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GCSE: Roald Dahl

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  1. Compare and contrast the way the writer's depict relationships between men and women in at least two of the short stories you have studied.

    The author's depicted relationships between men and women in a variety of ways, in Lamb to the Slaughter, the author's attitude showed how he could give defined roles, show a range of tension and convey a non-s****l relationship between a man and a woman. The writer depicts a weak relationship between the characters and gives an intriguing twist at the end. Though compared with Tony Kytes, the author has intended to convey many affairs between men and women which are s****l and emotional.

    • Word count: 6408
  2. Discuss the extent to which the characters and setting in 'Lamb to the Slaughter' and 'The Speckled Band' are typical of a horror story'

    Detective Maloney is a very dominant victim. He appears to the reader as quite a strong character, especially compared to his wife. This is conveyed in the quality of their drinks, 'a strongish one for him, a weak one for herself'. This conveys to the reader that Mrs. Maloney is to weak to handle a strong drink but Detective Maloney 'drained it in one swallow'. His position also emphasizes this as a detective is a very high and authoritative rank.

    • Word count: 3379
  3. Compare and Contrast 'The Speckled Band' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, which was written in the late 19th century, and 'Lamb to the Slaughter' by Roald Dahl, which was written in the 20th century.

    Patrick refuses and confesses something shocking, but Mary is still willing to cook dinner. Mary goes to the kitchen and pulls out a piece of lamb from the freezer. She goes back into the sitting room and without thinking or even having any doubts she swings the frozen lamb with great strength and blows it at the back of Patrick's head, killing him instantly. Mary then puts the piece of lamb in the oven. After that Mary invents an alibi and when the detectives arrive she cunningly feeds the murder weapon (piece of lamb)

    • Word count: 2579
  4. What are the similarities and differences between 'A Speckled Band' and 'Lamb to the Slaughter'? What effects did the writer use to make you want to read more?

    Both writers, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Roald Dahl use various effects to make the reader continue reading. In 'Lamb to the Slaughter' the story is about Mrs Mary Maloney who appears to be a loving housewife but turns out to be a psychotic killer. This story concentrates on the killer unlike other stories, which are either about the detective or the victim. This way of telling the story encourages the reader to continue reading as the story is told in a different viewpoint from other detective stories.

    • Word count: 1995
  5. "Lamb to the Slaughter" and "The Speckled Band" are two very different types of murder mystery. Describe some of the ways in which they are different and some of the ways in which they are the same.

    The murderer is a man of immense strength, "seized the poker and bent it into a curve." he has control over Helen and Julia, the two victims. "Five little livid spots, the marks of four fingers and a thumb printed upon the white wrist." This shows that Dr Roylott is strong and doesn't give any regards for his use of strength upon women. He is thoughtless and self-centred, like you would expect a murderer to be like. The two stories were written at different periods of time, "The Speckled Band" in the Victorian era, and "Lamb to the Slaughter" was written in the mid twentieth century.

    • Word count: 2974
  6. Comparing the two stories 'The Adventures of the Speckled Band' and 'The Lamb to the Slaughter'.

    We are taken back eight years to a case they solved. They were visited by a lady called Helen Stoner who explained her story from the moment her mother died to the most recent events. From there the story is slowly built up until the climax at the end when the case is solved. Conan Doyle is able to engage the reader by the affect of drama and atmosphere using short staccato sentences to convey excitement, movement and speed. Dynamic verbs such as 'rush' and 'groping' emphasises this. He is able to make the reader want to carry on by uncovering each clue one by one putting together the puzzle.

    • Word count: 1681
  7. Compare The Signalman by Charles Dickens and Lamb to the Slaughter by Roald Dahl. Consider how the writers' create suspense and the influences of the writers' backgrounds.

    This effects the reader's expectations of the stories. From reading the opening of Lamb to the Slaughter we expect that the story is going to be quite amiable this is ironic because as you read on you come to see how it is the exact opposite. However from reading the opening of The Signalman we expect that the story is going to be quite eerie and mysterious. We also get this idea from the description of the setting, for example in The Signalman it describes the setting as "the glow of an angry sunset."

    • Word count: 1743
  8. Discuss the difference between The Withered Arm and Lamb to the Slaughter.

    Patrick her husband, is a policeman. Their life is boring and repetitive; they have drinks each night before cooking dinner. Until one day Patrick comes home and tells Mary he is having an affair and wants a divorce. Mary kills Patrick by hitting him over the head with a frozen leg of lamb that they were going to eat that night. Later she cooks the frozen leg of lamb and feeds it to the policemen investigating the case. Thomas Hardy the author of 'The Withered Arm' who lived in a town called Wessex from 1840 to 1928.

