With Reference to Collins A Terribly Strange Bed and Conan Doyle's Essay

With Reference to Collins A Terribly Strange Bed and Conan Doyle's Essay

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With Reference to Collins A Terribly Strange Bed and Conan Doyle's
Speckled Band, Discuss How Both Authors Create Mystery and Tension.

Although these short stories are fictional and were written in the mid
19th Century they are crime dramas containing stereotypical images of
the villains of the time. These include social outcasts such as Dr
Roylott and Monsieur Faulkner. Many writers use suspense in their
stories in order to excite the reader more and to make them want to
turn over to the next page. This is can be done by giving the reader
some information, but not enough for him or he to be able to answer
the mystery or riddle that they may be trying to solve.

'The Speckled Band' focuses on the Roylott family, of Stoke Moran in
Surrey. The family includes twin sisters Julia and Helen Stoner, and
their stepfather Dr Grimesby Roylott.

The readers' first impression of Helen Stoner is that she is grieving
over someone's death, due to her appearance. She is "dressed in black
and heavily veiled". The reader is encouraged to feel sympathy for
Helen Stoner and anxious to find out who has died and how, as she is
clearly in mourning. The simile used to portray her fear and suggests
she is weak and vulnerable, maybe even the next victim. "Restless
frightened eyes, like those of some hunted animal", indicates to the
reader how she is being "hunted" like some kind of prey. This assists
in building the suspense, as the reader is unaware of the details of
the death, it is still a mystery.

Conan Doyle's use of nouns, when Helen is speaking, suggests how
scared she is. "It is fear, Mr Holmes. It is terror", illustrates that
either Helen Stoner is exaggerating the situation, or something
terrible has happened to c...


... middle of paper ...


...hen the story would be a complete failure because we would
know he survives, yes there would be an adventure but it wouldn't grab
the audiences attention and they wouldn't feel involved in the story.
Therefore I think both authors go about creating mystery and ttension
the best possible way because if they swapped round and Holmes was
telling the story then the audience wouldn't want to get involved and
the same with "a terribly Strange bed"

Both authors create suspense in their own way that in my opinion are
as effective as each other but I felt more eager to turn over the page
in "The Speckled Band"

Also the description of the setting is successful in creating the most
suspense, as the use of darkness suggests something is going to
happen. We don't find out a lot about the setting in "A Terribly
Strange Bed" but it his little relevance to the story.

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