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Book Synopsis

Roald Dahl’s much-loved Matilda has become a classic children’s story, made popular through film and musical adaptations.

Matilda Wormwood’s father thinks she’s a little scab. Matilda’s mother spends all afternoon playing bingo. And Matilda’s headmistress Miss Trunchbull? Well, she’s the worst of all. She is a big bully, who thinks all her pupils are rotten and locks them in the dreaded Chokey. As for Matilda, she’s an extraordinary little girl with a magical mind – and now she’s had enough. So all these grown-ups had better watch out, because Matilda is going to teach them a lesson they’ll never forget.

Our Review Panel says...

Matilda by Roald Dahl has earned its place as a classic of children’s literature, with the character of Matilda being iconic. The story has seen popularity for decades, boosted by two film versions and a hit musical.

Matilda, who is unusually smart and self-sufficient for her age, is ignored and undervalued at home, and mistreated at times. When she starts school, she befriends a kind teacher called Miss Honey – the first person to ever take the time to appreciate and understand book-loving Matilda. Meanwhile, a cruel and villainous headmistress called Miss Trunchball casts a dark shadow over Matilda’s school. Matilda harnesses her inner powers and with a little help from her friends, begins a revolution that will soon see the children empowered and Miss Trunchbull’s dark regime overturned.

Roald Dahl is the master of creating devious villains and Miss Trunchbull is one of his most memorable, here representing the repressive forces in Matilda’s life that threatened to dampen the lamp of childhood joy. There’s something thrilling in seeing Matilda’s mastery of her telekinetic powers and her quiet ways of outsmarting the adults who wrong her. The edge of magical realism provides balance and comic relief against the more serious aspects of Matilda’s mistreatment.

In true Dahl style, the resolution is happy for the protagonist and the villains get their just desserts.

This book is available on these booklists:

Matilda: KS2 Lesson Pack

A lesson planning resource pack provided by the publisher to accompany the book Matilda.



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