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"This Master Hyde, if he were studied,' thought he, 'must have secrets of his own; black secrets, by the look of him; secrets compared to which poor Jekyll's worst would be like sunshine.'" —The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
When Edward Hyde traples an innocent girl, two bystanders catch the fellow and force him to pay reparations to the girl's family. A respected lawyer, Utterson, hears this story and begins to unravel the seemingly manic behavior of his best friend, Dr. Henry Jekyll, and his connection with Hyde. Utterson probes into both Jekyll and his unlikely protégé, increasingly unnerved at each new revelation. In a forerunner of psychological dramas to come, Robert Louis stevenson uses Hyde to show that we are both repulsed and attracted to the darker side of life, particularly when we can experience it in anonymity.
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Gr 7 Up
This simplified retelling of the classic novella is clearly meant for students. There are quotes from the original throughout, but the majority of the text consists of paraphrased summaries of Stevenson's story. Vocabulary words and potentially confusing plot points are footnoted and explained. Sometimes this addition is well executed, but there are several instances in which words that are fairly self-explanatory are defined anyway, giving the book an overly educational feel. The story itself fills just 33 pages of a 48-page book. The rest of the space is filled with biographical information on Stevenson, a science/medicine/crime time line from 1765 to 1850, and a history of performances based on the novel. Gelev's artwork is skilled and realistic, and he does wonderful things with glowing lights from candles and lanterns. Unfortunately the art does not get a chance to shine because the layout isolates each (too-small) image from the others on the page. The only place where readers can really appreciate Gelev's talents is on the front cover, which shows Jekyll mixing the potion, drinking it, and turning into Hyde. Which, if you think about it, will spoil the biggest surprise in the story for anyone unfamiliar with it. This is a serviceable book for larger collections where classics in graphic novel form are needed.-Andrea Lipinski, New York Public Library
Story of the Door
MR. UTTERSON the lawyer was a man of a rugged countenance that was never lighted by a smile; cold, scanty and embarrassed in discourse; backward in sentiment; lean, long, dusty, dreary and yet somehow lovable. At friendly meetings, and when the wine was to his taste, something eminently human beaconed from his eye; something indeed which never found its way into his talk, but which spoke not only in these silent symbols of the after-dinner face, but more often and loudly in the acts of his life. He was austere with himself; drank gin when he was alone, to mortify a taste for vintages; and though he enjoyed the theater, had not crossed the doors of one for twenty years. But he had an approved tolerance for others; sometimes wondering, almost with envy, at the high pressure of spirits involved in their misdeeds; and in any extremity inclined to help rather than to reprove. "I incline to Cain's heresy," he used to say quaintly: "I let my brother go to the devil in his own way." In this character, it was frequently his fortune to be the last reputable acquaintance and the last good influence in the lives of downgoing men. And to such as these, so long as they came about his chambers, he never marked a shade of change in his demeanour.
No doubt the feat was easy to Mr. Utterson; for he was undemonstrative at the best, and even his friendship seemed to be founded in a similar catholicity of good-nature. It is the mark of a modest man to accept his friendly circle ready-made from the hands of opportunity; and that was the lawyer's way. His friends were those of his own blood or those whom he had known the longest; his affections, like ivy, were the growth of time, they implied no aptness in the object. Hence, no doubt, the bond that united him to Mr. Richard Enfield, his distant kinsman, the well-known man about town. It was a nut to crack for many, what these two could see in each other, or what subject they could find in common. It was reported by those who encountered them in their Sunday walks, that they said nothing, looked singularly dull, and would hail with obvious relief the appearance of a friend. For all that, the two men put the greatest store by these excursions, counted them the chief jewel of each week, and not only set aside occasions of pleasure, but even resisted the calls of business, that they might enjoy them uninterrupted.
It chanced on one of these rambles that their way led them down a by-street in a busy quarter of London. The street was small and what is called quiet, but it drove a thriving trade on the weekdays. The inhabitants were all doing well, it seemed, and all emulously hoping to do better still, and laying out the surplus of their grains in coquetry; so that the shop fronts stood along that thoroughfare with an air of invitation, like rows of smiling saleswomen. Even on Sunday, when it veiled its more florid charms and lay comparatively empty of passage, the street shone out in contrast to its dingy neighbourhood, like a fire in a forest; and with its freshly painted shutters, well-polished brasses, and general cleanliness and gaiety of note, instantly caught and pleased the eye of the passenger.
