Origins of literature’s great characters

In a mixed review of André Bernard’s Madame Bovary, C’est Moi! The Greatest Characters of Literature and Where They Came From, John Gross shares some of Bernard’s revelations:

Interesting scraps of information are doled out along the way. We learn that Scott Fitzgerald thought that Daisy’s husband in The Great Gatsby was a more significant character than Gatsby himself; that Kurtz in Heart of Darkness was originally going to be called Klein; that the “Nero” of Rex Stout’s Nero Wolfe is because Stout wanted his famous detective to have the same kind of first name as his own, something Roman and autocratic.

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