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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stranger Than Fiction.
These ten stories by the greatest of story tellers were all written in the 40's, and out of the experiences that the man himself had. This is definitely NOT Willy Wonka and the Chocolate factory, but rather tales of the unexpected with WW2 aircraft and pilots. Roald was a pilot himself, and here the voice of painful experience comes through.
The stories also contain...
Published on 29 Sept. 2001

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3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Some stories are good, others not so much. Bought it after enjoying Boy and Going Solo. Worth a read.
Published 7 months ago by Guntherus


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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stranger Than Fiction., 29 Sept. 2001
By A Customer
These ten stories by the greatest of story tellers were all written in the 40's, and out of the experiences that the man himself had. This is definitely NOT Willy Wonka and the Chocolate factory, but rather tales of the unexpected with WW2 aircraft and pilots. Roald was a pilot himself, and here the voice of painful experience comes through.
The stories also contain elements of truth and morality, from the experiences of pilots fighting in Greece (3 stories) to their exploits on the ground in Cairo to the feelings of a sweetheart waiting for her beloved in an RAF bomber to come home. In fact, all the stories are RAF based, and some deal with ideas of death, both the manner thereof and in perspectives on the after-life (very much in the vein of a separate heaven for fighter pilots as they travel through the vague mists of time tunnels, not really a Christian reference to meeting God or the morality of war). All very much of their time really, and not short of propaganda for boosting the morale of those at home (These stories appeared in American magazines in 1945 first of all).
Masterfully written of course, and more thought provoking than the usual Aerial warfare episodes of fireballs in the air and chalking up the kills.
A neglected work of Dahls I would say, yet in no way inferior.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best collection of short stories written on WW2, 6 Feb. 2003
Despite being a great Dahl fan I was reluctant to start reading this collection of short stories feeling that war literature is often over represented. From the first chapter I was gripped and believe this has to be one of the best works of fiction WW2 produced (Catch 22 by Joseph Heller being another gem). Dahl uses his gift of keeping the reader captivated and engrossed in his every word to produce a mixed bag of stories- some in a Tales Of The Unexpected vein, others very similar to his later reminisces of the war in Going Solo and still others having a gritty, humorous and undoubtedly wonderful flavour of their own.
This is perhaps Dahl's least known book and the only one I hadn't heard of before buying. It sometime feels, reading OTY, that Dahl has been the victim of his own success regarding his other novels and collections. Being known partly as a children's author and partly as a master of Hitchcock style suspense novel must have meant when these war-time tales came to light among alongside his other works they were considered just another string on Dahl's bow and not given the serious critical appreciation an unknown or "serious literary" author would have received.
Evocative, sad, funny and absorbing- Dahl has come up with another winner that's shines despite its wartime bleakness.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Dahl's particular brand of wonderful oddity, 28 Oct. 2009
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L. R. Richardson (Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is a collection of short stories influenced by Roald Dahl's experiences as a RAF pilot in WWII. While Roald Dahl is best remembered for his children's novels, such as Matilda or Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, I enjoy his works meant for adults even more. His other collection of short stories for adults, Kiss Kiss, is delightfully creepy. These stories were not quite as creepy, but they were still bizarre and twist at the end in the typical Rahl fashion.

Some of his stories in this collection were a bit of a let down, but most of them were wonderful reads. My favourite of the collection was the story "They Shall Not Grow Old," where a young pilot disappears for two days, but when he returns he insists that he has only been gone for an hour and five minutes. Everyone tries to get him to remember what happened, but he only remembers when he sees another pilot gunned down in a plume of smoke. He flew into a cloud and entered a different world where all of the pilots who had been killed in the war were flying for eternity, and he envied them their peace. The characters were well-drawn, the prose effortless, the details well-balanced, and it was one of my favourite short stories I've ever read.

All stories were well-written, some merely appealed to me more than others. It's a worthy collection to read and I urge those who have read and loved Roald Dahl's children's work to read his work for adults.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good Short Stories, 26 Feb. 2010
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Don't expect that this book will cast much light on Roald Dahl's flying career in the Middle East as I hoped that it would. It is, however, a great collection of absorbing short stories which make excellent bedtime reading. Dahl's more factual account of the RAF in the ill-fated campaign in Greece does provide some enlightenment of Dahl's wartime experiences.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great for boys, 29 Feb. 2012
Arrived as expected, boys have enjoyed this book my husband remembered from his childhood. good short stories easy to read and a sight into WW2
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, 3 Oct. 2013
I had just read going solo which I enjoyed, this was a little different and definitely a bit odd in places, a good read well written.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars, 5 Dec. 2014
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This review is from: Over to You: Ten Stories of Flyers and Flying (Penguin Modern Classics) (Kindle Edition)
Some stories are good, others not so much. Bought it after enjoying Boy and Going Solo. Worth a read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommend, 11 Feb. 2015
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Dahl was the most creative of writers , highly recommend
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Didn't get off the runway, 25 Mar. 2013
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George Orwell once said that in eleven out of twelve cases, the only truthful review that one can write is 'this book inspires in me no thoughts whatever.'

Over to You, Dahl's 1946 collection of 'ten stories of flyers and flying' left me feeling rather like that. It's not quite accurate to say that it inspired no thoughts in me, but the thoughts that it brought to mind were that:

(a) Dahl was trying to imitate Hemingway;

(b) the stories fail to engage the reader as his later tales do;

(c) the writing was almost entirely devoid of original or memorable phrases. Instead we get such tiresome cliches as 'every man, woman and child', 'as if by magic', 'blinding flash' and 'mass of flames'. At one point he writes:

'she did not dare to move or speak lest she distract him from his task.'

That sort of language must have been dated even in the forties. I also found his use of word repetition clumsy and irritating (here I felt he was trying to ape Lawrence.)

Judging from other reviews there are plenty of folk who enjoy Over to You. For me, it is the weakest of Dahl's story collections.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 23 Nov. 2014
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This review is from: Over to You: Ten Stories of Flyers and Flying (Penguin Modern Classics) (Kindle Edition)
As good as i remember it
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