Polis Books. Originally published in 2012 in New Zealand, the book was banned due to racy sex scenes and obscene language. Publisher’s Weekly traces the book’s story here.

Roald Dahl’s classic The BFG will hit theaters in July. Read Richard Lawson’s review in Vanity Fair.