Matilda-9780141346342Title:  Matilda

Author: Roald Dahl

Publisher: Puffin books                   

Number of pages: 240        

Type of Book: Fiction

Age: 8+

Available here: http://product.chelisbookazine.com/product/matilda/ or Plot 12 Johnson Street, Off Bode Thomas Road, Surulere, Lagos, Nigeria and http://www.konga.com/matilda-1991425

Price: N1580 and N840

MY SUMMARY (without the ending):

This book is about a 5-year-old but do not be deceived, your 8-year-old may not be able to read it without a dictionary and/or some adult supervision.

Matilda is an absolutely delightful story about a tiny little genius called Matilda. Matilda is a well-behaved, mild-mannered child born to the nastiest set of parents in the world and schooling in a primary school with a most monstrous headmistress. Matilda’s parents are more interested in their work (Matilda’s Father), games (Matilda’s mother) and their son than their little girl. Miss Trunchbull her headmistress, hates little children and is fond of picking them up and throwing them out of windows or locking them in dark cupboards. In the midst of the madness and cruelty that she lives in, Matilda makes new friends and discovers that she has magical powers, which she uses to play (sometimes outrageous) practical jokes on her ‘enemies’: her parents and Miss Trunchbull.


UP: Humour! The book made me laugh and laugh and laugh. I loved the description of the characters especially Miss Trunchbull and Matilda’s parents. I loved the practical jokes Matilda played on her parents and Trunchbull.

I also loved the fact that this book contains references to so many other good books as well as a mini reading list. I think this is Dahl’s way of trying to get children to read more books. I enjoyed this book as a child and I appreciated it even more as an adult.

DOWN: None


5 stars


  1. Hortensia got thrown into ‘The Chokey’ because she put this in Miss Trunchbull’s knickers? Itching powder
  2. What is ‘The Chokey’? A tall and narrow dark cupboard where Miss Trunchbull locked the children up to punish them.
  3. “Looking at her, you got the feeling that this was someone who could bend iron bars and tear telephone directories in half.’ Who was Matilda describing? Miss Trunchbull.
  4. Matilda loved doing this more than anything else? Reading Books
  5. Matilda’s magical powers shot from here? Her eyes
  6. Matilda played tricks on these people because she disliked them as much as she did Miss Trunchbull? Her parents


Matilda knew no parent would ever believe this story: That Miss Trunchbull picked Amada Thripp up by the hair and threw her across the playground.

Read an excerpt here: http://www.npr.org/books/titles/205190773/matilda#excerpt

Visit Matilda here: http://www.roalddahl.com/roald-dahl/stories/1980s/matilda


Story/Poem OR DRAW)

  1. What do you think would have happened if Matilda hadn’t lost her magical powers? Write a different ending for the book. 150 words OR write a review of the book. 100 words.


  1. Draw a picture
    of Miss Trunchbull based on her description in the book


  1. Write a limerick about the importance of reading books

Send your answers to ugochinyelu.anidi@gmail.com

Entry requirements: Entrants must be within the 8-12 age range. The best entry will be announced on this page and will win a copy of this book.

Answers must be submitted before 12:00am on Monday, October 18th.

Next Book of the Week



Jelly Baby


Title:  Jelly Baby

Author: Phillip Begho

Publisher: Monarch Books                          

Number of pages: 112        

Type of Book: Fiction

Age: 8+

Available here: https://www.jumia.com.ng/philip-begho-jelly-baby-110627.html or borrow at the ZODML library, Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos.

Price: N200


Imagine a special war camp, crawling with soldiers but made especially for teenage boys on a top-secret assignment. There is an air of secrecy, the boys have no idea why they are there and one of fear, as the boys await the arrival of their much-feared would-be teacher.

This is where Jelly Baby is set. A group of 12 boys between the age of 8 and 10 is taken from different war camps for boys all over Sierra Leone and sent to a special war camp, Camp Bori-Bori. The boys soon found out that their top-secret assignment involved special sessions with the evil mind twister, Psycho Doctor who wanted to turn them into mini-killing machines. Immediately but separately, they make up their minds to escape.

