Silly classic is great read-aloud.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

As charming and mild as any classic fairytale.

Positive role models

Sofie is a fun, well behaved heroine with a heart of gold.

Violence & scariness

The giants eat children and bully the BFG.

Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there's no more to be concerned about here than in your average fairy tale. Giants eat kids offstage and talk about how tasty they are, which might bother very sensitive kids. The made-up language, though, will be difficult for the lower end of the target age group to read themselves, so it works best as a read-aloud.

What's the story?

One night when Sophie can't sleep, she goes to the window of her orphanage and sees a giant walking down the street, blowing something into the windows. When the giant sees her, he grabs her and takes her back to his desert cave home.

There he explains, in his strange and garbled English, that he was blowing dreams into the minds of children, and that the other giants who live in the desert -- and are twice his size -- eat children all over the world. He, though, is the Big Friendly Giant (BFG), and eats nothing but disgusting snozzcumbers. But when the other giants head to England to eat children, Sophie hatches a plan, involving dreams, the Queen of England, and the BFG, to stop them once and for all.

Is it any good?


Each of the late Roald Dahl's whoppsy-whiffling stories has some unique element that sets it apart, both from his other works and from those of anyone else. Here it's language -- sheer, unadulterated, silly playing with language. The BFG speaks most terrible wigglish -- after all, he has never been to school, and "sometimes is saying things a little squiggly." Everything he wants to say "is always getting squiff-squiddled around."

All of this babblement makes this a delightful read-aloud, both for the listener, and for the adult reader who can let go of inhibitions and have fun with the twitch-tickling wordplay. And, while your child is rolling on the floor, if you're not as quacky as a duckhound, if your head isn't full of frogsquinkers, buzzwangles, and bugwhiffles, then you'll soon understand why "upgoing bubbles is a catasterous disastrophe."

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the made-up words the author uses.

  • Can you tell how he put them together? Parents may want to encourage kids to make up words of their own.

Book details

Author:Roald Dahl
Illustrator:Quentin Blake
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date:May 21, 2006
Number of pages:208
Publisher's recommended age(s):7 - 11
Read aloud:6
Read alone:8

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  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 13 years old Written byWaluigi7 March 10, 2011


I Love this book! I enjoy it, My favorite item in the book is "Snozzcumbers" which is a icky poo veggie that the bfg eats, Funny plot, Funny names, The story is about a little orphan girl named "Sophie" where she gets taken by a giant and she thinks the giant is going to eat her but she had noticed that this giant does not eat humans, so The BFG helps her put a end to the man eating giants. I recommend it for all ages!
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 11 years old April 9, 2008

Great book!

This is an awsome book and everyone should read it!
Teen, 14 years old Written bydolphindreamer April 9, 2008

I loved this book!

This is a fabulous book! Ronald Dahl has such a creative imagination. Its a great book for all ages and it will leave you happy and laughing till your sides hurt!


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