Roald Dahl

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Dahl, Roald

(rō`äl däl), 1916–90, British writer known for inventive, often macabre children's books and horror-tinged adult fiction. Dahl spurned a university education in favor of world travel, journeying to Newfoundland and Dar es Salaam, where he worked (1937–39) for an oil company. He was a Royal Air Force (RAF) fighter pilot during World War II, serving in North Africa, Greece, and Syria. Severely injured, he survived a crash in Libya, and was posted (1942–43) to Washington, D.C., as assistant air attaché (and, it was later disclosed, as a British spy). Dahl's first fiction, stories drawn from his RAF experiences, was published in a popular American magazine, and the first of his 19 children's books, The Gremlins, appeared in 1943. During the later 1940s and 50s, while working as a television writer, Dahl wrote compelling short stories filled with strange characters and eerie twists that were published in such collections as Someone like You (1953, rev. ed. 1961) and Kiss Kiss (1959); his collected stories were published in 2006. He returned to young people's tales with James and the Giant Peach (1961, film 1996). Extremely successful, it was followed by such popular books as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (1964, filmed as Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, 1971, and as originally titled, 2005), Fantastic Mr. Fox (1970, film 2009), The Witches (1983, film 1990), and Matilda (1988, film 1996). He also wrote three novels and several screenplays. Dahl was married (1953–83) to the actress Patricia Neal.


See his autobiographies, Boy (1984) and Going Solo (1986); biographies by J. Treglown (1994) and D. Sturrock (2010); J. Conant, The Irregulars, Roald Dahl and the British Spy Ring in Wartime Washington (2008); studies by M. I. West (1992) and A. Warren (1988, rev. ed. 1994).

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References in periodicals archive ?
This partnership with ( Netflix marks a significant move toward making that possible and is an incredibly exciting new chapter for the Roald Dahl Story Company," Dahl's widow, Felicity Dahl, said.
NYT Syndicate Roald Dahl's widow, Felicity Dahl, told the BBC that the children's author had written an early draft of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in which Charlie Bucket was black.
After being welcomed at the Norwegian Church Arts Centre - where Roald Dahl was christened - the Duchess met Felicity Dahl, the writer's widow, before watching performances and talking to pupils from the area.
Felicity Dahl, 77, was moved to tears when she visited the children's hospital seeking to establish the centre.
Mr Kelly was joined at the launch in the Norwegian Church by Felicity Dahl, Roald Dahl's widow.
SITTING PRETTY: Roald Dahl's widow Felicity Dahl outside the writer's hut
Staying at Gipsy House as Felicity Dahl's guest was also an inspiration for Anderson who recalls: "We started incorporating elements of Dahl's life and house into the story."
MUCH-LOVED: Roald Dahl NEW GENERATION: Pupils from St Charles RC school in Gosforth with Felicity Dahl ROALD FANS: From left, Kasie Dalby, Dylan Whittle and Mam-Biram Jobe with Felicity Dahl BOOK WORM: Didi Ndlouv with books by Roald Dahl at the Central Library in Newcastle
FELICITY DAHL, Roald Dahl's second wife, set up the foundation following his death in 1990 from a rare blood disorder.
It even has the blessing of Felicity Dahl, his widow."
Executive producers, Patrick McCormick, Felicity Dahl, Michael Siegel, Graham Burke, Brace Berrnan.
Felicity Dahl, former wife of Roald, reading from some of his books to (from left) Alex Franks, aged five and brothers Nathan, aged seven and Lewis, aged 12, during the open day at Coughton Court