Having just missed one hundred books in the first year of The Book Challenge, in 2010, I made the full tonne. Still reading, but without the challenge, take a look at the reviews for the books that I have read this year.

Monday, 20 December 2010

Book 94 - My Uncle Oswald

Book - My Uncle Oswald
Author - Roald Dahl
Year - 1979
Genre - Comedy/Smut

So, you may be looking at this and thinking 'Nice one Alex, you are running out of time to reach one hundred books so now you are reading Roald Dahl to make up the numbers - the kind of book that even my kids could read'.  Unless of course you don't have kids, in which case this would be a very strange thing to be thinking.  Rest assured however, that I am not dumbing down, and if you are one of the readers with children, then please promise me that you will not introduce My Uncle Oswald as one of their bedtime stories.

The basic premise is that Oswald is telling us how he made his fortune.  He did this by discovering the world's strongest aphrodisiac.  He then found a very good looking woman, and they proceeded to use this aphrodisiac to rape most of the prominent artists, royals and writers in the world in order to steal their sperm to sell on.  Whilst rumours will continue to circulate that this was the original plot to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, suffice to say it is not the kind of book I would expect from one of the world's best loved children's authors.

Where it is remarkably similar to the books of Dahl's that I know so much better, is that it is wonderfully funny, and interesting throughout.  His descriptions of meeting Puccini, Proust and Shaw are masterpieces, as is the scheme concocted when approaching Freud.  Much as I remember being entirely engrossed in every last word of The BFG when I was a child, I was with this book.  So long as you expect to be reading it as borderline pornography, it is a book that is well worth the read, even if it just so you can describe to your friends what the Roald Dahl book you have just read is all about.

8/10

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