At the beginning of the book, Roald Dahl tells the reader that Matilda Wormwood is one of the few examples of a child that is disliked by her parents. What makes it tragic, however, is that Matilda is a daughter most mums and dads would love to have. By the age of four, she can read and write to a high level.
In comparison, Mr. and Mrs. Wormwood are hateful, ignorant people. Mr Wormwood sells secondhand, often shoddily repaired, cars, and Mrs Wormwood spends her time trying, in vain, trying to look younger than her many years. They just cannot understand why Matilda would prefer to involve herself in more intellectual pursuits.
After her parents try to ban her from reading, Matilda thinks up a series of ingenious ways to get her revenge. First, she lines her father's hat with super glue so it stays stuck to his head. Second, she borrows her friend's parrot and hides it in the house. When it starts to speak, she claims it's a ghost. Finally, she replaces her father's hair tonic with peroxide...
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