Essay on Gothic Short Stories

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Gothic Short Stories

Gothic stories are usually dark and mysterious, set mostly at night, and frequently have the appearance of bad weather. Gothic stories hit a peak in Victorian times, when Jack the Ripper and other famous lawbreakers struck fear into peoples hearts.

This grim time was not helped by the very inefficient police force, this left people wanting to hear of more heroes in their world. I have read 3 famous gothic short stories, and in my essay I am going to explore them in detail to decide how suspense has been created, and how effective this is.

The three stories are:

The Body-Snatcher

The Red Room

The Adventure of the Speckled Band.

All of these titles
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All gothic short stories need to have an interesting start that makes the reader want to look deeper into the book. In "The Body Snatcher" by Robert Louis Stevenson the narrator starts the story off as if he is retelling a past event. "Every night in the year, four of us sat in the small parlour of the George at Debenham - the undertaker, the landlord, Fettes and myself." This immediately sets the scene and tells us that the narrator is a main character in the story. The story quickly gets into action as the meeting between Fettes and Doctor Macfarlane turns very sour. "I always wondered if there were a god; I now know there is none. Be gone!" This fills the reader with excitement, and they want to read on so they can find out what happened in the past for the two characters to resent one another this much. Openings like this generate a large amount of suspense, in order to keep the reader interested, and thinking about what is going to happen next. Gothic stories often start by describing the weather; this usually includes references to darkness, cold, mist, fog and bad weather, e.g. "One dark winter night", this adds eeriness and sets it up as being a gothic story. "The Red Room" by H.G. Wells starts with the main character in a room full of old people, these people are there to add suspense to the story, and make

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