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Referat - Roald Dahl: The Landlady

Dieses Referat wurde vom Mitglied Jette86 veröffenlicht. ist für die Inhalte der Veröffentlichungen der Mitglieder nicht verantwortlich.

Roald Dahl: „The Landlady“
„The Landlady” is a short story about a young man, Billy, who arrives in a foreign town because he is moving to a new post. While looking for a place to stay he discovers a little notice in a window, where he reads the words: “Bed and Breakfast”.
Then a very odd thing happens, he is so attracted by that notice that he goes to the house and presses the bell without really wanting it.
The Landlady who opens the door at once and who is a very friendly and lovely person, the house that seems to be very comfortable and the small price convince Billy to stay. The Landlady whose name isn’t mentioned in the whole text is very glad to see him. Everything is perfect and Billy counts himself very lucky but after a while he notices some queer things in the Landlady’s behaviour. For example she seems to be waiting for him for a very long time because there were only two other guests within the last two years. The names of the only two guests the Landlady ever had seem to be familiar to Billy but he doesn’t know why. Then the old lady tells him that they aren’t gone and that they are still living on the third floor what surprise him a bit. But he isn’t really distrustful because he thinks that she is just an old harmless lady that lost a son in war or something like that.
But while drinking a cup of tea that has an odd taste he remembers that he has read of these two boys in the headlines in the newspaper because they suddenly disappeared and weren’t seen anymore. But the Landlady tries to divert him with a conversation about the tea.
Then Billy realizes that the dog and the parrot in the living room aren’t alive because they are only stuffed. The Landlady has made it by herself and is very proud of it. She tells him that she stuffs all her little pets when they are dead.
In the end Billy wants getting sure that there wasn’t any other guest for except the two boys in the last two or three years and the Landlady answers him with a smile that he is the only one.
The narrator of the story is the author, Roald Dahl.
The story is told in an auctorial point of view with an unlimited perspective. But the omniscient author does not tell us everything he knows.
The mode of presentation that is made us of is a mixture of showing perspective and panoramic presentation because there are many dialogs but also many telling passages in which we get to know Billy’s thoughts.
There are two main characters in the story, Billy and the Landlady. Both of them are flat characters because they don’t change in the course of the action. Only for Billy the Landlady changes a bit because at first she is only a harmless old lady for him and later he doubts about it because she behaves in such an odd way.
Billy is a young, handsome man who starts to work in a new town and who is looking for a place to stay. He is perhaps a little bit naive but who thinks of any bad when he gets to know a friendly, sweet, old Landlady? The Landlady reminds him of a mother of a school friend and he trusts her immediately.
The Landlady seems to be a friendly, gentle old lady with a warm smile. But she also is a little bit strange but Billy considers her for a harmless woman with a kind of generous soul who is a bit muddled (confused).
Direct and indirect characterization is used because the author describes Billy and the Landlady but he also tells us Billy’s thoughts that describe the Landlady.
We don’t get to know the end of the story but we can easily imagine a grisly end because the author gives us several hints.
It seems to be a kind of magic that attracts Billy to ring the bell so that we get the impression of a fairytale. It reminds us a bit of “Hänsel und Gretel” who are as attracted by the house of gingerbreads as Billy is by the notice “Bed and Breakfast”. So does the Landlady have magical powers, is she even a witch?
The story wants to tell us that things aren’t always like they seem to be and that life is full of surprises and so we have to be careful in everything we do. Life isn’t always that easy and logical.
“The Landlady” is a story or Roald Dahl’s set of stories “Kiss Kiss” and it is a very typical for him, because he is noted for his tales (stories) of grotesque horror and hard humour. Perhaps do you know “Matilda” or “the “Witches” that are stories making him very famous.

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