Danny the Champion of the World
by Roald Dahl
Here is a wonderful adventure and an affectionate, father-son love story rolled into one. Danny is an adorable nine-year-old boy, raised alone by his doting father. They live in a gypsy caravan parked behind a filling station. Danny's father is an auto mechanic, but he's oh so much more. As Danny finally concludes, he is the greatest, most exciting father a boy ever had.
The two are devoted to each other. So it happens that one night, when Danny awakens in the small hours and can find no sign of his father, he grows worried. When his father returns from a nocturnal jaunt, he decides to reveal his deepest darkest secret. Danny's father, law-abiding mechanic by day, is a pheasant poacher by night! Soon father and son together are enjoying this exciting past-time, their enjoyment redoubled by their dislike for Mr. Victor Hazell, who has hundreds of fat pheasants in his woods, saving them up for the opening of pheasant-shooting season when Hazell has the lions of society over to his estate.
So partly to feed their family and friends with a rare treat of roast pheasant, and partly to get back at the nasty Mr. Hazell, Danny and his father hatch an ingenious plan-a daring plan-a plan that unravels in a hilarious and amazing way.
Fans of Dahl's books will recognize a beloved character in the stories Danny's father tells to his son.
As in The Fantastic Mr. Fox, readers may question the ethics of Dahl's characters. On the other hand, it could be that Dahl's purpose (in part) was to make you question the ethics, for example, of Mr. Hazell and his type, or of the vicious schoolteacher named Captain Lancaster. One thing you will not question is that this story will charm you, and you will love Danny and his father almost as much as they love each other.
Recommended Age: 8+
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