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Listening Corner

George's Marvellous Medicine, Roald Dahl. Collins, Pounds 4.99, Cassette, 66 mins, Age group: 4-11

George's grandmother is a terrible grouch. And she's always after George, to get her tea, to get her medicine, to do her bidding. One day George is so fed up that he decides to give her a dose of her own medicine. Like many another child on a boring day, he mixes up a potion. But this potion is something special. Not only does it have a far wider range of ingredients paint and liquid paraffin as well as flea powder and hairspray but it produces amazing effects. Grandma grows and grows and grows. Soon she is out of the roof. But does her temper improve? Not a bit of it.

Roald Dahl's rollicking prose carries along even adults who find his glee and grotesqueries a bit hard to stomach though not as hard as the marvellous medicine. Children revel in revenge; in this case, mean Grandma is clearly jealous of George and deserves her fate. This pacy dramatised production, featuring Patricia Hayes as Grandma, does the story proud and misses out on very little of the original text.

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