Roald Dahl was a Welsh fighter pilot, poet, and author of children's novels who lived from 1916 to 1990. He is, perhaps, one of the most influential literary figures of the 20th century, having written masterpieces like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach. He also wrote scripts for the films Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the James Bond film You Only Live Twice.
Dahl's literary works are thoroughly imaginative and irreverent, sometimes steering toward the macabre or ridiculous. He often incorporated personal experiences and feelings into his writing — as a boy, he had the opportunity to taste-test chocolate bars for the confectioner Cadbury and would daydream about the people who worked to invent candy. Though awash in frivolity and strange happenings, Dahl's writing carries heavy themes of morality. As exemplified in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Dahl believed and wrote that people of poor character would bring failure upon themselves, and those of good heart would succeed.