I am going to explain within this essay how I think Mary Maloney’s character changes in the story Lamb to the Slaughter by Roald Dahl.
When the story opens Mary is a content, loving and devoted wife and is six months pregnant and happy to be so. “Now and again she would g lance up at the clock, but without anxiety, merely to please herself with the thought that each minute gone by made it nearer the time when he would come.” The statement “without anxiety” demonstrates her contentment. The statement “please herself” to “when he would come” demonstrates the love and devotion she has as she is eagerly awaiting the return of her husband from work. It states “The drop of the head as she bent over her sewing was curiously tranquil. Her skin - for this was her six month with child – had acquired a wonderful translucent quality”. The use of the word “tranquil” and “wonderful” portray she was thriving on her pregnancy and had no anxieties. It later states “For her, this was always a blissful time of day”. The use of “blissful” shows demonstrates the full extent of her contentment.
On the arrival of her husband home Mary Maloney begins to detect something is wrong with her husband and a nervous anxiousness starts to appear in her. It states “he did an unusual thing. He lifted his glass and drained it in one swallow”. This was setting the scene that this was not a normal evening and indicating “drained it” introduced negative connotations. The statements “she heard the ice cubes falling back against the bottom of the empty glass” and “she noticed the new drink was dark amber” and “she could see little oily swirls in the liquid because it was so strong” shows she was becoming fixated on the manner in which he was drinking the whisky. This fixation was used by the story teller in combination with her repeated attempts to be helpful and appease in statements such as “’I’ll get it!’ she cried, jumping up.” and “‘Darling, shall I get your slippers?’ ”...
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