The Witches

I read the Witches by Roald Dahl last week. I can’t recall the last time I read it, must have been over 15 years ago. But the number of times I read it as a kid were in evidence. Every single paragraph was familiar to me. Not in the ‘I know what happens next’ way, but like revisiting an old friend. Familiar, but still delightful.

Holy crow it’s a scary book though. The stuff that happens. The first few chapters have the protagonists parents being killed, and then chapter after chapter about REAL WITCHES (Dahl’s capitals) and the terrible things they do to children, followed by all the ways that make them monstrous and how to spot them.

I remember dreaming as a kid, thinking about all the women I knew who could *possibly* be Witches, and what I would do. I remember the hours and hours I tried to work out how it would feel to be girl who is trapped in a painting. Wondering how I could try and make Formula 62 Delayed Action Mouse Maker.*

The story is very basic, only taking about two days of action to play out. I really, really enjoyed it. You should read it again too.

*You can’t. Roald Dahl lists the ingredients as mostly mythical creature parts.

4 thoughts on “The Witches

  1. I remember being incredibly thrilled when I discovered that the film adaptation (which I love – Jim Henson & Nic Roeg behind the camera, Anjelica Huston & Mai Zetterling in front of it) is available without the tacked-on happy ending (which was apparently added for American audiences).

  2. I remember being fixated on how uncomfortable the Witches must be, cramming their square feet into pointy shoes – and no wonder they were crabby! *l* that and their nostrils, and the big standouts for me!

  3. He goes on and on about how awful it is to wear wigs on bald heads too. They’re always scratching at wig rash.

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