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Conan Doyle's hero Sherlock Holmes was popular in Victorian and Edwardian society for many reasons. What, in your opinion, makes the story "The Speckled Band" exciting and successful?

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Introduction

Conan Doyle's hero Sherlock Holmes was popular in Victorian and Edwardian society for many reasons. What, in your opinion, makes the story "The Speckled Band" exciting and successful? In the story "The Speckled Band", the author, Conan Doyle uses various techniques to make it exciting and very successful. The story itself, is a very good example of the detective genre of fiction, and reflects widely the attitudes held in both Victorian and Edwardian society. However, even with this in mind the story is still popular today, and I will be exploring the reasons behind this fact, and finding out why it is still very popular. One of the main things that stands out when reading the Sherlock Holmes stories is the large amount of character development and description: "Her features and figure were those of a woman of thirty, but her hair was shot with premature grey, and her expression was weary and haggard." This shows that Conan Doyle describes the character so that the reader can picture him or her and so drawing them into the plot more. Another thing used by Conan Doyle is charicatures: "While his deep set, bile shot eyes, and the high thin fleshless nose, gave him somewhat the resemblance to a fierce old bird of prey" This charicature of Dr. ...read more.

Middle

clues and evidence, the build up to the capture of the suspect and then the actual capture of the person and a description of how he or she did it. 1:The introduction: "My name is Helen Stoner, and I am living with my stepfather, who is the last survivor of one of the oldest Saxon families in England. This introduces the person in distress and makes it clear straight away that her and her family are rich and quite high up in the class system. 2:The gathering of clues: "They seem to have been of a most interesting character-dummy bell ropes, and ventilators which do not ventilate." These clues are told to the reader so that he or she is involved with the story as they try and figure out how the crime was committed and by whom. This helps to draw the reader in and keep them reading, whilst red herrings keep them from finding out the truth before it is told in the story. 3:The build up: "You have evidently seen more in these rooms than was visible to me." "No, but I fancy I have deduced a little more." In this part Sherlock Holmes always tells both Watson and the reader very little about what he has found out and what he thinks, which is always delayed until the very end of the story. ...read more.

Conclusion

Also, Conan Doyle has spent time considering Sherlock Holmes' habits, like smoking a pipe as he sits in a chair, and his overall intelligence that the reader finds both exciting and fascinating, making an overall picture of a suave and sophisticated person. Also, because Holmes is in all of the stories, we get to learn about him over a number of stories and so the character develops further. This keeps the reader enthralled in the series and so helps to make the stories more exciting, because we wonder how Holmes is going to solve the crime this time, and we like to see the developments in his character. This development in character is what held such a grip on people, for example, when Conan Doyle tried to kill Sherlock Holmes off in "The Adventure of the Final Problem", there was a public outcry and people were so upset that more than twenty thousand cancelled their subscription to the Strand magazine (where the stories were printed). This shows how much people loved the character and how much they had come to believe in him because of the amount of believable thinking that had gone into him. This is what I think makes the story "The Speckled Band" so popular in modern times, and what made it so popular in Victorian times. ...read more.

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