Review: Stig of the Dump – Clive King

Read: 10
To Go: 90

Book List
1. Happy Ever After – Nora Roberts
2. The Bone Cage – Angie Abdou
3. Unless – Carol Shields
4. No Rules…Just Write – C. Noelle Susice
5. All My Friends Are Dead – Avery Monsen and Jory John
6. The Best Laid Plans – Terry Fallis
7. The Case for Falling in Love – Mari Ruti, PhD
8. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
9. Thoughts and Sentiments on the Evils of Slavery – Quobna Ottobah Cugoano
10. Stig of the Dump – Clive King

I have finished one tenth of my challenge! Not bad for not even two months in. Regardless, my tenth book was Stig of the Dump, a children’s book published in the ’60s that was apparently really, really popular (and I can see why). It’s about Barney, an adventurous eight-year-old who, due to sheer boredom, ventures into the chalk pit beside his house one day. There he meets Stig, an industrious caveman who can’t communicate much past grunting and grinning. Nevertheless, a friendship is forged.

At 244 pages full of size-16 font, I knew the book would be a quick read based on those factors and its audience, alone. But when I actually sat down to read it, I found that the fact that I loved it made it an even faster read.  Though the story was obviously meant for a set of younger readers, it was a clever and adventurous and, at the risk of sounding cliche, I was always excited to start a new chapter and find out what hijinks Barney and Stig got up to next.

The reader was supposed to like and relate to Barney more, but I found myself drawn to Stig, the big-hearted, intelligent caveman who, more often than not, would do anything to help out or protect his young friend – from intimidating a set of bullies to chasing off a leopard. I liked Barney, too, but I mainly looked forward to hearing from his caveman friend.

I’d recommend Stig of the Dump to anyone, really – no ages barred. You can appreciate it whether you’re eight or 18 or 80, because it is really just awesome.

Next book: The Conversations: Walter Murch and the Art of Editing Film – Michael Ondaatje

– Kelsey

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