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Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator


Author
Roald Dahl
Type
Fiction
Status
In Print
Publisher
Alfred A. Knopf (1972)

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This entry created 31 May 2023. Last revised on 31 May 2023.

505 hits since 31 May 2023
©1994-2024 Bill Armintrout
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Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator

The Further Adventures of Charlie Bucket and Willy Wonka, Chocolate-Maker Extraordinaire

Rating: gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star no star no star no star (7.00)

167 pages. This 1998 edition includes black-and-white sketches by Quentin Blake, and an interview with the author.

This book is the sequel to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The title shows the author's insistence that Charlie is the star of the stories, rather than the much more popular Mr. Wonka. And the subtitle emphasizes Wonka as a chocolate-maker, not a candyman.

This novel picks up exactly where the last novel left off. Young Charlie, his parents, and all four grandparents (including their bed) have loaded into the Great Glass Elevator for the trip back to Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. However, the grandparents panic and distract Mr. Wonka, causing the Elevator to soar into orbit.

In an amazing coincidence, an American shuttle is simultaneously entering orbit to deliver staff for the brand-new orbiting Space Hotel. The American president – whose senior adviser is his former nanny – is quite upset to see a strange craft docking with the hotel!

And so begins a silly adventure in space and back again (and into the underworld), battles with Vernicious Knids, and several doses of Wonka-Vite.

It seems jarring for the sequel to veer into silly science-fiction, which is perhaps why the sequel is not as well-regarded as the original (and has not been made into a movie). The first part of the novel revels in corny jokes and comedy that I found tedious, but kids would probably love. For an adult reader, it's the second half of the novel which becomes more imaginative and entertaining. The book lacks the overarching theme of the original novel, and is mostly just madcap fun.

Can you wargame it? Believe it or not, there are several battles in this novel. None of them are particularly wargameable. However, Vernicious Knids would be terribly easy to sculpt.

This is a fun read even for adults, and it must be fun to read to children. Recommended.

Reviewed by Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian.