- 5:24 pm - February 27, 2012
- 9 notes
The freckle-faced orphan Anne of Green Gables was inspired by a chorus girl and the BFG was based on a “huge, sweet-natured Norfolk builder”, according to a new book which reveals the real people behind literary creations.
Almost 400 examples of the real-life inspirations for fictional characters, from Heathcliff to the Godfather, are presented in author Eamon Evans’s The Godfather Was a Girl, out later this week….
LM Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables might “seem like a wholesome dollop of sweet, syrupy goodness”, says Evans, but her looks were actually modelled on red-headed chorus girl Evelyn Nesbit, a morphine addict who watched her boyfriend kill her ex-lover and later attempted suicide. Roald Dahl’s Big Friendly Giant, meanwhile, was based on Norfolk builder Wally Saunders, a man with a “long, pale, wrinkly face”, writes Evans. Saunders, a second world war veteran who could, like the giant, flap his ears, built Dahl’s writing hut and was “like a second father to his kids”.
—Alison Flood, “Real-life BFG and Godfather revealed in new book”
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