'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' book cover gets a controversial new makeover

By Rachel Karach,

Penguin has released a new cover for the 50th anniversary of Roald Dahl’s classic children’s novel, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. But rather than celebrating the impact the tale has made on the lives of children for half a century, the cover has done little more than evoke backlash from the public.

Image via Facebook from Penguin

According to TIME, fans have complained that the cover has little to do with the actual plot. On top of the irrelevance to the novel, people are criticizing Penguin for choosing an image that appears to over-sexualize a child.

The cover features a photo of a young girl in a blonde wig and a significant amount of makeup sitting on a woman’s lap. She looks doll-like in an almost eerie way and people are complaining that her heavily made-up face suggests foul play.

“I’m not sure why adults need a different cover anyway, but who was it who decided that ‘adult’ meant ‘inappropriately sexualized’?” tweeted one disgruntled fan.

Penguin has attempted to rebuff the recent controversy in a new statement on Facebook.

“This new image for CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY looks at the children at the centre of the story, and highlights the way Roald Dahl’s writing manages to embrace both the light and the dark aspects of life, ready for Charlie’s debut amongst the adult titles in the Penguin Modern Classics series.”

What do you think of the cover? Did Penguin make the wrong call by including an oddly suggestive image?

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