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Compare and Contrast 'Lamb to the Slaughter' by Roald Dahl and 'The Speckled Band' by Sir Authur Conan Doyle.

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Introduction

Compare and Contrast 'Lamb to the Slaughter' by Roald Dahl and 'The Speckled Band' by Sir Authur Conan Doyle. I am going to compare and contrast 'The Speckled Band to the 'Lamb to the Slaughter' which are both mystery stories. 'The Speckled Band' was written in the year 1883 by Sir Conan Authur Doyle and the 'Lamb to the Slaughter' was written in the 1950's by Roald Dahl. 'The Speckled Band' is a mystery story narrated by Dr. Watson the co-inspector of Sherlock Holmes. Dr. Watson tells the story of a case previously solved by Holmes. A woman called Helen Stoner came to tell him about her twin sister Julia's mysterious death before her marriage. The main suspect is Dr. Roylott the stepfather of Helen. He is an aggressive man with a motive for murder. Helen thinks the same fate will befall her because she is getting married and staying in the same room as her late sister. While investigating the case Holmes decides to stay in the room that Julia had died in. Holmes resolves the case finding out that Roylott had sent a snake to kill Julia. 'Lamb to the Slaughter' is another mystery story. It is a story about a couple. ...read more.

Middle

Julia Stoner's (Dr. Roylott's Stepdaughter and victim) murder was pre-meditated by Dr. Roylott unlike the murder in 'Lamb to the Slaughter', which was a moment of confusion and distress from Mrs. Maloney who was confused and distressed and acted on impulse. Mrs. Maloney was on top of things and had everything well planned by creating an alibi .She was using her intellect and her phoney acting to make the detectives believe that she was in utmost distress. Unlike Mrs. Maloney, Dr. Roylott was showing his aggression and roughness to try to scare Sherlock Holmes off his back, which didn't work but simply stimulated Holmes' desire to solve the case. He was very observant and suspicious towards his stepdaughter's (Helen) movements like following her when she visited Holmes. In both stories the victims were defenceless and unaware of the danger they were in, they were also related to the murderer and lived in the same house. In "The Speckled Band" Julia heard whistling noises at night, which was the snake. The murder was pre-meditated and well planed by a number of things; firstly, the dummy bell ring; secondly, the bed bolted to the floor, thirdly the ventilation was leading to the other room; Significantly the main one was the possession of the actual snake and the training of it by the milk. ...read more.

Conclusion

The Maloney family were of middle class and the husband was a police officer. The writing of 'The Speckled Band' is in very complex and detailed sentences in comparison to 'Lamb to the Slaughter', which is simple and easy to read. Dr. Watson who is the co-inspector in 'The Speckled Band' narrates the story, whereas in 'Lamb to the Slaughter', the story is mostly narrated by the first person but occasionally Mary Maloney (the murderer and the wife of the victim) narrates some parts. The sentence in 'The Speckled Band' is in the older fashion of writing. On the other hand 'Lamb to the Slaughter' is written in modern term and straightforward to read. I would recommend 'The Speckled Band' as an original and classical detective story because of the details and mysteries throughout the story. It consists of all the requirements of an outstanding detective and mystery story. Every incident was full of suspense and excitement so much so that I was forced to turn page, after page. The plot is simply irresistible and I believe it will seize the attention of any reader. 'Lamb to the Slaughter' is also a brilliant mystery story, but I wouldn't recommend it for someone who is looking for a nerve racking detective story. It is easy and enjoyable to read. It consists mysteries, a good plot with a touch of humour at the end. Mizanul Hoque 10M 08/10/2001 1 ...read more.

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