CHARLIE AND THE GREAT GLASS ELEVATOR by Quentin Blake

CHARLIE AND THE GREAT GLASS ELEVATOR

illustrated by , by

KIRKUS REVIEW

In a perfectly silly and pointlessly tastless sequel to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Mr. Willie Wonka's glass elevator goes into orbit carrying Charlie, his parents, his grandparents, and the bed that three of the grandparents haven't left for 20 years. They stop at a new U.S. Space Hotel causing panic back at the White House, where an illiterate President who tells knock-knock jokes thinks they are Martians and a broad-typed Chief of the Army wants to blow them up "crash bang wallop bang-bang-bang-bang-bang." But when a horde of greenish, shapeless creatures called "vermicious knids" starts emerging from the space hotel's elevators, the humans hop back to earth in their knid-proof glass one, towing a crew of terrified astronauts along. In the reaches of space fiction where anything goes, Mr. Dahl's inventions are old hat, and about all that ensues back at the factory is the grandparents' excessive rejuvenation (one of them is even "minused"), overcompensating aging, and Ultimate return to the status quo ante by swallowing alternate doses of Vita-Wonk and Wonka-Vite. They are finally lured from their beds by an invitation from the White House (a reward for rescuing the astronauts) and even Charlie himself exits dancing with glee, never questioning the privilege involved in visiting those previously caricatured idiots. With humor that depends on gratuitous references to the President's pottie or the results of a very strong laxative, with the Oompa-Loompas still fetching and carrying, this has all the faults that disturbed grown-ups and none of the inspired outrageousness that attracted children to its predecessor.
Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1972
ISBN: 0375815252
Page count: 176pp
Publisher: Knopf
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 1972




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