Last Night in Twisted River Characters

John Irving


Dominic Baciagalupo (Tony Angel)
Dominic is a single father whose wife drowned ten years ago. He is Daniel’s father. Dominic is a cook at a logging and sawmill camp in Twisted River in northern New Hampshire. A series of unfortunate events prompt him to leave Twisted River with his twelve-year-old son, Daniel. One of the unfortunate accidents involves his lover, Injun Jane, who is also the mistress of Constable Carl, the sheriff in Twisted River. Dominic and Daniel travel for over fifty years throughout the United States and Canada. He works as a cook in restaurants.

Daniel Baciagalupo (Danny Angel)
Daniel is the son of Dominic and the narrator of the novel. His mother died when he was about two years old. When Daniel is twelve, he mistakenly attacks his beloved babysitter, Injun Jane; she is Dominic’s lover. To avoid any repercussions from this accident, Daniel and his father move continuously for the next fifty years to different locations in the United States and Canada. Daniel attends the University of Iowa Creative Writer’s Workshop and becomes a best-selling novelist. Daniel’s life as a writer closely parallels that of John Irving: both attended Iowa, were mentored by Kurt Vonnegut, and became best-selling authors. Daniel explains to the reader the process of writing—and clarifies the relationship, or lack thereof, between reality and fiction. He frequently expresses frustration with the media attention and the unreasonable expectations of a public figure.

He is a rugged logger in Twisted River and a close friend of Dominic Baciagalupo. Ketchum left school before his twelfth birthday. He had worked as a logger and also loading lumber onto railroad flatcars. Daniel’s mother taught him how to read.

Ketchum watches over Dominic and Daniel as they retreat from Twisted River after Injun Jane’s accidental death. A libertarian spirit, Ketchum’s role in the novel is as the...

(The entire section is 771 words.)