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How do the writers of The Red Room, The Signalman and The Man with the Twisted Lip create suspense in their stories?

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With particular reference to "The Red Room", How do the writers of "The Red Room", "The Signalman" and "The Man with the Twisted Lip" create suspense in their stories? In this essay I will be referring to three nineteenth century stories: The Red Room (1894) by H.G Wells, The Signalman (1865) by Charles Dickens and The Man with the Twisted Lip (1891) by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. My main focus will be on The Red Room. In the nineteenth century, there were so many things that was happening which might have led to each of these author to write their stories. For example, the new invention of the railway and trains in the early 1960's was a chosen setting for The Signalman. Having been a surviving victim in a train crash that occurred during this time, Charles Dickens used something he had experienced to write this story. In the 19th century, it depended on what class you were to be able to provide yourself with medicine, because of this, there were a huge amount of deaths. The popular medicine was Opium. Unfortunately, this drug was highly addictive so more and more people bought it. This is what probably led Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to write his story. The Red Room was probably written because, in the late nineteenth century, there was a lot of people that claimed that there were ghosts and that they had seem them, this is was probably why H.G Wells wrote The Red Room. ...read more.


At the very beginning of the story, he says that the only ever thing that could frighten him is a very tangible ghost. He also mentions that he is 28 years old and he has never set eyes on a ghost in the years he has lived. This creates huge suspense because, is this finally his moment of seeing a ghost? He has lived 28 years, has his day come? He seems certain that he will not see a ghost and even if he does, he is not the slightest bit scared (so he says). Whist analysing the ways of the narrator, I reckon that the reader learns that the narrator is a cowardly person that should have been honest from the start. If not that, he shouldn't have mentioned ghosts and there would have been a complete turn of events. However, by doing so, he has made himself participate in an unnecessary solo journey to a room, which had been rumoured to be full of ghosts. On the contrary, the story does start with the narrator speaking first, saying he is not scared of ghosts and that it would take a tangible one to frighten him. So, we have no clue of what had happened or what their conversation had been before the first line of the story. We also do not know what was going on in the authors' head at the time. The story is set in a castle. ...read more.


The old characters had kept going on and on as if they had set eyes on the ghost. They put pressure on the narrator knowing that he wasn't going to back down. They made the narrator realise that he has fear and is scared of things. So, the narrator also learns a lesson of not being to hard headed. In conclusion, before this essay I had read The Red Room, The Signalman and The Man with the Twisted Lip. I learned that all three stories were written in the gothic genre, which was very popular in the nineteenth century. The Red Room reflects more on the gothic genre than the other two stories. I focused on the way The Red Room creates tension and suspense in the use of words and that in the nineteenth century, they didn't use names to identify their characters or they didn't identify their characters compared to nowadays. The Red Room is effective in making the reader want to read on, this is because the words used are very powerful because every word the writer uses, you have to take into account. For example, when the narrator says that he is 28 years old and never seen a ghost, you wouldn't really think of it as anything until you think of all the ways to make you feel tension and suspense. The main way to see it is that he is still young and that he is bound to see a ghost especially in the eyes of the people living in the 19th century because rumours about people seeing ghosts had been going round quite a lot. Fergine Nzita 10o English ...read more.

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