Two doors from one corner, on the left hand going east, the line was broken by the entry of a court; and just at that point, a certain sinister block of building thrust forward its gable on the street. It was two storeys high; showed no window, nothing but a door on the lower storey and a blind forehead of discoloured wall on the upper; and bore in every feature, the marks of prolonged and sordid negligence. The door, which was equipped with neither bell nor knocker, was blistered and distained. Tramps slouched into the recess and struck matches on the panels; children kept shop upon the steps; the schoolboy had tried his knife on the mouldings; and for close on a generation, no one had appeared to drive away these random visitors or to repair their ravages.
Mr. Enfield and the lawyer were on the other side of the by-street; but when they came abreast of the entry, the former lifted up his cane and pointed.
"Did you ever remark that door?" he asked; and when his companion had replied in the affirmative, "It is connected in my mind," added he, "with a very odd story."
"Indeed?" said Mr. Utterson, with a slight change of voice, "and what was that?"
"Well, it was this way," returned Mr. Enfield: "I was coming home from some place at the end of the world, about three o'clock of a black winter morning, and my way lay through a part of town where there was literally nothing to be seen but lamps. Street after street, and all the folks asleep—street after street, all lighted up as if for a procession and all as empty as a church—till at last I got into that state of mind when a man listens and listens and begins to long for the sight of a policeman. All at once, I saw two figures: one a little man who was stumping along eastward at a good walk, and the other a girl of maybe eight or ten who was running as hard as she was able down a cross street. Well, sir, the two ran into one another naturally enough at the corner; and then came the horrible part of the thing; for the man trampled calmly over the child's body and left her screaming on the ground. It sounds nothing to hear, but it was hellish to see. It wasn't like a man; it was like some damned Juggernaut. I gave a view halloa, took to my heels, collared my gentleman, and brought him back to where there was already quite a group about the screaming child. He was perfectly cool and made no resistance, but gave me one look, so ugly that it brought out the sweat on me like running. The people who had turned out were the girl's own family; and pretty soon, the doctor, for whom she had been sent, put in his appearance. Well, the child was not much the worse, more frightened, according to the Sawbones; and there you might have supposed would be an end to it. But there was one curious circumstance. I had taken a loathing to my gentleman at first sight. So had the child's family, which was only natural. But the doctor's case was what struck me. He was the usual cut and dry apothecary, of no particular age and colour, with a strong Edinburgh accent, and about as emotional as a bagpipe. Well, sir, he was like the rest of us; every time he looked at my prisoner, I saw that Sawbones turn sick and white with desire to kill him. I knew what was in his mind, just as he knew what was in mine; and killing being out of the question, we did the next best. We told the man we could and would make such a scandal out of this, as should make his name stink from one end of London to the other. If he had any friends or any credit, we undertook that he should lose them. And all the time, as we were pitching it in red hot, we were keeping the women off him as best we could, for they were as wild as harpies. I never saw a circle of such hateful faces; and there was the man in the middle, with a kind of black, sneering coolness—frightened too, I could see that—but carrying it off, sir, really like Satan. 'If you choose to make capital out of this accident,' said he, 'I am naturally helpless. No gentleman but wishes to avoid a scene,' says he. 'Name your figure.' Well, we screwed him up to a hundred pounds for the child's family; he would have clearly liked to stick out; but there was something about the lot of us that meant mischief, and at last he struck. The next thing was to get the money; and where do you think he carried us but to that place with the door?—whipped out a key, went in, and presently came back with the matter of ten pounds in gold and a cheque for the balance on Coutts's, drawn payable to bearer and signed with a name that I can't mention, though it's one of the points of my story, but it was a name at least very well known and often printed. The figure was stiff; but the signature was good for more than that, if it was only genuine. I took the liberty of pointing out to my gentleman that the whole business looked apocryphal, and that a man does not, in real life, walk into a cellar door at four in the morning and come out with another man's cheque for close upon a hundred pounds. But he was quite easy and sneering. 'Set your mind at rest,' says he, 'I will stay with you till the banks open and cash the cheque myself.' So we all set off, the doctor, and the child's father, and our friend and myself, and passed the rest of the night in my chambers; and next day, when we had breakfasted, went in a body to the bank. I gave in the cheque myself, and said I had every reason to believe it was a forgery. Not a bit of it. The cheque was genuine."
"Tut-tut," said Mr. Utterson.
"I see you feel as I do," said Mr. Enfield. "Yes, it's a bad story. For my man was a fellow that nobody could have to do with, a really damnable man; and the person that drew the cheque is the very pink of the proprieties, celebrated too, and (what makes it worse) one of your fellows who do what they call good. Black mail, I suppose; an honest man paying through the nose for some of the capers of his youth. Black Mail House is what I call the place with the door, in consequence. Though even that, you know, is far from explaining all," he added, and with the words fell into a vein of musing.
