Roald Dahl is widely known as one of the best author of children’s literature of the twentieth century, but readers don’t often stop and think about how truly bizarre his characters are. Many are macabre, darkly comic, or just downright creepy, which is something that draws many to his work. His strange characters stick with readers for years—ask most people which children’s books they remember the most, and it’s likely that Dahl’s work will come up.
Some are stranger than others. From the ambiguously murderous Willy Wonka to the the worm-eating Twits, Dahl’s characters run the spectrum of fascinatingly weird. But Dahl uses these odd creations to great effect, delighting readers everywhere, young and old, and keeping us interested by tapping into our dreams and nightmares at the same time, and forging both into adventure. In celebration of Dahl’s imagination, let’s take a look at 6 of his strangest characters.