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La increíble historia de...el niño de los…
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La increíble historia de...el niño de los vestidos / The Boy in the… (edició 2015)

de David Walliams (Autor)

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6952926,520 (3.81)22
Dennis is a boy who lives in a boring house in a boring street in a boring town, and he doesn't have much to look forward to. But what he does have is dreams and once he starts to follow them, things will never be the same again. Suggested level: primary, intermediate.
Membre:Melo20
Títol:La increíble historia de...el niño de los vestidos / The Boy in the Dress (Spanish Edition)
Autors:David Walliams (Autor)
Informació:Montena (2015), 304 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
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La increïble història de... El noi del vestit de David Walliams

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» Mira també 22 mencions

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I like children's books, so not having read David Walliams was a large gap. I also like having opinions on internet controversies, so after Jack Munroe's rant about the racism and classism and body shaming, I had another reason to read these.

So what is my take-home? Well, a bit of this, a bit of that.

It's definitely _there_. There is a fat character at school who the kids call 'Big Mac and Chips', and the joke is that he is on a diet because he's eating a huge pile of junk food, but diet coke. There is a strongly-coded-as-pakistani shop keeper (called Raj, wife wears a sari, dark skinned in the illustrations) who is always trying to sell more things with ridiculous offers. It is 'not glamourous' that Dennis's dad drives a lorry of bog rolls to Doncaster.

It's doesn't feel like it's done cruelly though. Lazily, maybe. But when the fat boy asks the hero on a date, it is shown as a good thing that they call him by his real name and not his nickname and turn him down gently. Raj the shop owner is annoying when he tries to sell you too many things, but is basically a Good Egg, and indeed it is his sharp eye that saves the day at the end of the book (although he does it by outing another cross dresser, so they can blackmail him, which is... complicated, if you overthink it. Still, hypocrisy smells and should be punished). It feels like one of those baby-steps problems. If you just make the shop keeper white, you have a lack of diversity in your books, but people might not see it. If you make the shop keeper Pakistani, there is suddenly an entire minefield of racist tropes out there you will probably blunder into, but you probably were coming from a heart-in-the-right-place of wanting more diversity in the first place. I think on balance Jack Munroe has a really good point - this is the 21st century, can't we do better than this in children's books? But maybe we pass through this bit to get there.

Also, I end up feeling well inclined towards Walliams because this particular story is, for all its flaws, fundamentally sweet and kind and nice and close to my own heart. Dennis wants to wear dresses. He loves looking at fashion magazines, he loves dressing up, he loves make-up. He also loves playing football and is excellent at it. He's a kid - the book doesn't go anywhere near whether Dennis is gay, or trans, or just going to be a fabulous drag queen - he is just at the exploring stage where he's found something he is really enjoying doing and doesn't quite know why yet. (It is quite heavily suggested that Dennis wants to wear dresses because his mum left them, and he misses her and dresses remind him of her. I think I'd have preferred the book more without that, but it's not a deal breaker for me.)

I really hope this book dates, and in 30 years time no-one gets it any more, because people wearing the clothes they want to wear has just become normalised, but in this book wearing dresses gives Dennis problems. His Dad says 'no son, it's not right, it's just weird' and throws his stuff away. His headmaster expels him. Isn't it funny how stories written to break down 'this thing is bad' also act as portrayals of 'people will say this thing is bad'? They're good for the battle they're fighting at the time, I really hope they become amusing dinosaurs that make no sense to readers in the future.

But Dennis has Friends, who stand by him, and say he is their friend even if he likes wearing a dress. They even all wear dresses in protest at his expulsion. And eventually his Dad gets there, and there is a 'He's my son and I couldn't be prouder' moment. (All of this is helped a lot by the fact Dennis is Really Really good at football. If you're going to spend Weird Points, have an obvious talent that gives you lots of Cool Points is a depressing take-home message, but quite a true one.)

Don't go into this book expecting it to be completely trans positive. There is a scene at the end where the shop keeper is cross-dressing in his shop, and the boys are very 'err, obviously you'll never pass as a woman, you have a big Adam's apple and stubble and Huge Hands' which I can imagine is quite an upsetting read for some people.

So yes. Definitely problematic in places, but with a warm heart mostly in the right place. ( )
  atreic | Nov 10, 2021 |
I registered a book at BookCrossing.com!
http://www.BookCrossing.com/journal/13253398
  slojudy | Sep 8, 2020 |
A boy arriving at school in a dress and makeup? Not, okay.

Or so everyone thinks.

I love almost everything about this book, from the look into a sad and closed down family to a boy's desire for more splendid things, and for room to be who he is and find support. There are marvellous Vogue scenes, mischievous moments (plenty), and a plot that twists awfully around the vulnerable protagonist.

There is only one moment of less generous humour in an expanse of compassion and glee.

A wonderful book. ( )
  thesmellofbooks | Sep 3, 2020 |
Charming and sweet and funny. The narrator's voice is wonderful and just a touch wry; I love the brief asides to the reader. The story is filled out with a fantastic portrait of family, some wonderful ideas about diversity and acceptance, and gentle, almost silly, humor. I'm not doing a very good job summing up why this appealed to me so strongly, but it's a quick read and it left me with warm fuzzies. Pick it up! It's totally worth your time.

Also, if you've read [b:The Dark Remains The Last Rune 3|587976|The Dark Remains (The Last Rune, #3)|Mark Anthony|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1176058515s/587976.jpg|574785], the sequined orange dress totally struck me as something that Marji would wear. I feel like Dennis and Marji would get along like gangbusters if they met in some weird fiction crossover world, yeah? ( )
1 vota bookbrig | Aug 5, 2020 |
For his first effort, this is a surprisingly good piece of junior fiction from David Walliams - who is, of course, best known for his acting and comedy work. While the outcome is a little too happily-ever-after to be believed, given the subject matter, that's fair enough when one takes into account the age group of the intended audience.

I think kids would love this book, and there's plenty of interest in there for adults as well.
  Tara_Calaby | Jun 22, 2020 |
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Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Walliams, Davidautor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Blake, QuentinIl·lustradorautor secundaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Blankevoort, JannekeTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Gibert, CatherineTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Haentjes-Holländer, DorotheeTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Jatta-Kapari, JaanaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Lagergren, BarbroTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Lucas, MattNarradorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Sole Muñoz, XeviTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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Dennis was different.
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Dennis is a boy who lives in a boring house in a boring street in a boring town, and he doesn't have much to look forward to. But what he does have is dreams and once he starts to follow them, things will never be the same again. Suggested level: primary, intermediate.

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