Imagine, a killer is on the loose in your own town and he is known for murdering young woman in the ravine that splits the town in half. You and your friends decide to go see a movie and you know that by the time that you get out it will be dark and you’ll have to walk down the ravine to your house all alone, which earlier that day your own friend was found dead in, what do you do? This is the decision Lavinia Nebbs is faced with in the book Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury. Many elements in the story create lots of suspense; three would be setting, foreshadowing and characterization.
The setting played a huge role in the success of the suspense in the story. Since the ravine where the bodies were found split the town, Lavinia was forced to cross it to get home since she decided to not stay with her friends and her safety was questioned. “The ravine was deep black and black black! And the world was gone behind, the world of safe people in bed, the locked doors, the town, the drugstore, the theater, the lights, everything was gone” (73). The words used to describe this dark, lonely ravine makes the reader feel as if they were right there standing with Lavinia seeing, hearing and feeling everything that’s going on, along with what’s in her head. It’s scary to think of being alone with not a soul in sight and knowing that there’s possibly a killer out there just waiting. “Lavinia Nebb walked alone down the midnight street, down the late summer silence. She saw houses with dark windows and far away heard a dog barking” (72). This is also a good example of the description of the setting because the reader can tell how alone she really was do to no one else in town wanting to go out at night with the Lonely One roaming around. It sounds almost like Lavinia is in a deserted town with just her and the ravine. The way Bradbury incorporated nature into the setting also gave it a little more of a spooky feel. “The crickets were listening. The night was...
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