‘The Landlady' is a short story by Roald Dahl. It was first published in ‘The New Yorker' magazine in 1959, and has since appeared in many anthologies of Dahl's stories, the first of which was ‘Kiss,Kiss' (published by Michael Joseph).
Billy Weaver, a young man visiting the City of Bath for the first time, is looking for accommodation. He is inexplicably drawn to a house where the landladyseems to be expecting him. The house and the landlady seem friendly and welcoming, and he looks forward to staying there. Signing the guest book, two names disturb him. Where has he heard them before?Why aren't there any other guests? What actually happens is left very much up to the reader, but Roald Dahl, the master of this kind of story, gives us all the clues we need to concoct a grisly ending.The themes drawn from this story include poisoning, embalming and taxidermy as well as a look at witches.
The story focuses on a 17-year old boy named Billy Weaver who has just stepped into theworld of work. Arriving in Bath for a business trip, he looks for a place to stay, notices a bed and breakfast sign and "his eye was caught in the most peculiar manner by the small notice (...) forcinghim to stay where he was and not to walk away from that house". He presses the bell and before he can lift his finger from the bell-button the door opens and the middle-aged landlady appears. Shetreats him generously, giving him a floor of his own to stay on, and charging him much less than he expected. However, she also gives off a creepy feeling (foreshadowing), which although apparently Billydoes not catch, appears quite evident to the reader. In the logbook he sees that only two other guests have stayed there, one older, the other younger, and both having arrived earlier than 2 yearsprior. Billy finds the names familiar from the newspaper, and on further reflection considers that they "were both famous for the same thing". Suspicion continues to generate in the reader when the...
Lire le document complet
Veuillez vous inscrire pour avoir accès au document.