    • Word count: 1936
  9. Comparte The Adventure of Abbey Grange and Lamb to the Slaughter.

    You could easily be fooled into believing it is a romance story. However, as Patrick comes home from work the mood begins to change. Firstly, you get rough, harsh noises that interrupt the peace and tranquillity of the house. For example, 'She heard the tyres on the gravel outside, the car door slamming, the footsteps passing the window, the key turning in the lock.' All this builds up to Patrick entering the room and Mary realising something is wrong. As well as sounds Dahl uses other means to create suspense.

    • Word count: 2187
  10. A comparison of modern murder mysteries against those written in the past.

    The victim in 'Lamb to the slaughter' flies in the face of tradition, Instead of the expected old fashioned view that females were the weaker s*x therefore they traditionally become the victims of the violent crimes that occur in murder mysteries but in this story the roles are reversed. The victim is in this story is a male police officer; he is also the murderer husband. Right from his entrance into the story we can tell that something is wrong.

    • Word count: 2304
  11. A Comparison of Two Murder Mysteries The Speckled Band by Arthur Conan And A Lamb to the Slaughter by Road Dahl.

    In the end of the Speckled band Sherlock Holmes discovers who was the murderer was, which was Dr Roylotts and what was use to kill Julia which was the snake and in the end of A lamb to the slaughter the police investigate the crime but instead they eat the only evidence which was the leg of lamb. The detective Sherlock Holmes is a much more experienced and important character than Jack Noonan and O Malley, it shows how experienced and experienced Sherlock Holmes is with Watson remarking " In glancing over my notes of the seventy odd cases in

    • Word count: 972
  12. Comparing Rhoda Brook-"The Withered Arm" and Mary Maloney-"Lamb to the slaughter".

    Mary - Mary Maloney is a character of a higher class as her husband's a policeman Similarities - Both women have been slighted and rejected by men, they both have a fairly subservient social role, they both gain some sort of revenge for the rejection and they both make some sort of attempt to cover up their guilt. They both make use (or think about making use) of their children (born and unborn), they both show characteristics of obsession at different times.

    • Word count: 2237
  13. How far are The Speckled Band and Lamb to the Slaughter typical of murder mysteries? How are the stories the same and how are they different? Compare the ways in which the stories are told.

    We studied another murder mystery aswell, a Jonathan Creek episode. This was a typical murder mystery, it was set in an old house, obviously there was a murder, there was a red herring (to throw the detective off-course) and the detective explained everything at the end. This story is very much like 'The Speckled Band', because in both stories all of the above happens and also something mysterious happens (in the Jonathan Creek story, the victim is found laying on the stairs with his hands under the door even though he was murdered and thrown on the floor at the

    • Word count: 1380
  14. Compare the main characters from Lamb to the Slaughter and The Tell Tale Heart.

    I think that she was obsessed with every detail about her life with this man. She almost lived a life of servitude. She loved to luxuriate in his presence. We know Mary Malony is obsessed with her unknowing victim, Mr. Malony, because at the very beginning of the story, she sets everything up so perfectly and so precisely. We know this because in the story it says "Now and again she would glance up at the clock, but without anxiety, merely to please herself with the thought that each minute gone by made it nearer the time when he would come."

    • Word count: 714
  15. Comparison between Murder Mystery stories - " Lamb to the slaughter" and "Speckled Band".

    This feeling for the reader continues throughout the story as we follow Mary's thoughts and feelings and not the detectives. This therefore makes this story untraditional, as we want the murderer to get away with the crime. Another way of showing the contrast in these stories is the murder weapon. A traditional murder weapon would be complex which needs a number of clues to find out. So in 'Speckled Band' where a snake was the weapon, this was not a foregone conclusion, clues had to be found in order for Sherlock to realize what the weapon was.

    • Word count: 3313
  16. Comparing a traditional murder story with an unconventional one -

    observe the second half of a return ticket in the palm of your left glove' The great detective is also extremely clever, this is so he can spot a red herring from a mile away. He is always one step ahead of everyone else. Now I'm moving on to talk about Sherlock Holmes' trusty companion Watson, Watson is less observant and less clever but he always reliable. Watson is the person who always asks for the explanations at the end of the story, once they have solved the mystery.

    • Word count: 1136
  17. Compare the murderers and their crimes, with attention to their description, in 'The Tell Tale Heart' by Edgar Allan Poe and 'Lamb to the Slaughter' by Roald Dahl.

