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How Is Chapter 14 Typical of the Way Arthur Conan Doyle Creates Tension and Suspense in "The Hound Of The Baskervilles"?

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Introduction

How Is Chapter 14 Typical of the Way Arthur Conan Doyle Creates Tension and Suspense in "The Hound Of The Baskervilles"? Arthur Conan Doyle was on of the most successful writers of the Victorian Era. "The Hound Of The Baskervilles" was one of the more tense and suspenseful of his novels, and so was a huge success at that time and is still enjoyed today. I will be examining how, in the chapter of climax, Conan Doyle manages to create tension and suspense, and how this relates to the methods he has used during the rest of the book. He repeatedly uses several factors of the book to help create tension and suspense in the book. One of these is the feeling of the "unknown" which is often manifested in Holmes, as he seldom tells Watson everything, and as we are seeing events from Watson's point of view, we are left with the feeling of fear that all humans share for the unknown, "he was exceedingly loath to communicate his full plans to any other person until the moment of their fulfilment." This aspect of Holmes personality makes compelling reading in climactic chapter, as Watson does not know what Holmes is thinking, and the final stages of Holmes's plan are only revealed to Watson shortly before they occur, "we shall make our little ambush here." ...read more.

Middle

This is used effectively during Chapter 14: "My nerves... cold wind upon my face and the dark, void spaces... we were back upon the moor." Watson is relating his nerves to the blackness, and the fact that he couldn't see far over the moor. Though out the rest of the book, the moor and its vastness are mentioned occasionally: "the moor is very sparsely inhabited, and those who live near each other are thrown very much together." This quote shows that most people on the moor will know each other, and so the job of Holmes is made easier in working out who killed Sir Charles, as only so many people live on the moor. The fog is part of the moor's 'unknown vastness.' You cannot easily tell how thick fog is, and in which direction it will move, which when applied to Hound of the Baskervilles brings a sense of uncontrollability, it is described as "dense, white fog." The fog begins to come towards Holmes, Watson, and Lestrade in Chapter 14 as they wait outside Stapleton's house, and it is used to give a sense of urgency, as they will not be able to see very well if it reaches them: "Our success and even his life may depend upon him coming out before the fog is over the path." ...read more.

Conclusion

He talks about the moor as if it has some clandestine supernatural power, and is very figurative about his language: "Heads of distant tors as rocks borne upon its surface... It's sluggish drift" He says this as if comparing the mist to some monstrous slug, slowly encompassing the land before it, and that the peaks in the distance are borne along with it, giving the impression that the mist is more powerful than the tors themselves. This gives a feeling of tension and suspense in the climactic chapter, as it indicates that the men are not the only forces at work on that evening, ever enhancing the supernatural undertone of the book. The "Hound of the Baskervilles" is a novel which at first seems centred on the supernatural, and ghost stories, but in the end turns out to be a novel with a complex plot involving a cunning criminal. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle manages to create tension and suspense throughout the book, the most successful of the ways he has done it is probably the feeling of unknown that is featured, because it plays on the human fear of not knowing, a fear which we all share, and so makes the book more popular. Often, we find it far worse not knowing what is out there, than knowing the manifestation of our fear. ...read more.

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