GCSE english coursework: A comparison of three short stories from the victorian era. This essay compares the way the three stories use settings to add to the story's atmosphere.

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For this piece of coursework, I will be comparing the way that three short stories written before 1914 use setting and atmosphere to add to the story. The three stories are:-

·The Red Room by H.G. Wells (1896)

·The adventure of the Engineer's thumb by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1892)

·The signalman by Charles Dickens (1866)

I will be analysing all three stories individually, and doing comparisons between them to show what I have found out about the techniques and styles used in each of the stories.

These three stories all use suspense very well to build up the atmosphere in the story and keep you reading. The Red Room uses descriptive and ghostly terms throughout to give the reader a mental picture of the setting, and make them want to find out more about the mystery of the Red Room. The way the ghostly and frightening atmosphere is built up gradually over time also adds to the suspense in this story.

The ending leaves the reader guessing as to what the mystery is in the Red Room, as the man in the story never finds out. Again, this leaves the reader in suspense even after they have finished the story.

The adventure of the Engineer's thumb works differently. It uses a gradually unravelling plot to keep the reader gripped and make them want to keep reading. There are also twists at key points in the story to grab the reader's attention; events such as the discovery of what the hydraulic press in the house is really used for and the house owners' sudden attempts to murder the engineer. The ending of the story solves some of the mystery, but leaves other parts of it wide openfor the readers to guess at. Although the 'hydraulic house' is found and...