I have been so excited for the last few weeks, ever since a golden ticket landed on my doorstep. It was the next best thing to visiting Mr Wonka’s factory – an invitation to the celebration at Puffin books. Despite the awful weather and a tube strike quite a few people made their way to the Strand in order to raise a glass (and some chocolates) to wish Charlie and co. a very happy 50th birthday.
The wonderful Adele Minchin from Puffin books hosted the event and we were then treated to a discussion between Luke Kelly, the grandson of Roald Dahl and Lucy Mangan, critic and author of a new book about the history of Charlie (coming out in the autumn). The talk ranged from the number of times Dahl was turned down by publishers to the way that the illustrations have changed since the original publication. I must admit that I had not realized that it came out in the USA before it was accepted in the UK!
With several of Dahl’s books now adapted for the stage and the number of film adaptations we have seen growing by the year, I think that his work will be available for all to enjoy for many years to come. However it is in the books that we see the real magic of Dahl and none of these other versions can take the place of reading the actual works, so go on, a Dahl a day keeps the blues away.