Scary Reading: James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl

Just yesterday, I posed a question to my FB friends. I wanted to know if they thought that a reading on the Triangle Factory fire of 1911 was a bit too heavy for my 8.5 year old.


For the most part, they thought that it was fine. So, we’ll read it, as it is a very important lesson in American history, as well as a lesson in safety in public places.

But then, I read two chapters of James and the Giant Peach. Jiminy Christmas! Talk about dark!


Yes, I’ve only read two chapters of it, and I am already judging the book. What kind of lesson are you trying to teach a kid when you tell him that parents get eaten by a rhinoceros? What kind of lesson is the fact that two aunts physically abuse and neglect that orphan?

I know, I know; I probably haven’t yet arrived at the “lesson.” However, I’ve read two chapters already. If I’ve already formed an impression, I am sure that kids have, too.

Yes, horrible things happen in real life. However, not every horrible thing that happens has a lesson to it. Not every scary story has to be shared.

I know. I’ll wait and see what the “lesson” is. I hope that it is as lease as useful a lesson as the ones learned in the Triangle Factory Fire.


Cyndia Rios-Myers


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