• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
Page
  1. 1
    1
  2. 2
    2
  3. 3
    3
  4. 4
    4
  5. 5
    5
  6. 6
    6
  7. 7
    7
  8. 8
    8
  9. 9
    9

‘The Woman in Black’ by Susan Hill - How have the authors used the relationships between the main characters to create suspense?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Comparative Essay 'The Woman in White' by Wilkie Collins and 'The Woman in Black' by Susan Hill How have the authors used the relationships between the main characters to create suspense? 'The Woman in White' by Wilkie Collins and 'The Woman in Black' by Susan Hill are similar in many ways, although they were written in different centuries. They are both mystery novels, but there are differences in the way the mystery and suspense is created. 'The Woman in White' is written from many viewpoints, and most of the characters could be considered the main characters. In my opinion, the two characters whose presences are most important are Walter Hartright and Count Fosco, who can be considered the hero and villain of the book. Mr. Hartright is involved with every character in the book, but there are several characters with which he interacts with to create suspense in different ways. The first of these is Laura Fairlie (also known as Laura Glyde). The relationship between Laura and Walter begins as friendship, but grows and develops into love. As well as the suspense of the main storyline and mystery, there is the suspense created by the romance between Laura and Walter. The reader wants to know what will happen next, especially when Mr. Hartright's 'forebodings are realised', and Miss Fairlie becomes engaged to Sir Percival Glyde. Even after leaving the country for several months, Walter returns are confesses that, 'Laura Fairlie was in all my thoughts'. Finally, the couple marry, which surprises and pleases the reader. The second character that creates suspense when interacting with Mr. Hartright is Marian Halcombe. ...read more.

Middle

The story gradually unfurls from each point of view, continually building suspense. Once the relationship is revealed by Walter, and shortly afterwards, the Count is killed, and Mr. Hartright sees 'the dreadful end of that long life of degraded ability and heartless crime'. Mr. Hartright states perfectly calmly that he had been 'struck by a dagger or knife exactly over his heart'. The reader conceives his calmness as coldness, but the following sentences remind the reader of the terrible nature of the chain of events he controlled, and the reader can relate to Walter Hartright, and is eager to learn how the book finishes. 'The Woman in Black' has very few characters in comparison to 'The Woman in White', and so uses their relationships to create suspense in different ways. In my opinion, the two main characters in the book are Arthur, from whose viewpoint the book is written, and the woman in black herself. This is similar to the good and evil relationship of the two main characters in 'The Woman in White'. Most of the points of interest and suspense in the book are in the relationship between these characters, and their relationships with others. Arthur makes very few personal relationships in the book, as he is in an unknown town and is very much isolated. One of the relationships he does make is with Samuel Daily. One of the strongest moments in their friendship is in chapter 11. Arthur is troubled by his repeated sightings of ghosts and being uncertain of what he has seen and heard. Arthur sees Samuel as a 'reassuring presence', and the reader can see that Mr. ...read more.

Conclusion

The relationship is one where one of the people involved is trying to protect and care for the other, and in each case, the couple is separated, although in 'The Woman in White', Walter and Laura are re-united. Another similar relationship is one of friendship. The friendship of Samuel Daily and Arthur in 'The Woman in Black' can be compared top two relationships in 'The Woman in White'. The first is the friendship between Laura Fairlie and Marian Halcombe. In these relationships, Miss Halcombe and Samuel know more about the situation than they are willing to tell their friend, and, again, are trying to protect them. The other relationship is that of Walter Hartright and Marian Halcombe, as each pair are sharing a secret and anticipating the villains next move together. The relationship between Walter Hartright and Anne Catherick can be compared to the relationship between Arthur and the Woman in black, as in each case, one of the characters is very mysterious, and the other character is very occupied with unravelling the mystery. This final comparison is the most important as it is the basis of each book, and in this way the books are very similar. However, the way the relationships are used to create suspense is very different in each book. In my opinion, 'The Woman in White' is the better book. I think that the relationships between the characters are more complicated, which makes the book more enjoyable to read, and builds suspense more. Also, the motive of the villain is more complex, and therefore the ending is more surprising, and the plot contains more twists. However, each book uses the relationships between the characters well to develop the story and build suspense. ...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 Miscellaneous 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 Miscellaneous essays

  1. How does Arthur Miller explore the theme of masculinity in A View from the ...

    He uses the relationships between Eddie and Marco, Rodolpho, Catherine and Beatrice to show true feelings, that otherwise may have remained hidden. He uses different themes such as honour, betrayal, jealousy, aggression and loyalty. He also varies the way the characters act and speak to one another, which might suggest homosexuality, jealousy, aggression, honour and betrayal.

  2. Catherine's diary - 'A View From The Bridge'

    Eddie says 'Don't make me do nuttin' to Catherine. By using double negatives 'Don't' and 'nuttin' Miller stresses the forcefulness threat that Eddie is making against her. He then threatens Rodolfo by calling him 'submarine', that name reminding both characters that Rodolfo is vulnerable as he is an illegal immigrant.

  1. Shylock, Victim or Villain

    As a modern audience we would understand that Shylock wants revenge as he has been treated so badly by Antonio. Shylock is a villain in this scene "why dost thou whet thy knife so earnestly?" Shylock thinks he has already won at the start of the scene which is gruesome and overconfident; Shylock is definitely a villain in this scene.

  2. The Great Gatsby: Characters

    Their placement in the Valley of Ashes is described as "a fantastic farm where ashes grow like wheat into ridges and hills and grotesque gardens; where ashes take the forms of houses and chimneys and rising smoke and, finally, with a transcendent effort, of men who move dimly and already crumbling through the powdery air."

  1. The Pesthouse comparative

    of some world that never was or some world that never will be, and you're happy again, then you'll have given up. And if you give up then you'll have no chance of living. Do you understand? And you can't give up, I won't let you.'"(159).

  2. Adrian Mole Chapter Notes

    Nigel has asked Adrian to go to a disco, Adrian does not know if he will go as Nigel is a punk at weekends. Adrian's mother has an interview and she is practising typing, so she is not cooking. January 23rd Adrian swears that he will never to go a disco again.

  1. Adventure begins here.

    I also remembered the cold arms of my rescuer, the exact opposite of my father. I had been mystified, he had been so beautiful and yet it felt so surreal. My twelve year old memories were cemented in my brain, the house fire, when Mum had met Hugh...

  2. Explore the representation of Evil in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

    They were both un-provoked acts of violence, and on both occasions the culprit, Hyde, was caught. The first crime that was committed was the unfortunate incident with a little girl who was on her way home, when she was trampled over by Hyde.

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