From this he was recalled by Mr. Utterson asking rather suddenly: "And you don't know if the drawer of the cheque lives there?"
"A likely place, isn't it?" returned Mr. Enfield. "But I happen to have noticed his address; he lives in some square or other."
"And you never asked about the—place with the door?" said Mr. Utterson.
"No, sir: I had a delicacy," was the reply. "I feel very strongly about putting questions; it partakes too much of the style of the day of judgment. You start a question, and it's like starting a stone. You sit quietly on the top of a hill; and away the stone goes, starting others; and presently some bland old bird (the last you would have thought of) is knocked on the head in his own back garden and the family have to change their name. No sir, I make it a rule of mine: the more it looks like Queer Street, the less I ask."
"A very good rule, too," said the lawyer.
"But I have studied the place for myself," continued Mr. Enfield. "It seems scarcely a house. There is no other door, and nobody goes in or out of that one but, once in a great while, the gentleman of my adventure. There are three windows looking on the court on the first floor; none below; the windows are always shut but they're clean. And then there is a chimney which is generally smoking; so somebody must live there. And yet it's not so sure; for the buildings are so packed together about the court, that it's hard to say where one ends and another begins."
The pair walked on again for a while in silence; and then "Enfield," said Mr. Utterson, "that's a good rule of yours."
"Yes, I think it is," returned Enfield.
"But for all that," continued the lawyer, "there's one point I want to ask: I want to ask the name of that man who walked over the child."
"Well," said Mr. Enfield, "I can't see what harm it would do. It was a man of the name of Hyde."
"Hm," said Mr. Utterson. "What sort of a man is he to see?"
"He is not easy to describe. There is something wrong with his appearance; something displeasing, something downright detestable. I never saw a man I so disliked, and yet I scarce know why. He must be deformed somewhere; he gives a strong feeling of deformity, although I couldn't specify the point. He's an extraordinary-looking man, and yet I really can name nothing out of the way. No, sir; I can make no hand of it; I can't describe him. And it's not want of memory; for I declare I can see him this moment."
Mr. Utterson again walked some way in silence and obviously under a weight of consideration. "You are sure he used a key?" he inquired at last.
"My dear sir . . ." began Enfield, surprised out of himself.
"Yes, I know," said Utterson; "I know it must seem strange. The fact is, if I do not ask you the name of the other party, it is because I know it already. You see, Richard, your tale has gone home. If you have been inexact in any point, you had better correct it."
"I think you might have warned me," returned the other with a touch of sullenness. "But I have been pedantically exact, as you call it. The fellow had a key; and what's more, he has it still. I saw him use it, not a week ago."
Mr. Utterson sighed deeply but said never a word; and the young man presently resumed. "Here is another lesson to say nothing," said he. "I am ashamed of my long tongue. Let us make a bargain never to refer to this again."
"With all my heart," said the lawyer. "I shake hands on that, Richard."
Searching for Mr.Hyde
THAT EVENING Mr. Utterson came home to his bachelor house in sombre spirits and sat down to dinner without relish. It was his custom of a Sunday, when this meal was over, to sit close by the fire, a volume of some dry divinity on his reading desk, until the clock of the neighbouring church rang out the hour of twelve, when he would go soberly and gratefully to bed. On this night, however, as soon as the cloth was taken away, he took up a candle and went into his business room. There he opened his safe, took from the most private part of it a document endorsed on the envelope as Dr. Jekyll's Will, and sat down with a clouded brow to study its contents. The will was holograph, for Mr. Utterson, though he took charge of it now that it was made, had refused to lend the least assistance in the making of it; it provided not only that, in case of the decease of Henry Jekyll, M.D., D.C.L., L.L.D., F.R.S., etc., all his possessions were to pass into the hands of his "friend and benefactor Edward Hyde," but that in case of Dr. Jekyll's "disappearance or unexplained absence for any period exceeding three calendar months," the said Edward Hyde should step into the said Henry Jekyll's shoes without further delay and free from any burthen or obligation, beyond the payment of a few small sums to the members of the doctor's household. This document had long been the lawyer's eyesore. It offended him both as a lawyer and as a lover of the sane and customary sides of life, to whom the fanciful was the immodest. And hitherto it was his ignorance of Mr. Hyde that had swelled his indignation; now, by a sudden turn, it was his knowledge. It was already bad enough when the name was but a name of which he could learn no more. It was worse when it began to be clothed upon with destestable attributes; and out of the shifting, insubstantial mists that had so long baffled his eye, there leaped up the sudden, definite presentment of a fiend.
|Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde||1|
Posted January 13, 2011
I picked up this book because it was short and seemed like a simple enough read. Also, I had never heard anything of this book except for the title, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde so I decided to give it a try. As I read the first page, the first thing I noticed was the in depth description of the main character was amazing. The way that Robert Louis Stevenson gets the message of his writing across is incredible. The word choice and grammar that he uses prints a perfect image in your head. Because you can picture this story so well, I definitely helps grab the reader's attention.
