Book #63: Oliver Twist

I read Oliver Twist when I was a kid. It wasn’t the real version, it was one of those abridged, kid-ified versions with a picture on every other page. I remember I liked it a lot, because I was at that age where kids love orphans and things. At the time I was also devouring The Boxcar Children series. Every kid has that stage when they think orphans are cool and kinda sorta think maybe it’d be a bit fun to be an orphan, right?

No? It’s just me?


Well, anyway. I went into Oliver Twist knowing the story because I’d read a kids’ version, and also because my grandpa, who often plays piano for musicals, accompanied his town’s childrens’ theatre’s production of the musical Oliver!

I read this book with all the freakin’ songs from that show in my head.

Sitting there, reading along about how Oliver drew the lot and so he had to go ask for more food and then:
Oliver, Oliver! Never before has a boy wanted more! Oliver, Oliver! Ol-liv-er!

Oh, now Oliver’s working for the casket maker? My, how grim…
If you’re fond of overeating, that’s your funeral! [That’s your funeral!]
Starve yourself by undereating, that’s your funeral! [That’s your funeral!]

He’s met the Artful Dodger and he’s going to meet Fagin. Classic scene!
Oh dear…
Coooooooooooonsider yourself one of the family! We’ve taken to you SO STRONG!

And of course, running through the whollllle thing was Oom-pah-pah, oom-pah-pah, that’s how it goes! Oom-pah-pah, oom-pah-pah everyone knows! What is the cause of his shiny red noooooose??? Could it be oooooooooom pah pah?!

Should I mention that I saw this musical TEN YEARS AGO? And that I have never listened to the soundtrack since. Apparently those songs were locked, deep, deep, DEEP in my subconscious, just waiting for me to read Oliver Twist again so they could burst forth.

Makes me really glad I didn’t watch Les Mis before I read the book. As it was, I just occasionally had I Dreamed a Dream stuck in my head.

All that said, Oliver Twist was a fun re-read, although I’m not sure I got much more out of it than I did when I read it as a kid, though it did make me wonder how many other random songs and things are locked deep in my subconscious, just waiting for the right trigger to pop forward again.

Rating: ***
Up Next: The Master


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