But did they come up with a suitable plan and find out the spies among them before Psycho Doctor arrived at the camp? Did they ever get the chance to escape? Find out when you read the book.


UP: I had no expectations when I opened this book, In fact, part of me was worried it wouldn’t be a good book. Maybe this was because the author had churned out about one hundred books for children and I really wondered how good they could be. It was a fantastic read and I can attest to this because I had a terrible toothache and I still could not put the book down. I wrote this review in near darkness, my right eye half-closed as a result of the pain in my right cheek.

Begho took a tough subject about children and discussed it in an easy to understand manner without trivializing it. The characters (Jelly Baby, Neva SayDai, Nine Lives, NoTongue, Nott 4-Deyung, Warr IsBad, etc.) make the book come alive for the reader and the twists and turns keep you turning the pages till the end. I will recommend this book to all children and to the parents of children who would like their kids to learn a little bit of what the world is like for other African children.

DOWN: None!! Maybe it was too short.


4.5 stars


  1. Everyone in the camp was scared of him. Psycho Doctor.
  2. What was Bull Boy’s nickname for Jelly Baby? Sick Alimal (from animal)
  3. How did Jelly Baby get his name?
  4. Who were the Camp Bullies? Bull Boy and Trigger Kid
  5. Which boy blew his nose all the time? Zimboiboy
  6. Who were Jelly Baby’s pals? Neva SayDai and Live 4-Ever.


Write a 500-word essay on the following question:

What do you know about African Child Soldiers?

Send your answers to ugochinyelu.anidi@gmail.com

Entry requirements: Entrants must be within the 9-12 age range. The best entry will be announced on this page and will win a copy of this book.

Answers must be submitted before 12:00am on Tuesday 30th.

Next Book of the Week:

MATILDA by Roald Dahl


The Missing Clock

510XyP6iWmL._SX324_BO1,204,203,200_Title:  The Missing Clock

Author: Mai Nasara 

Publisher: Visa Books                                 

Number of pages: 96            

Type of Book: Fiction

Age: 10+

Available here: http://www.amazon.com/The-Missing-Clock-Mai-Nasara/dp/9789088868 or contact the author on twitter

Price: $9.99 or N1.300


Banji Tobe learns that planting leads to multiplication and he has something he loves that he would love to share. So Banji decides to plant this item in a bid to multiply it. This singular act sets off a series of events that start off badly but end very well for the Tobes. Join Banji and his family on their journey as they search for the missing clock and discover the joys of planting seeds and other objects.


UP: It teaches quite a few things about farming in general and planting Ugu seeds in particular. It was a bit didactic but then it’s a book that’s meant to teach as well as entertain and it does both quite well.

DOWN: Having read the blurb on several sites on the Internet, I expected a rather comic, adventurous tale about a mischievous 9-year-old-boy told in the first person. I was therefore a bit disappointed that it was neither written in the first person nor written in a child’s voice. In so many ways, adult assistance would be required for some readers to fully grasp the contents of the book.


3.5 stars


  1. What misfortune befell the Tobe family? Lanre Tobe, Banji’s father and head of the Tobe family lost his job.
  2. What seeds did Rashida plant in the Tobe garden? Ugu seeds
  3. “It would help if everyone tried to grow things other than flowers in their garden”. Who made this statement: Meyiwa Ashiru
  4. What was the source of the Tobe fortune? Ugu
  5. What did Banji plant instead of seeds? The bunny clock
  6. These 2 loved mangoes. One kept climbing trees to pluck them and the other kept taking them from him. Alphonso and his madam, Mrs. Ekwensi.

CHALLENGE: The Missing Clock

“It would help if everyone tried to grow things other than flowers in their garden.”

Can you answer the question below?

Describe the process for planting and harvesting Ugu.

Send your answers to ugochinyelu.anidi@gmail.com

Entry requirements: Entrants must be within the 9-12 age range. The first correct entry will be announced on this page and will win a copy of this book.

Answers must be submitted before 12:00am on Tuesday, October 27th.

Next Book of the Week:

JELLY BABY by Phillip Begho