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Murder mysteries - Compare Lamb to the Slaughter and The Speckled Band.

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Introduction

Murder mysteries all have a similar plot consisting of a body, a motive, a weapon, a suspect, an alibi, and detectives. Viewers and readers expect this in the text, Lamb to the Slaughter and The Speckled Band are no exception. The structures of the two stories are very different, with The Speckled Band story unfolding in chronological order, finding out the murderer right at the end, however in the Lamb to the Slaughter, the murderer is known at the beginning of the story. The two stories are seen from two different points of view, first-person narrator in The Speckled Band as Dr Watson character within the story and therefore limited in understanding and the all-knowing third-person narrator or omniscient in Lamb to the Slaughter as the narrator stands outside the story itself and guide the reader's understanding of characters and the significance of their story. ...read more.

Middle

Also in The Speckled Band, Dr Roylott, is the evil, plotting, devious, fictional murderer; this character was portrayed in most murder mysteries stories written in the late 19 century. The Speckled Band was written in 1892. In the Lamb to the Slaughter we had no idea who the murderer and victim were going to be until the murder had been committed, in fact you might of thought the roles would have been reversed once reading the first few pages. The detectives in the story are portrayed as acting as typical modern police detectives, they eat the evidence! The detectives appear so stupid and useless compared to the marvellous and calculating Sherlock Holmes. The points of high tension are different in the two stories. In The Speckled Band the main point of high tension is right at the end when they find out who the murderer is and when the snake comes at Holmes "Holmes sprang from the bed, struck a match, and lashed furiously with his cane at the bell-pull." ...read more.

Conclusion

Both of the murders are set in the family home. In the Lamb to the Slaughter, "The room was warm and clean, the curtains drawn, the two table lamps alight." "The bedrooms in this wing are on the ground floor, the sitting-rooms being in the central block of the building," describes the house of Dr Roylott in The Speckled Band. From my perspective I think that the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle story, The Speckled Band is the most successful out of the two, as the author made the main character, Sherlock Holmes such an intriguing and interesting character, which draws the audience in. He leaves the reader in suspense until the end of the story until the murderer is revealed. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's stories are so well-know due to the stories being turned into films and shown on the television. ...read more.

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