• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

‘The Speckled Band’ and ‘Lamb to the Slaughter’

Extracts from this document...


Jenny B Detective Fiction: a comparison of 'The Speckled Band' and 'Lamb to the Slaughter' Crime detective stories are very popular. Mid nineteenth century the morbid fascination crime began when Arthur Conan Doyle created Sherlock Holmes the master of detection. Since then Sherlock Holmes has been the basis of all other detectives. Stories have been based on the plot as well, because crime stroies from the nineteenth century have the same moral view of the writer, that evil is punished and murder is usually the crime, as it is in the readers mind the worst crime commitable. 'The Speckled Band' and 'Lamb to the Slaughter' written by Roald Dahl are both detective crime stories, although written very differently. I am going to write how the crime genre has changed with time. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote 'The speckled Band' in 1892. Sherlock Holmes character has set the stage for all stereotypical detectives, he is the archetypal of al detectives and the role he plays in the 'Speckled Band' is no exception. Sherlock Holmes is one of the most famous and popular detectives. Doyle's stories are always stereotypical, this increases their popularity 'The Speckled Band' is a stereotypical story. In 'lamb to the Slaughter' there is a detective but we do not know as much of him like we do Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock Holmes dresses the way the reader expects him to a tweed deerstalker hat, cape, pipe and trusty magnifying glass. ...read more.


Dahl wants you to like her he wants you to feel sorry for her and to loathe Patrick, Dahl even wants you to be fond of her even when she kills Patrick. Dahl leads the reader to believe that he deserves it because he is a cold and selfish man '...there needn't be a fuss...it wouldn't be very good for my job'. When Mary kills Patrick with a frozen leg of lamb we see him become weak and Mary strong, because Patrick never suspected Mary would stand up to him. The reader then sees a change come over Mary; she becomes clever and cunning. Something that would never have been in a Sherlock Holmes crime story as women were portrayed as weak and had to be protected. Mary proceeds to create an alibi, a trip to the green grocers, before calling the police. When she returns, she acts as if everything was normal 'mind you, she wasn't expecting to find anything' Her strange behaviour is acting, but Dahl shows Mary as slightly deranged then changes it around to sound humorous, especially when Mary returns from the grocers and knows she will find Patrick's body, but pretends she knows nothing, she begins to '...cry her heart out. It was easy. No acting was necessary' Dahl uses the humour of the situation to make it appear sarcastic. ...read more.


There is no justice; even so Mary getting away scott free is justice in its self. Dahl uses a lot of humour and sarcasm in Lamb to the slaughter, especially to do with the murder weapon, a frozen leg of lamb, hence the title 'Lamb to the Slaughter'. The title also has other significance because the phrase 'lamb to the slaughter' also means someone or something innocent is killed and lambs are small and na�ve creatures that are easy to kill. Lambs are also weak, not strong police inspectors. Right from the start then Dahl's tone is sarcastic even the title is serious. 'Speckled Band' on the other hand is completely opposite; it is serious in every sense. Dahl's style is very different from the stereotypical detective story too. His story is short and uncomplicated; the reader doesn't have time to get bored or confused, because the only question is will she get caught? The story is simpler to read as well, the vocabulary is modern and easy, and the dialogue is ver informal, Dahl uses lots of slang 'there's plenty of meat and stuff in the freezer' more evidence to show how the genre has changed with time. Doyle's style however is very serious and the language is very formal, so formal that words, which would be used then, you would not even consider to enter into modern conversation now 'the ejaculation has been drawn from my companion'. Even when people are horrible or desperately frightened their language or attitude always is formal. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Roald Dahl section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Roald Dahl essays

  1. Discuss how suspense and tension are created in‘Lamb to the Slaughter’ and ‘The Speckled ...

    At this point we don't know what it is he wants to tell her and that causes the suspense and tension to go up. Similarly in 'The Speckled Band' the suspense is high when we care told Dr Grimsby Roylott is a violent man who has killed in the past.

  2. Detective Fiction comparison 'Lamb to the Slaughter' & 'The Red Headed League'.

    Holmes' detection is influenced by happenings of two previous months and the story takes place in 2-3 days, as Holmes needs time to put the pieces of the puzzle together.

  1. Compare and contrast the two short stories ‘ Lamb to the Slaughter’ and ‘ ...

    When Mr Maloney says he has to tell Mary something and you don't find out what it is adds suspense to the story and what he tells Mary is the motive to kill him. So it must have been such shocking news that it drove her to kill the man she loves.

  2. Compare ‘The Adventure of The Speckled Band’ and ‘Lamb to the Slaughter’ referring to ...

    The wife says "Hullo darling" and she takes his coat and hangs it in the closet, which is very calm and normal. I think it starts this way to make the reader want to read what is going to happen next, and to get the reader a little bit confused to they want to know what is going to happen.

  1. An Examination of How the Authors of ‘the Speckled Band’ and ‘ Lamb To ...

    Clearly Watson greatly admires Holmes and because Watson has been made likeable and respected by the reader, they too, are encouraged to view Holmes in this way. The setting of murder mysteries is often crucially important in adding to the atmosphere surrounding the plot.

  2. Explore How The Women Are Portrayed In The Texts The Withered Arm and Lamb ...

    She is not seen making any attempt to win or to please him, unlike the other two characters in their behaviour towards Farmer Lodge and Patrick Maloney respectively. We learn in the first chapter from the gossip in the

  1. Comparing 'Lamb to the Slaughter' written in the mid-twentieth century, and 'The Speckled Band' ...

    The second plot twist is at the end, where the detectives eat the murder weapon. Conan-Doyle used techniques in writing "The Speckled Band" also. His story revolves around the character of the detective, Sherlock Holmes. The story, though centred on Holmes, is told as seen through the eyes of Dr Watson.

  2. Comparing Roald Dahl's 'Lamb to the Slaughter' 1954 and 'The Speckled Band' by Sir ...

    Dr Roylott does have a few seconds when the reader is impressed by him: 'Professional skill and force of character '. This is the only positive statement about the character as after this, Conan Doyle details Dr Roylott's past: 'Fit of anger .

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work