One flawless attribute of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is the plot of the story that doesn't actually come into full focus until the end of the story. One of the main things that is so great about this classic is the mystery and complicatedness of the many events that happen throughout the story that all contribute to the horror at the end. I very much enjoyed reading the end of the book when a certain something was revealed and it honestly caught me off guard. Overall, the idea of the storyline is very intriguing.
Another attribute of this story was the characters. Although Mr. Stevenson only includes characters that have pretty vital roles in the story, he describes them and their actions so well its fun to picture each and every individual in a very detailed way. I think that the many characteristics that he gives each character helps him or her perform their role in the story better such as Mr. Hyde appearance leads you to believe that he is a evil, wicked man.
To be honest, the book actually was a little slow at times and I felt my mind wandering occasionally. Especially at the beginning, this book almost has so much detail that that it seemed not needed. Compared to what I am used to reading, this book was different but still interesting. Just the thought of someone splitting the soul into good and evil and evolving into a human was quite the idea for a book that was written in the 60's. I think that one of the says that Mr. Stevenson keeps the readers intrigued and the suspense high is by switching from viewpoint to viewpoint. Another way is that he waits to resolve all the conflicts of the story until the very end. This value makes the story fun to read.
I think that I would recommend this book to someone who is looking for a short, semi-straightforward, book that is pretty full of suspenseful action (at least after the beginning). Even though the language is tough at times, I think that any age would enjoy a short story of a scientist that drinks a potion and turns into a murderous mad man (simplified of course). All in all, I think that the book is wonderfully written and really deserves to be a classic.
16 out of 17 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 4, 2012
This book was well written, interesting and unlike anything id ever read before so it made it worth it. However, it was sometimes hard for me to follow. Its a better read for older people, maybe 11th grade and up.
5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 28, 2012
Had to get this book for my son. It was part of an assignment he had for his High School English class. Very good book with twists and turns. A real classic for those who enjoy reading. Not everyone may enjoy the story due to when the time is set. Still for those who love reading and going to a different place and time, you will enjoy the read.
5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 6, 2012
Some of the post I read on here look like a 5th greader wrote them!If you are going to post something online make it look nice and not like you are texting a frend!
2 out of 10 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 24, 2012
I enjoyed the book and it was an easy, short, comfortable read. I'm not sure if RLS had any special intent when he wrote it, like illustrating that all of us have a very bad side but it was well done. What amused me about this book and countless others is the way medicine is represented as constantly making new and spectacular discovers (like Dr. Jekyll coming up with a formula that actually split his personality into it's good and bad sides). I'm 63 soon to be 64 and my experience of the progress of medicine is that it's extremely limited and extremely slow. I was recently tested for allergies and I was also tested for allergies when I was 9 (for those not so good at math that's 54 years ago) and they are still using the same methods. The War on cancer started over 50 years ago and to quote a physician acquaintance of mine "the cure rate is pathetic". Had asthma as a kid and know some children that have it now and the treatment methods are basically the same! In The book of Alcoholics Anonymous written in 1939 it makes the statement that "maybe one day medicine will make a normal drinker out of an alcoholic". That was written 73 years ago and thousands of people are still dying from alcoholism every year; no magic pill yet! A more cynical person might say there is a whole lot more money in treatment than in a cure. Anyway the book is good so read it.
2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 6, 2013
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Posted June 15, 2012
I have to read this book for a class next year (seventh grade) and I tjought I could get this version because it was free bur when I got to the first page there were soooo.many grammatical misstakes and publishing errors I could not get throught tje first chapter.
1 out of 7 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 19, 2012
I just started this book, and, trust me, there have been some times I wanted to DIE 'cause it was so boring. (This book is required, BTW.) But, once you get through death, you go to heaven. It actually turned out to be a really thought-out, suspenseful short story. Like I said, though, I just started it, so I have no idea what's in store.
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Posted March 3, 2014
I like this version but i wish i could find the really long version. I feel this is not as cool as the play i was in about jekll and hyde. I was the the lead. Mwhahahaha. Evil face.;)Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
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