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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars These are some of the best short stories EVER!!!
This is a terrific book of some of Roald Dahl's most deliciously twisted stories. Always suprising, clever, ingenious and, of course, unexpected!!! Deceptively simple writing with attention to odd and ordinary detail reveals wonderfully wicked stories. I cackled through the whole thing. Some are also quite thought-provoking, like "Genisis and Catastrophe."...
Published on Oct. 2 1999

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad for my 1st Roald Dahl book
I am writing my review primarily for 1st time readers of Roald Dahl's pieces.
I would consider a plus sign the tales' briefness & conciseness. Except for a few stories, they were simply a few pages off. I also consider the uniqueness/strangeness of both the plot & setting quite interesting & noteworthy. I somewhow relate this book to one of Edgar Allan...
Published on Nov. 25 2001 by juj


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars These are some of the best short stories EVER!!!, Oct. 2 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
This is a terrific book of some of Roald Dahl's most deliciously twisted stories. Always suprising, clever, ingenious and, of course, unexpected!!! Deceptively simple writing with attention to odd and ordinary detail reveals wonderfully wicked stories. I cackled through the whole thing. Some are also quite thought-provoking, like "Genisis and Catastrophe." Favorite stories include "The Sound Machine" "Skin" "William and Mary" and "Georgy Porgy". HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, unless you like your stories cute and wholesome, in which case you'll probably be offended by this book. Thanks for listining!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars First Great Book I Ever Read!, March 27 2000
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
I used to think books were boring. I would always avoid the library. But when I got this book, I started reading the first page. And then I couldn't put the book down! I would read this book in class, at reading time every day, until the ending. This is my favorite book. It always will be. Thanks to Roald Dahl, I'm starting to read lots of books now!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Vintage Roald Dahl--wonderful, wonderful!, March 17 2002
By 
Catherine S. Vodrey (East Liverpool, Ohio United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
Roald Dahl is at the peak of his powers in this collection. For anyone who knows him only as the author of the Willy Wonka books--or who thinks of him purely as a children's book author--this is the book to change your mind and make you think admiringly about Dahl's considerable powers as an adult writer.
The book is comprised of gem after gem. Two of Dahl's most famous stories are here. One is "Lamb to the Slaughter," about the wife of a police detective who kills her husband in a most unconventional way and then disposes of the murder weapon in a manner that would make any criminal proud. The other, "Nunc Dimittis," describes the lengths to which a society smoothie goes for revenge.
Dahl's descriptive powers are basic, but his imagination is limitless. He manages to calmly, smoothly pull you into his stories and make the most outrageous things seem perfectly in keeping and perfectly normal--while still just a bit askew.
The stories are all vintage Dahl. Each has elements of the macabre and the grotesque, couched in the comfortable trappings of middle-class life: marriage, tidy houses, bills, resentment, secrets, tidy houses, and so on. Dahl pulls off the neat trick of making the macabre laughable, though--he's not trying to scare the reader as much as make us shout with laughter and recognition and then settle back to enjoy a shiver of anticipation. In "William and Mary," the terminally ill narrator is propositioned by a neurosurgeon friend to give his brain up for experimentation after death. Despite the gruesome details, the story is hilarious:
" . . . So when I get you on the table I will take a saw, a small oscillating saw, and with this I shall proceed to remove the whole vault of your skull. You'd still be unconscious at that point so I wouldn't have to bother with anaesthetic."
"Like hell you wouldn't," I said.
"You'd be out cold, I promise you that, William. Don't forget you DIED just a few minutes before."
"Nobody's sawing off the top of my skull without an anaesthetic," I said.
Dahl doesn't get any better than this!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad for my 1st Roald Dahl book, Nov. 25 2001
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
I am writing my review primarily for 1st time readers of Roald Dahl's pieces.
I would consider a plus sign the tales' briefness & conciseness. Except for a few stories, they were simply a few pages off. I also consider the uniqueness/strangeness of both the plot & setting quite interesting & noteworthy. I somewhow relate this book to one of Edgar Allan Poe's short story collections, although Roald Dahl's book has a different style & a touch of (black) humor.
There were approx. 4 stories which really caught my attention & they were that of the meek (as a lamb) wife pulling off a successful crime, a surviving brain, a royal-jelly product baby & the reincarnated Lintz & Edward the Conqueror.
However, there were several stories about gambling which I particularly were not fond off. I couldn't see the humor in it --- instead, I felt something of a "GOOD FOR YOU" attitude.
I guess it all boils down to taste & preference. I wouldn't mind trying another of his pieces though. I am optimistic that I will find another book by this author which I will truly like.
