The Monkeys Paw by W.W. Jacobs and The Third Wish by Joan Aiken: The Effects of Wishing For Something and its Consequences

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  • Topic: Wish
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  • Published : January 30, 2013
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rastCompare and Contrast Essay
Mary Whipple
Period 6
December 12

Wishes can be good, and wishes can be a huge disaster. The story of “The Monkeys Paw” by W.W. Jacobs and the story of “The Third Wish” by Joan Aiken tell us the effects of wishing for something and everything that comes afterwards. In the rising action of both stories they both have a lot in common. The main characters use their second wish to make their wife’s happy. The themes for both stories teach that wishes or other sorcerery should not be taken lightly.

In "The Monkeys Paw" and in "The Third Wish" the main characters are alike because they are both content with life until they loose a loved one. To identify, Mr. White looses his son, and Mr. Peters looses his wife. On the other hand, the main characters are different because Mr. White used his third wish and Mr. Peters did not. In other words Mr. White used his third wish to make his mutilated son that he wished back to life with his second wish for his wife’s sake, away. Mr. Peters was happy so he never used his third wish.

The setting in both stories was cold at he beginning. To exemplify in the beginning of "The Third Wish" it states, “The primroses were just beginning but the trees were still bare, and it was still cold; the birds had stopped singing an hour ago” (pg. 101). In "The Monkeys Paw" “The night was cold and wet” (pg. 85). Of course though there are some differences. In "The Monkeys Paw" the setting is mostly dreary and dark with rarely any parts where the sun shines, but in "The Third Wish" it has more lightly mooded and sunny settings. Specifically in "The Monkeys Paw" Mr. White and his wife visit a cemetery and weep for the lost, but in "The Third Wish" Mr. Peters is repetitively happy, living in a nice house in the countryside by a stream and a peaceful neighborhood.

The resolutions of these two stories have plenty in common, but there are details that give the difference. The stories are both alike...
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