• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

This essay is going to illustrate how 'The red room' by H.G Wells and 'The farthing house' by Susan Hill to a certain degree are typical of the horror, ghost story genre.

Extracts from this document...


This essay is going to illustrate how 'The red room' by H.G Wells and 'The farthing house' by Susan Hill to a certain degree are typical of the horror, ghost story genre. The Red Room is a traditional gothic story, which in Victorian times would have been very popular with the readers. The author H.G Wells creates suspense in an unusual way rather than describe fear in to the readers mind with the use of long silences which have been known to work, the author develops the sense of fear without telling the reader why the fear exists in the first place. Since imagination is a human's most powerful tool, if not very helpful in scary circumstances, H.G Wells approach works creating almost like a cerebral psychosomatic thriller. The story itself is characterized by the deserted and dilapidated 'Loraine castle' which creates an effectual plot to add to the ghoulish ambiance. The Farthing house is more subtle in its approach it is a ghost story never the less in a modern everyday setting and time era, which should be very familiar to the reader. 'Farthing House' has a physical encounter, which creates the idea of a ghost story in a modern context. A sense of anxiety is created almost immediately in the opening sequences of 'The Red Room'. The storyteller is youthful, confident, skeptical, and arrogant and patronizing as H.G Wells uses the characterization of the narrator through out the story to add frisson and dramatic irony through his emotions. The first person narrative familiarizes us with the character and immediately anticipation is built up, as we only know as much as the storyteller knows. As the tale progresses, three elderly custodians pierce into the story. H.G Wells uses them to create a sense of dismay and darkness by their company within the castle. H.G Wells cunningly creates an eerie and negative impression, by the clever description of the elderly people. ...read more.


The setting of the scene immediately changes. H.G Wells makes a contrast of the dark, evil night to the light, safe morning. It is in the safe morning, where the narrator explains the ordeal of the red room to the custodians. With the narrator in the daylight, where he feels safe, he says, "There is neither ghost of earl nor ghost of countess in that room, there is no ghost there at all; but far worse...." "Fear". It is then the story ends in a dramatic climax, in which he explains that, theirs no ghost but fear, which are built inside by the actions of others. There is so much fear that it leads to mental paranoia. For example, the narrator speaks about an unexpected presence. "...as one might start and see the unexpected presence of a stranger." That presence was the creation of paranoia in the mind of the narrator. H.G Wells cleverly leaves the story quite open. As the ending, raises more questions than the story can answers. 'Farthing house', by Susan Hill, starts the story, almost exactly like The Red Room, in the way that, both narrators' create suspense in the opening paragraph. 'Farthing house' is also written in the first person narrative, as this seems to be a direct technique in which a ghost story writer uses to be direct and to express the fear and panic that the narrator illustrates to the reader. "I have never told you any of this before-I have never told anyone, and indeed, writing it down and sealing it up for a future date may still not count for 'telling'. But I shall feel better for it, I am sure of that." Straight away the narrator is showing some urgency and anxiety to the reader. She seems to be telling us something confidential and confessional as that creates fretfulness and leave's the reader in bewilderment. ...read more.


This may be because the psychological fear may not be of a huge disparity. For example in 'The Red Room' the other characters had a major part in the build up of tension. Where as in Farthing house, the characters played a smaller role in creating tension but instead create a negative atmosphere. The narrator tells the reader that she feels 'terrible melancholy' as she creates a cold atmosphere within her cleverly described emotions. The narrator tells the reader, straight after the encounter, that at the second encounter the ghost was present. She also admits that she is 'depressed,' and 'distressed,' due to the encounters with the ghost. The narrator ends the story by adding an ominous atmosphere to create frission. She tells the reader that 'it was dark, dreadful, helpless feeling and with no sense of foreboding.' The concluding part of the story, Susan Hill explains to a larger extent than H.G Wells. Susan Hill creates a more of a conclusion where as 'The Red Room' leave's the reader to draw his or her own conclusions. At the last parts of the story, the narrator stumbles across a gravestone at a nearby church. This gravestone belonged to a mother who died with her infant. She then goes to the vicar for answers, and the vicar explains as her sentiments are centred on pity and sorrow. Both writers' techniques, in creating setting, atmosphere and tension all seem to be similar in one way or another. But Hill uses little hints of the genre to give slight more hope of a ghost. Hill uses the past in creating referable links from which deductions can be made. For example: the women who encountered a ghost, which was reported on the newspapers. She develops the characters by creating atmosphere, for example the bad events that later builds up to create tension. Where as Wells, uses the narrator's mentality psych of the setting. Both stories have built up a really menacing atmosphere of a ghost story genre. But Wells seems to integrate the classic genre elements, which the readers are more familiar with. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE H.G. Wells section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE H.G. Wells essays

  1. In the following essay I will be comparing two books from the ghost story ...

    Both of the stories contain some elements that are typical of the "ghost story" genre. They are both set mainly at night with all of the scary parts happening at night (the young mans experiences in the Red Room and when the woman sees the ghost)

  2. The story the man who could work miracles by H.G. Wells is a powerful ...

    Fotheringay performed, they all reacted more shocked and scared than what actually you would imagine them to be. It gives the impression, aswell as the language he uses, that something is going to happen, a warning of what is to come.

  1. 19th Century Victorian Horror Stories: English Literature Coursework: How 19th Century writers of horror ...

    At this point in the story a frightening, dark secret had just been revealed to Malcomson and the readers, so the added factor of unnatural sounds echoing throughout the house due to the bad weather makes the situation even more terrifying.

  2. Free essay

    Comparing The Red Room (H.G Wells) and The Yellow Wallpaper (Charlotte Perkins)

    unfortunate man, questions about the man and his involvement with the Red Room will be on the young man's mind. This reinforces the sense of intrigue, but apprehensive intrigue. If anything goes wrong whilst the young man is in the Red Room, this amputee will not be able to help him at all.

  1. Show how H.G. Wells presents the theme of loneliness and its effects upon one ...

    Consequently, Marvel fled from Griffin. In my opinion, Griffin by becoming invisible has completely withdrawn himself from society. He thought he could survive without society by imposing a 'Reign of Terror', to terrify and dominate the community. He viciously thought that by being invisible he could survive alone and gain the upper hand in the community.

  2. What are the important characteristics of an effective ghost story?

    As mentioned before in 'The Red Room' Wells uses personification to add fear to the story. He describes the shadows as; 'crouching', 'stirring', 'shifting' and says that they 'cowered and quivered' which gives the impression that the shadows are following him ready to 'waylay' him.

  1. Examine the ways in which HG Wells creates atmosphere in The War of the ...

    It continues by saying that passers-by would not have realized the emergency taking place as the aliens were hidden by piles of sand. This makes the reader feel anxious because the situation is still growing whilst passers-by are oblivious to what is happening.

  2. How do H.G Wells and E. Allen-Poe create an atmosphere of fear and tension ...

    The use of staccato rhythm adds to theme of madness, he says he isn't mad but he says it like he is. There is a wide range of punctuation used such as dashes, semi colons and exclamation marks. this adds to the feeling of pace and building tension as the story progresses.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work