An autobiography is a book a person writes about his own life and it is usually full of all sorts of boring details.
This is not an autobiography. I would never write a history of myself. On the other hand, throughout my young days at school and just afterwards a number of things happened to me that I have never forgotten . . . I didn’t have to search for any of them. All I had to do was skim them off the top of my consciousness and write them down.
Some are funny. Some are painful. Some are unpleasant. I suppose that is why I have always remembered them so vividly. All are true.
So wrote Roald Dahl in the Preface to Boy, his childhood memoir. His accounts of his own life, in both Boy and its sequel Going Solo, are certainly funny, painful, unpleasant and vivid. On reading them, it’s easy to see where the ogres who people Dahl’s fiction come from.
We’re delighted to revisit these memoirs on the Slightly Foxed bookshelf – prompted by the publication of Matthew Dennison’s new biography of Roald Dahl, Teller of the Unexpected – and immerse ourselves in adventure and eccentricity, the grotesque and the true. Please join us as we take a closer look at the life of a storyteller.
With best wishes, as ever, from the SF office staff
Anna, Hattie, Jess & Jemima