boyJust a couple of weeks ago the literary world (and just about anyone who cares about such things) marked what would have been the 100th birthday of the great Roald Dahl. Mr. Dahl, best known for his classic novels like James and the Giant Peach, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, possessed one of the greatest story-telling minds of the last century.

I have been a fan of Mr. Dahl as long as I can remember and thought I had consumed just about everything he had ever written. However, recently I was delighted to see that there was an untapped font of his writing in the form of letters he wrote to his mother from childhood and beyond. Now, for the first time to mark the centennial of his birth, these letters have been put in the wonderful new book, Love from Boy – Roald Dahl’s Letters to His Mother edited by Donald Sturrock.

About Love from Boy – Roald Dahl’s Letters to His Mother by Donald Sturrock: “From the author of The BFG, Matilda, James and the Giant Peach, and many more beloved classics—a whimsical, witty, and revealing collection of the legendary children’s author and writer Roald Dahl’s letters written to his mother, from early childhood through Dahl’s travels to Africa, his career in the Royal Air Force, his work in post-war Washington, D.C., and Hollywood, and the books that made him a literary star. Roald Dahl penned his first letter to his mother, Sofie Magdalene, when he was just nine years old. The origins of a brilliantly funny, subversive, creative mind were evident in boarding school, and as he entered adulthood, his penchant for storytelling emerged in his missives home from Africa, where he was stationed by Shell Oil, and then the desert camps of the Royal Air Force. His skills were sharpened after a plane crash in Egypt landed him in Washington, D.C., where his cheery letters home were cover for his work in the British Secret Service, along with gossipy updates on his spontaneous rise in Hollywood and his budding New York literary career.”

The letters Mr. Dahl wrote home display his talents in the most intimate way. Unlike the books that have become the favorites of millions, these letters were written for an audience of one, his mother. Yet you can’t help to think that in his signature devilish way he always knew fans like me would one day devour them too.

About Love from Boy – Roald Dahl’s Letters to His Mother by Donald Sturrock is available from Amazon and other fine book retailers.