Tales Of The Unexpected (Roald Dahl)

dahltalesunexpectedIn sixteen short stories the reader is both enthralled and appalled at the depths to which some of the characters sink to when placed in various predicaments. This book is an absolute pleasure to read due to the fabulous writing and narrative skills of the author. Bold, unapologetic, devious, dark, and simultaneously lighthearted.

You know there’s a twist coming, you think you’ve predicted what it’ll be, but you’re surprised every time – on a first reading. Roald Dahl managed to keep my level of anticipation and suspense at a nearly fevered pitch throughout the entire work, and there were many times I laughed out loud or gasped in shock. But that was over 30 years ago. These tales do seem stuck in their own time loop for nostalgia freaks like me.

The type of middle or upper class characters that he specializes in probably feel artificial to many ordinary folk but he did have a privileged education and it shows. I’ll rate each story as there’s no point giving away the plots although most readers of short stories know this collection very well. The stories that contain a gambling theme are my favourites.

“Taste” 5/5

“Lamb to the Slaughter” 4/5

“Man from the South” 5/5

“My Lady Love, My Dove” 3.5/5

“Dip in the Pool” 5/5

“Galloping Foxley” 3.5/5

“Skin” 2/5

“Neck” 4/5

“Nunc Dimittis” 4.5/5

“The Landlady” 3/5

“William and Mary” 1/5

“The Way Up to Heaven”  5/5

“Parson’s Pleasure” 3/5

“Mrs Bixby and the Colonel’s Coat”  5/5

“Royal Jelly” 1/5

“Edward the Conqueror” 3/5




  1. Thanks for the recommendation, I’m adding this to my Halloween reading list! 😈

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for commenting…when you get a copy I hope you love it!


  3. I know this is an oldish blog but you might want to take a look at the Sky Arts channel (If you can get it). They’re currently showing TOTU on there. Although it’s really old stories now, the twist in the tale is always so delightfully charming. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks for the info Steph. I’ll look into it. 🙂


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