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5.0 out of 5 stars For Short Story Lovers, March 4 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
I was enchanted with Roald Dahl's writing as a child ever since I read CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY and JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH. I was pleasantly surprised to stumble across this book while browsing through the shelves of my university's library. After reading TASTE and then LAMB TO THE SLAUGHTER, I found it difficult to put the book down. I find Dahl's style of writing and his keen attention to detail an absolute delight. Every story is a treat and I relish the moments that I have a bit of time to read a story or two. As a busy student, I don't have much time for recreational reading, and that's why short stories are a favorite. I enjoyed the book so much that I decided to purchase a personal copy from Amazon because this is a book I would like to read more than once. I had just been reading some of Shirley Jackson's short stories and was delighted to find another author who is consumately skilled in the genre. For those of you who like unusual stories with a twist, this book is for you.
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3.0 out of 5 stars I have missed something!, May 11 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
I found the stories in "Three Tales of the Unexpected" in a way interesting. I saw what the intention of Roald Dahl was, which means I found the morbid humour in the stories. Nevertheless I missed something in the stories. I cannot really say what exactly it was, I think it was not tension which the stories lacked, but I found no full sense in the stories. I must say that I liked "William and Mary" very much, and that its sense was quite clear to me. The idea of Mary having the power over her husband, being in fact only a piece of meat respectively brain. I didn't dislike the stories, but as I said I am not sooooo delighted by them. Anyway, I think i should find out something more about the circumstances that Roald Dahl lived in, and what made him write the stories the way he did. Moreover I think I should read one of his longer books like "The Gremlins"...
I rather play Ninetendo. I didn't like three tales of the unexpected, not one of the stories. Well, the second was the best even though it wasn't very thrilling. Everybody knows and has, as a child, done games like this one. The others were very absurd and senseless and that's why I didn't like them at all. I can't explain exacly why but I don't like Dahl's writing style. Reading this book is an absolutely waste of time so you'd rather read a book of John Irving ("The Water-Method Man" is absolutely genial) or play with your nintendo.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Unexpected and stupid, May 11 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
Review to Roald Dahl's three tales of the unexpected!
The unexpected has been well chosen from Dahl but that doesn't mean that this must be used in a negative sense. Like he does! All of the three stories have a foolish and pessimistic end, which you would never expect. The first story tells about a couple, where the husband died. He wanted to live on and so he followed the instructions of the doctor and allowed, that the surgeon takes out his brain of his head as soon as he died. The joke about this story is, that his wife who was always against this idea and she wanted at the end even take the brain home. And Dahl uses so many medical expressions, that you nearly fall asleep by reading it. The second story we don't even remember, what it was about! The third story is even more macabre than the first one and we would never recommend it to people who are still a little bit normal!
Olivia & Fabienne
If you want to tell us your opinion write to: bianco@mails.ch
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5.0 out of 5 stars Short storys with endings you could never guess, great book., Oct. 14 1996
By A Customer
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
I bet right now your thinking, I don't want to read a bunch of
short tales from this childrens author. However, this is a very adult
targeted collection of Dahls short storys, and you'll soon learn why they
are called "Tales of the unexpected", not because of any science fiction
theme, but the people next door living out small events with endings you
could never guess.
An example? Well, remember the Alfred Hitchcock show? One of the
twisted tales in here was made into an episode. A hint of mystery and even a
hint of humor mixed in with Dahls' perfect writing and qualitys make each story
stick, you won't forget a single one, I know I didn't.
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4.0 out of 5 stars For Dahl -- this set is of mixed quality, July 27 1998
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
This series of stories reads more like a series of writing-projects. Some are well done -- with original ideas, subtle weavings throughout that lead to an impressive and twisted end. Others are poorly done -- with unoriginal ideas, contrived plots, and obvious (or stupid) "endings-with-a-twist."
Worth buying and reading for all Dahl fans (and most other folks) particularly if you're interested in seeing what happens when Dahl is not at his best.
Some of these were adapted for a TV series. I believe that the "Man from the South" TV episode was mentioned in Quentin Tarantino's skit in the movie "Four Rooms"
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3.0 out of 5 stars Well-done!, May 11 2000
This review is from: Tales of the Unexpected (Paperback)
We just read an interesting book about Death -"Three Tales of the Unexpected" written by Roald Dahl. All the three tales were funny to read but they weren't really deep-going -just entertainment. But they were refreshing to read! It was nice that one time death wasn't a serious business but it was made to be humorous with the irony of destiny. For some people the stories might seem a bit brutal but that's the thing that makes the book different of other books. This book and these stories were written with a lot of imagination, what makes people love those stories all over the world.
Two students from Aarau, Switzerland
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Tales of the Unexpected
Tales of the Unexpected by Roald Dahl (Paperback - July 14 1990)
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