The Horla Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Horla

THE HORLA (Le Horla) has been first published in 1887.

This eerie story describes the thoughts of a man convinced that an invisible creature is trying to take control of his mind. This creature would have come all the way from Brazil aboard a commercial boat and would have been attracted by the man's white house situated near the Seine river. A few days after the passage of the boat, our hero starts to feel unhappy without any good reasons at all and one morning, he notices that, while he was sleeping, someone has drunk the water on the night table. He leaves for Paris where his depressing thoughts soon disappear. When he comes back home, the nightmares reappear and the creature takes control of his body more and more often. Soon, he's unable to decide anymore to leave the region in order to escape from this invisible monster.
The review of this Book prepared by Daniel Staebler

Chapter Analysis of The Horla

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 10%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 20%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 60%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 10% Tone of book    -   scarey (primal ax-wielding fear) FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   science fiction story Horror story?    -   Yes Horror plotlets    -   the bodysnatchers are coming!

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Age:    -   40's-50's


Earth setting:    -   19th century Takes place on Earth?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment scientific jargon? (SF only)    -   some scientific explanation How much dialogue?    -   little dialog

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Guy de Maupassant Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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