    He then admits his crime to the officers as he thinks they can hear the noise and are mocking him. The story is told in 1st person narrative, from the murderers viewpoint which gives us a deeper insight into his mind and actions giving us a better understanding of his character. The atmosphere given in the story is tense, this is created by the murderer repeating himself a lot, which leaves us waiting anxiously for the next point, "Slowly - very, very slowly," this also leads us to believe he's insane, as normal people do not repeat themselves this much.

    • Word count: 941
  18. Write a comparative essay about two stories you have studied - Compare characters, theme, language and similarities and differences - Roald Dahl The landlady, and Wilkie Collins The Terribly Strange Bed.

    The landlady shows Billy to his room and then asks him to go to the living room and sign in the record book and have a cup of tea with her. Billy thinks that she is lonely and just looking for some company. Billy notices that there are two their names in the book that seem familiar to him and strangely that she has only had 2, other male guests. Then Billy notices she has only had two other male guests.

    • Word count: 1700
  19. 'As a murder mystery story, Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle's 'The Speckled Band' is far more effective than Roald Dahl's 'Lamb to the Slaughter'. Do you agree?

    The opening of 'The Speckled Band' begins with Sherlock Holmes being alerted by an unexpected early caller. He then goes to wake his companion and narrator of the story Dr. Watson. Watson is quite startled at being woken up so early. There is a feeling of urgency in the atmosphere and a certain amount of mystery and tension. The detectives wonder about what could be so important to bring a young woman to call on them at such an hour. I believe the opening of 'The Speckled Band' prepares the reader for a mysterious crime to unfold.

    • Word count: 2969
  20. Comparison of 'Lamb to the slaughter' and 'The Speckled Band'.

    Lamb to the Slaughter was written by Roald Dahl. It was first published in 1954. Lamb to the Slaughter has use of present day modern language so automatically gives the impression that it is written in present day modern and now. Roald Dahl was most famous for writing children stories but he did also write some books for adults like the tales of the unexpected which lamb to the slaughter featured in. Roald Dahl always writes about ordinary people who some how get involved with difficult problems with a dense solution in his adult stories.

    • Word count: 606
  21. Compare how Hardy and Dahl keep there readers interested in the stories, especially commenting on :1)The readers' reactions to the roles of women, 2)How the stories end/conclude, 3) Whether you think the men get what they deserve.

    Then the three women discover each other and then the women are angry at Tony. He asks each women if they'd be his and firstly one of the women named Hannah answers no followed by a women called Unity and then he asks Milly who he was going to marry at first if she would still marry him and she replies with yes as she is immature and believed then Tony was just having a joke with the two other women. The other story Lamb to the Slaughter is about a woman called Mary Maloney who is six months pregnant and spends her day at home perhaps lonely and waiting for her husband to arrive back from work.

    • Word count: 2315
  22. Compare and Contrast "Lamb To the Slaughter" with "The Speckled Band".

    any pause she swung the big frozen leg of lamb high in the air and brought it down as hard as she could on the back of his head". Mary Maloney was the victim in this story because even though she was an attentive wife her husband was going to leave her as a lone mother to raise a child by her self, "this was her sixth month with child" and "and I know it's kind of a bad time to be telling you, But there simply wasn't any other way.

    • Word count: 4975
  23. Critical Response – The Landlady.

    as he turns to leave, he notices the B&B sign in the window and is held by it and forced to walk up to the door and ring the bell. This turns the story around from a completely normal every day story to one full of mystery and strange events. I enjoyed this bit because it is really effective by making you want to read on. You want to find out why the sign draws him in and what is going on in the house to make it seem so mysterious.

    • Word count: 1415
  24. Explain the main similarities and differences between the two murder mystery stories "Lamb to the Slaughter" and "The Speckled Band".

    The opening of this side tracks you off the true story. The house seems too normal for such a terrible thing to occur and you expect that the murder will be accidental. In contrast to Lamb to the Slaughter's calming mood, the mood in The Speckled Band is exciting and full of confusion. Sherlock Holmes wakes our narrator up, because a distressed lady would like to see them in the sitting room. You feel confused because the narrator is slightly confused and put it across in his story.

    • Word count: 2625
  25. Looking at two short stories you have studied from mystery genres and discussing the similarities and differences between them.

    There is a detective or someone trying to find out who the killer is. There is the victim(s) who is or are killed by the killer. The murder is a mystery to people in the story or even in some cases both the audience and characters. There is also a weapon usually involved used by the killer to commit the crime. There is also a plan that the killer uses to try and not get caught or to do the killing. The stories of the mystery genre use many of the conventions, which I have stated above.

    • Word count: 1774

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