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Man From The South Essay

4397 words - 18 pages

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PENGUIN READERS Teacher Support Programme

Man from the South and Other Stories
Roald Dahl
the bet. The boy’s hand is tied to the desk with his little finger sticking out and the man holds a chopping knife at the ready. The boy makes his lighter light successfully eight times when the door suddenly opens and a woman rushes in yelling in Spanish. She says that she should not have left him alone and that he has already cut off fortyseven fingers in the place where they come from. She had managed to win everything from him, but it had taken her a long time. The last thing the narrator sees as he leaves the room is the woman’s hand … with only one finger and one ...view middle of the document...

His nurse tells him he is in Brighton on the English seashore. Strange things keep happening, though, like the time he recognizes the sound of German planes through the window when there shouldn’t have been any nearby. The nurse also mentions that the hospital water is very hard, when Williamson knows that the water in Brighton is famous for being soft. Suspicious and frightened, he later drags himself to the window and sees a wooden sign, ‘GARDE AU CHIEN’ (French for ‘Beware of the dog’). He now knows that he is in Vichy France, and that the nice English caregivers are actually Germans in disguise. When they send in a fake RAF commander to convince him to divulge his squadron’s location, he stares him straight in the eye and says nothing more than his name, rank and number, thus showing them that he has understood that he is in enemy territory.

The Landlady
A young man named Billy Weaver arrives in Bath for a business trip, and looks for a place to stay. He goes to a deserted guesthouse and a middle-aged landlady appears. She treats him generously, giving him a floor of his own to stay on, and charging him much less than he expected. In the logbook Billy sees that only two other guests have stayed there. Billy’s suspicions grow when the landlady makes a comment about one of the two guests using the past tense, to which Billy comments that he must have only left recently. The landlady replies that he never left, and nor had the other. Billy then notices that the dog by the fireplace and the parrot he had noticed earlier weren’t alive but were stuffed. The landlady says that she did it herself. She then tells Billy that she stuffs all her little pets
Man from the South and Other Stories - Teacher’s notes of 5

Man from the South
The narrator is lounging by a pool at a hotel when he meets a strange little South American man in a white suit. They are joined by an American boy and an English girl, and the boy offers them all a cigarette. When he boasts that his lighter always lights, even in strong winds, the old man asks if he’s willing to bet on it. The boy is surprised but agrees to bet a dollar. The old man laughs and offers to up the stakes: If the boy can light his lighter ten times in a row, he will give him a brand new Cadillac. If the boy loses, the man will cut off the little finger of his left hand. After some deliberation, the boy agrees to the bet. They all go up to the old man’s room where he prepares for
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Teacher’s notes


PENGUIN READERS Teacher Support Programme

Man from the South and Other Stories
herself when they pass away, and offers Billy more tea. The landlady seems kind at first, but it turns out she takes in young men, drugs them, then kills and stuffs them for her collection.

An African Story
A pilot writes down a story he heard before he died. An old African man lives in his small shack with his dog, some chickens, a cow, and another man named Judson...

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