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Similarities Between The Tell Tale Heart And The Landlady Essay

In the literature world, there are too many books to count. There are fiction, nonfiction, biography, autobiography, and everything in between. Within these categories, there a huge selection of even more categories, including fantasy, horror, and adventure; just to name a few. There are two though, that fall under the fictional and horror categories; The Tell-Tale Heart and The Landlady. The two stories have their own fair share of differences and similarity. So let’s take a closer look at these two fantastic stories. First let’s take a look at The Landlady.

The Landlady takes place in the 1960’s, probably around the U. K. The story begins with a young man named Billy. He had just gotten off of a train, and he needed to find a Bed and Breakfast to stay at for the night. He asks one of the employees at the train stop where he might find one, and the employee suggests the Bell and Dragon. Billy thanks the man of starts walking to the B&B, which was about one mile away. On his way, Billy seems drawn to a smaller house with a sign that states, “Bed and Breakfast” over and over again. Billy decided to check out the house, to which his surprise, someone answers the door immediately. The woman is around forty years old, and welcomes Billy with open arms.

At this point in the story, you seem to notice a creepy atmosphere radiating off of the owner of the B&B. It’s very subtle, mostly in the way she speaks, or her actions, this is where the foreshadowing tactic comes to play. A couple of things that are used for foreshadowing are the lady’s “pets”. In the common room of the Bed and Breakfast, there are two animals, a parrot in a cage and a dachshund lying by the fire. After a while Billy notices that the two animals are stuffed. Billy asks the owner about this and she reveals that she has an interest in taxidermy. Another time foreshadowing occurs is in the guest book.

While Billy is signing the guest book, he realizes there hadn’t been another guest here for three years. This alone shows nothing very creepy, maybe she just had some bad business for awhile, but then when Billy takes a closer look at the guest book, he realizes that he recognizes the previous guest who had stayed there, from where though, he doesn’t remember. It is slightly implied that Billy might remember this guest from a newspaper article, maybe a missing persons ad? The last form of foreshadowing is when Billy is offered tea from the lady. When he drinks is, he recalls that is has a slight, bitter almond taste.

One poison that is known to have this taste is cyanide. At the end of the story, there is a cliffhanger, so you do not figure out what happens to Billy, but you can sense that is isn’t good. The Tell-Tale Heart is another creepy story. The Tell-Tale Heart takes place in the 1900’s, and the location seems to be unknown. This story, however, has a different point of view, the butler. The butler is trying to convince the reader that he is not crazy, but in fact sane. There are no details about the butler’s physical traits, it doesn’t give them a name, or even a gender.

Anyways, the butler starts off explaining how he hates his master’s eye. So every night, the butler scares at his eye at around midnight, he does this for one week. Then on the eighth night, the butler scares the old man and he dies. After this, the butler chops up the old man, and puts his body parts under the floorboards. Later the police come, but don’t find anything. They stay for a drink, but after a couple minutes, the butler confesses. This is the main plot for The Tell-Tale Heart. This story too, ends on a slight cliffhanger. Though both of these stories have many similarities, there are also a handful of differences too.

For instance, the Tell-Tale Heart takes place further in the past than the Landlady. Another difference is the victim’s fate. In the Tell-Tale Heart, you really don’t get to see what happens to the butler. They could have been arrested, or they could have ran, but there is no specific answer. The same thing slightly happens in the Landlady, but there is a lot of foreshadowing that helps give a better idea of what happens to Billy. Also, in the Tell-Tale Heart, there is less detail, specifically in the character development. In the Landlady, there are plenty of details given about the characters.

The characters are given names, ages, … etc. , but in the Tell-Tale Heart, the most detailed character is probably the old man. The butler on the other hand, isn’t even given a gender, yet alone other physical characteristics. One of the last differences I saw was the complexity of the writing style. The Landlady is a lot easier to read. The point of view is clear from the beginning, and there is easier vocabulary. While in the Tell-Tale Heart, the point of view is unclear throughout the story, and there is harder vocabulary. The last contrast that was found is that the Landlady has more dialogue.

In my opinion, the Tell-Tale Heart is a better story than the Landlady. To support my opinion, I looked mostly at the main plot. The plot for the Tell-Tale Heart personally is my favorite, because it gives off a creepy vibe within the first paragraph. For the Landlady however, most people have to go back and reread the story to understand what could have happened to Billy after the story ended. I further liked how you don’t know who is telling the story in the Tell-Tale Heart, so that gives off a way creepier vibe. Also, I just believe that the Tell-Tale Heart has a better storyline.

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