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4.7 out of 5 stars1,816
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 17 July 2015
I read this as a bedtime story over a few nights with my child, aged 5. Ben thinks his granny is a boring old lady, who only likes playing scrabble and eating cabbage but he's about to find out that he has under appreciated Granny. Could she possibly be a gangster? Or even a gangsta?!

This was a read which my child enjoyed. There were a few gross references, to breaking wind mostly, which are always a winner with children. It's a good book to read aloud, but be prepared to do some voices, because it works much better if you're willing to put some effort into it!

I thought that the writing was along the lines of Roald Dahl, however unlike Dahl's writing there was a moral to this story, which surprised me a little bearing in mind David Walliams' comedy! I would give a word of warning that there is quite a sad event in this book, which may be a little upsetting for more sensitive children.

One aspect of the book I enjoyed was the references to the Tower of London and the Crown Jewels which really interested my child (educational opportunity!). We'd certainly try another David Walliams book.
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on 10 April 2013
This is without doubt one of the best books my son has read. From the very first chapter he was hooked and has giggled his way through.
I've managed to read snippets of the book so far, but plan to read it properly once he's finished.
Although we've only had the book a couple of days, he's not been able to put it down so far. From what I've read and the huge amount retold to me by my son, the story is amusing and adventurous but tackles lots of issues and morals. Respect, honesty, trust and life to name a few.
Walliams seems to write in a way that children can relate to without being patronising or scrimping on detail and humour. My son is 7 and understands all the language and isn't struggling with the vocabulary, and I don't think that he realised that reading could provide him with so much entertainment until he received this book!
We shall definitley be purchasing more of Walliams books- I believe that 'Ratburger' is the next choice! If your children enjoy series such as 'Mr Gum' and Roald Dahl's works then these will almost certainly be a hit.
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on 6 November 2011
this was a brilliant book the had my sides splitting and then my tears rolling (both of these not litretly) david waliams books are the only books that actually make me laugh out loud.
verdict: wonderfull book.
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on 12 July 2012
My six-year-old daughter thoroughly enjoyed having this read aloud to her. She wasn't bothered by the plot flaw that has irritated me - Granny claims she was only pretending to be a jewel thief. Why then does Ben find her dressed in black about to smash the window of a jewellery shop? I'd be happy to interpret this as 'the real truth' that Granny is trying to conceal from Ben if this was in any way hinted at in the text, but it isn't. Did this bother anyone else?
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on 25 June 2012
Ben hates staying at his Granny's house every Friday because all she wants to do is to play Scrabble and eat cabbage! He wants to be a plumber when he is older but his parents would like him to be a dancer for they love 'Strictly Stars Dancing', they love it so much, Ben thinks that they love the show more than him! He finds his Granny extremely boring but Granny tells him something Ben never knew. Something sad does happen at the end but it doesn't ruin the story.

A lot of things happen in this book, for example, meeting the Queen! I thoroughly enjoyed the book as, just like Mr. Stink, it makes you feel like you are there, part of the whole thing. I've only read one other book by David Walliams and that is Mr. Stink which I enjoyed just as much as this book. I'm so happy that my family bought this for my birthday because I absolutely loved it! I've read several times now and it doesn't ever get boring.

I would recommend this for people who like humorous books. If you do buy the book, I'm sure you will enjoy it.
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on 17 October 2014
This book is a funny, humorous book written by David Walliams. When Ben finds some jewels in the biscuit tin at his boring old granny’s house he doesn’t know where she’s got them from. Could she be a millionaire? One night Ben was spying on his granny. He followed her until she came to a halt at at shop that had diamond rings. She threw her tin of cabbage soup, smash went the window. ‘’ Granny’’ shouted the boy. Granny dropped the rings. ‘’Ben’’ granny replied. When granny took Ben back to her house she told Ben to fetch the biscuit tin from the cupboard, Ben tried to think but he did not know anything about what was in the biscuit tin. My favourite part is when they go on a heist to go and steal the crown jewels. If I could recommend this book I would recommend it to my friends and others.

book review by Kira from Mrs Murden's class
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on 22 October 2013
A little slow to get into, but once it got going this was a very funny yarn (that the kids loved) about a little boy learning to appreciate and value his elders.

As it romped rapidly towards the finish we found we couldn't put the book down, it's a lovely exploration of how Ben's relationship with his Granny grows set against the biggest jewel heist in history. One unexpected guest had us laughing very loudly.

Just a slight warning, although to the adult reader it's sign-posted from fairly early on - the book does (very sensitively and poignantly) handle the difficult topic of death and grief. All credit to David Walliams for tackling it so positively in this book, since it can allow a springboard for family discussions on the subject. However some little ones may get very upset - since to them the characters seem so real.

Beautifully written. Can't wait to read the next book.
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on 10 March 2013
I really enjoyed the story, it made me laugh alot. The main character is the granny and her gandson Ben. Ben hates going to his grannys house every Friday night she smells of cabbage and does a lot of cabbage farts. Ben thinks his granny is really boring until he finds out that she is an international jewel thief. Ben starts to see another side to his granny, together they both start to plot the most daring robbery of all time, to steal the Crown Jewels! Granny is my favourite character because she not like most grannies. My favourite part of the book is when they are caught by the Queen in her night gown and furry Corgi slippers whilst wearing her crown. The Queen and granny start to talk to each other about the difficulties of being a grandmother and connecting with the younger generation. It is quite sad at the end but it is a great book i highly recommend it!!! I rated this book 4 1/2.
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on 18 December 2011
This book was one of the best books I have ever read. I recommend it for kids from 9-13 it made me laugh for hours at one single line it was written with great thought for a full experience for the reader. Anyone considering buying this is 100% correct it is a great piece of writing that is perfect for improving children's vocabulary. It is a fantastic book and Christmas is coming soon what could be a better gift to a young child than a story that will encourage them to read more and enjoy reading.
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on 3 November 2012
...and that's what counts I suppose. We listened to the CD on a car journey, and our 8 and 11 year daughters thought it was funny and entertaining. It's a bonus when adults can enjoy a book as well, but we didn't think it was very well written. I found parts of it almost depressing in fact; there's no explanation for why Ben's parents are so horrible to him, and why they apparently feel utter hatred for his grandmother (who is presumably the mother of one of them.) Yes, some parents are very bad, but that's not entertaining. I suspect this is just easy characterisation, in the same vein as the repetitive cabbage gag with the granny, and the stereotypical Indian shopkeeper. In David Walliams's reading, he puts on his usual funny voices (familiar from Little Britain) for all of the adult characters, yet for Ben he uses his own normal voice, which seemed odd to me; the voice of a middle class adult cutting in makes it seem as if Ben is somehow more sensible and knowing than the dreadful adult characters, yet this is a child who is meant to be obsessed by plumbing, and so is definitely meant to have some quirky personality of his own, yet that doesn't come across as part of him. He apparently finds his Granny deadly dull, although she is a fan of thriller novels in which he has no interest, while he loves Plumbers' Weekly... does that make sense? In fact I ended up feeling that the whole plumbing thing was only there to provide the boy's knowledge for the later escapade with his granny; as a result I felt that his character just didn't stack up.
The covers and the style of writing do seem to point to a wish to follow in the footsteps of Roald Dahl, but I don't think this is at that level at all. Never mind, the children did like it.
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