male guests. Then Billy notices the parrot and dog are both stuffed and the landlady tells him she “stuff all her pets”. She then tells Billy that the two pervious guests are still on the third floor. Billy also notices that his tea tastes strange like bitter almonds. The Terribly Strange Bed The story is about two English men in France both wants to go gambling but not to a posh gambling house but to an authentic, rough, down to earth one! The first young English man starts to gamble and the other man leaves him there warning him that he doesn’t trust this house. The first English man continues gamble and luck is on his side because he wins many games. So much that the gambling house has to close up the bank as they have run out of money some of the others are a bit hostile towards the young man. This is perhaps why he befriends the old solder that warns him to hide his money in a knotted handkerchief to keep it safe. The English man trusts the Old French solider who suggests they go and get some champagne to celebrate. The English man is now so drunk that he cant get back to his hotel, so the soldiers suggest he stay in an upstairs room in the pub. “They make capital beds in this house take one; sleep off the effects of the wine, and go home safely with winning tomorrow”. The old solider offers the English man a coffee to sober him little does he know that the coffee is drugged and the English man stumbles too bed drunk and disorientated. The bed is like the style of a four poster bed but has a canopy which descends to suffocate the occupants of the bed the English man puts his handkerchief, with the money, under his pillow so it’s safe. Then the man so he ties the handkerchief to the back of his cravat (tie) because when he lies down on his bed he sees the canopy moving down as if its going to crush him to death. The English man panics runs the window and alerts the police. The police return to the pub, tell the Englishman to hide behind them. The police discover the pub is own by the old solider as is the gambling house. The police also discover that hundreds off men have been drugged suffocated and thrown in the seine (French River). The old solider and his accomplish, a women who worked at the pub had been trying to steal back all the money won at the gambling house. The old solider had been thrown out of the army and was a thoroughly rotten and evil man! The English man survived death and lived to tell the tale but never gambled or played cards again. My favourite character from the first story was the Landlady because she was clever and cunning and a little psychotic. As she tempts Billy into the B&B, she gives him a “warm welcoming smile” which makes you think she is already thinking about killing him and stuffing him. Plus the idea of stuffing him is a little out of the ordinary. She gives him little clues as if playing with him, daring him to make sense of them and escape e.g. “I stuff all my little pets” and my guests never leave”As a reader you didn’t know if she would slip and Billy would figure out what happened to the pervious guests also if she gets away with killing him or does he escape.My least favourite character is Billy because he is very naïve and cannot see the clues and comments that lead to the conclusion that her only two guests have been kill and stuffed and he’s next! He is just 17 and is beginning his working life with his whole future ahead of him, he is intrigued by the B&B and the landlady making the assumption that she is lonely, frail and e.g. “probably lost her son to war and is lonely.” He enjoys the compliment that we can see as clues e.g. “you have the most beautiful teeth Mr Weaver.“ In the second story my favourite character was the victim this time, as we do not feel so frustrated that the English man does not see the clues, as he escapes the attempt and involves the law and gets justice. Although the English man is drugged and a bit drunk he still manages to thwart the attempt on his life from the old solider and this makes the story exciting.I think the character is naïve because his friend leaves him warning him about the atmosphere of the gambling clue after he wins all the money but he still stays and plays on. My least favourite character in this story is the old solider because it is a classic killer and killed tale and the old soldiers scheme has worked in the past and killed many unsuspecting victims.Although I loved the idea of the moving canopy smothering the occupant of the bed, I disliked the character.Although both stories are quite similar in context they are both written in various ways.Collins builds up tension and atmosphere by writing in long sentences and not many clues where as Dahl’s is clear and descriptive giving many clues e.g. “the parrot did not make a sound” “the dog didn’t move” ”the names in the register ring a bell”Both writers use a lot of punctuation in the context, Dahl’s uses it to give clues and leaves a lot to the reader imagination but Collins uses it to draw out the information to make you suspicious. E.g. “he spoke –“my dear friend, it would be madness to go home in your state; you would be sure to lose your money; you might be robbed and murdered with the greatest of ease.”The language of the second story is very sophisticated which makes it hard to read fluently and becomes more difficult to understand, some of the words are explained at the bottom of the page. This may discourage some readers.Dahl’s language is easier to understand and is more modern and interests more readers.As well as having a lot of dialog, which brings the story alive and helps explain the story.Although the second story is include the attempt to take the life of the English man, the build of tension and atmosphere if quicker in the first story and after it unravels it is quite predictable. The other builds quite slowly and takes many turns. I noticed that the paragraphs vary in length e.g. Collins are very long and Dahl’s quite short making it difficult for the reader to follow the story in the second and it seem to be twice as long The characters in both stories are similar in the way of the naïve victims and the evil vindictive killers. But in theme, story setting and ending they are quite different. Collins is set in France and has the ending to it, Dahl’s is set in England and leaves you on a cliff hanger, no knowing whether Billy will die due to the old Landlady or will he live and discover her secret. The stories are similar in the way that they both are mysteries and murder and in the way both victims are drugged e.g. ”I was seized by with a fit of giddiness, and felt more completely intoxicated than ever” (The Terribly Strange Bed). " The tea tasted faintly of bitter almonds and he didn’t care much for it" (The Landlady) Then theme of both stories was similar because both victims were travelling away from home the first for work and the other for pleasure. In conclusion I think that the terribly strange bed was the most interesting read and that the landlady was more frustrating. I like the fact the second story had an ending and did not give so many clues and the story was less predictable. Although the language was more complicated it was still my favourite story.