Matilda is turning 25 this year! Kind of unbelievable, right? How can it already be 25 years since this wonderfully witty, intelligent five-year-old sprang onto the literary scene, inspiring all of us to read more and fight the man with our powers of telekinesis (Er, or just wish we had powers of telekinesis)? We’re celebrating this milestone with an epic 25-stop blog tour! Follow along to find out how your favorite bloggers feel about Matilda, and for a chance to win a Matilda prize pack at each and every stop!
This quote says it all:
“Matilda said, ‘I would like a really good one that grown-ups read. A famous one. I don’t know any names.’
Mrs. Phelps looked along the shelves, taking her time. She didn’t quite know what to bring out. How, she asked herself, does one choose a famous grown-up book for a four-year-old girl? Her first thought was to pick a young teenager’s romance of the kind that is written for fifteen-year-old schoolgirls, but for some reason she found herself walking past that particular shelf.
‘Try this,’ she said at last, ‘It’s very famous and very good. If it’s too long for you, just let me know and I’ll find something shorter and a bit easier.’
‘Great Expectations,’ Matilda read, ‘by Charles Dickens. I’d love to try it.’
I must be mad, Mrs. Phelps told herself, but to Matilda she said, ‘Of course you may try it.’ –p.15, Matilda
That’s the key, isn’t it? Teachers and librarians foster a love of books in students by introducing them to new books and helping them stretch their limits. Every Wednesday, hear from teachers and librarians on the Matilda 25th Anniversary tour about how they have interacted with kids and books, just like Mrs. Phelps helped Matilda!
When I was in fourth grade, my class read James and the Giant Peach. I loved the book so much, that I wrote a letter to the author, Roald Dahl, not knowing he had passed away. The publisher ended up sending me a box of Roald Dahl goodies-stickers, posters, and a mobile of his characters! It meant so much to me as a reader that they would take time to answer a young girls fan letter.
That's one thing I love about being a librarian. It it my job to help kids find the most perfect book-and often times that includes books by Roald Dahl. His creativity and wit is still as popular as ever. When readers come into the library looking for something funny and smart, I always take them over to the D's and introduce them to this author. It makes my job even better when I get to match readers with books they will love, and I get to do that wit Matilda. Books like Matilda have lasted 25 years because they hold an endless appeal-which makes it easy for me to suggest that book to a reader. I know they're in for a treat when they pick it up and enter Matilda's world! And I love being one of the gatekeepers who have helped them discover what great books are out there. When they come back with a smile on their face and tell me how much they loved a book I've given them, it makes my job all worth it.
I'm so excited to be able to share Matilda with you! Thanks to Penguin books and Matilda the Musical, one lucky winner will win a Matilda prize pack: a paperback copy of Matilda , one copy of the Matilda Broadway soundtrack, and a Matilda the Musical Broadway poster!
To enter, leave a comment below telling me what book a librarian or teacher helped introduce you to as a child. Contest open to US addresses only, ages 13+, ends June 26.
Did you know Matilda is now a Tony Award-nominated Broadway Musical? The show opened in April and has already been nominated for 12 Tony Awards, including Best Musical! Since not everyone can go to New York City to see the show in person, Penguin Teen is bringing the show to you with a Matilda the Musical prize pack giveaway! Enter to win a copy of the Matilda the Musical soundtrack, a Matilda the Musical poster, and a paperback copy of Matilda by Roald Dahl! You can buy tickets, see pictures, and listen to music from Matilda the Musical on their website: http://us.matildathemusical.
About Roald Dahl:
Roald Dahl (1916-1990) was born in Llandaff, South Wales, and went to Repton School in England. His parents were Norwegian, so holidays were spent in Norway. As he explains in Boy, he turned down the idea of university in favor of a job that would take him to "a wonderful faraway place.” In 1933 he joined the Shell Company, which sent him to Mombasa in East Africa. When World War II began in 1939 he became a fighter pilot and in 1942 was made assistant air attaché in Washington, where he started to write short stories. His first major success as a writer for children was in 1964. Thereafter his children's books brought him increasing popularity, and when he died children mourned the world over. Matilda was published just two years before he died. Quentin Blake, the first Children's Laureate of the United Kingdom, has illustrated most of Roald Dahl's children's books.
About Matilda: Matilda is a genius. Unfortunately, her family treats her like a dolt. Her crooked car-salesman father and loud, bingo-obsessed mother think Matilda's only talent is as a scapegoat for everything that goes wrong in their miserable lives. But it's not long before the sweet and sensitive child decides to fight back. Faced with practical jokes of sheer brilliance, her parents don't stand a chance.
Matilda applies her untapped mental powers to rid the school of the evil, child-hating headmistress, Miss Trunchbull, and restore her nice teacher, Miss Honey, to financial security.
Be sure to visit the Official Matilda Facebook page to keep up with all things Matilda!
To find out more about Matilda the Musical on Broadway, visit their Facebook page!
For the next stop on the Matilda 25th Anniversary blog tour, head to Bookshelf Banter tomorrow!