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The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Other Tales of Terror

3.92  ·  Rating Details  ·  68,274 Ratings  ·  579 Reviews
'He put the glass to his lips and drank at one gulp... his face became suddenly black and the features seemed to melt and alter'

Published as a 'shilling shocker', Robert Louis Stevenson's dark psychological fantasy gave birth to the idea of the split personality. The story of respectable Dr Jekyll's strange association with 'damnable young man' Edward Hyde; the hunt thro
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Paperback, Penguin Classics, 178 pages
Published February 27th 2003 by Penguin (first published 1886)
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Dustin

Introduction

Horace Walpole's The Castle of Otranto was originally published on Christmas Eve, 1764, and would serve as a primary origin in holiday publication. It's also considered one of the first gothic horror stories. Traditionally, the genre was characterized by settings in or "around ancient castles or monasteries deep in the gloomy forests, [and] involving proud Italian or Spanish nobles and the machinations of corrupt ecclesiastics."
This was a quickly growing literary trend. Some willing
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Mimi
Nov 23, 2014 Mimi rated it really liked it
I'd forgotten how high-strung, anxious, and creepy Victorian horror writing could be. Perhaps it's creepy because it's so uptight...

This is my third time through Jekyll and Hyde and first time through the other two stories; one is about genetic vampirism and the other a pair of serial killers (inspired by the Burke and Hare murders).

All three stories are quick reads, perfect for those times when you're alone at night waiting for a bus or train that's running late.

It's always made me wonder why
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D. Scott Meek
Jul 15, 2011 D. Scott Meek rated it really liked it
Classic story of a good man exploring his dark side. Terrific classic horror tale. Smart and well-written, and the age of the language use gives it perfect (authentic) flavor. Dr. Jekyll, as everyone knows, wishes to explore the nature of Man, and through a potion he concocts he is able to transform himself from a man who is knowledgeable and conscientious, able to consciously steer himself away from evil, into a man who personifies all the dark and deviant things that man holds locked away in h ...more
Laila A
TOO SHORT.
NEED MOAR.
SO GOOD.
NEED MOAR.
The other John
Jan 21, 2009 The other John rated it liked it
The introduction to this book has a great quote: "...Stevenson's story is more known about than actually known..." This was certainly true for me, and ever since enjoying The League of Extra-ordinary Gentlemen*, I had a desire to change that. I finally managed to snag a copy of the tale and read it. As you probably know, it's the tale of a Doctor Henry Jekyll, who concocts a potion that transforms him into Mr. Edward Hyde, an amoral man without restraint. Or perhaps you can say that the potion r ...more
Wanda
May 19, 2015 Wanda rated it really liked it
I wonder if this story had any influence on Carl Jung’s shadow theory—that we each have a shadow self to embody our negative traits, as Henry Jekyll quite literally does with his alter-ego, Edward Hyde.

Stevenson had surely studied Descartes’ philosophy. René Descartes (and his theory of mind/body duality) has an awful lot to answer for. Our whole Western world view tends towards dividing the world into two camps: us & them, man & nature, church & state, those for us & those agai
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Charlie Raffaele
Nov 17, 2014 Charlie Raffaele rated it liked it
I didn't enjoy Jekyll and Hyde as much as I might have, since I was aware of the majority of the themes and the plot, long before I started it. This meant that much of the plot is predictable and lacks the sense of mystery it might have had when it was first released. It is also very dated, lacking much of the context in which it was originally released. This took away much of the impact that the book might have had. With both of these difficulties and its short length, it feels rather empty , a ...more
Timothy Morrow
May 19, 2012 Timothy Morrow rated it it was ok
I went into this book knowing that it shouldn't be like any of the terrible adaptions on television, I was partly wrong. Indeed, the horrible Mr. Hyde was not the giant grotesque monster I saw on tv, nor was the story very close to anything they tried in Hollywood. The similarity between the book and televisions, Jekyll/Hyde, was that I was not amused with either. The concept and the idea of the story is amazing and beautiful, a man fighting between good and evil within himself, and the idea of ...more
Gary Hoggatt
Apr 17, 2012 Gary Hoggatt rated it really liked it
Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde is one of those books that, like many classics, everyone "knows" but no one's ever read. It's worth reading as it has influenced a great many stories since and has several worthwhile moments of its own, but only if you can put what you think you know about the story to the side. If you can put yourself in the place of the characters, the tale is mysterious and the fact that Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde are one and the same is a horrible revelation. The close of t ...more
Dark Slayer
Oct 19, 2013 Dark Slayer rated it it was amazing
‘Good’ and ‘evil’ are chiefly found in works whose main goal is about the inner struggle and from which the reader may delineate the conflict between the two that inevitably exist in the psychological side of the same person. This Gothic device is prominently used in Robert Louis Stevenson’s Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde; both Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde symbolize the good (the former) and evil (the latter) which permanently live within every human being. This story, hence, shows the strug ...more
Brittany
Apr 13, 2011 Brittany rated it liked it
I really liked the concept of the book. The split between good and evil in everyone, and how Jekyll devolved into basically pure evil in the end. I almost pitied him as he realized he would/could no longer exist, even though he didn't feel too remorseful about the things he did (aside from the killing of Carew). Also, the idea that Hyde may not have been purely evil, trying to change himself back to Jekyll before realizing it was useless and killing himself. I'm not sure if he was just killed hi ...more
Rjurik Davidson
Mar 11, 2012 Rjurik Davidson rated it really liked it
Another tale rightfully seared into our collective consciousness, the experience of reading it can't be anything like that of its first, unsuspecting, readers. But a nicely plotted little tale of mystery, its final section, when Jekyll makes his confession, is chilling. For his tale resonates with anyone who has felt divided within themselves, and who would claim never to have felt such internal conflicts? At once a tale of an addict, a Jungian shadow, and the everyman of Victorian England, this ...more
Nina
Feb 26, 2015 Nina rated it liked it
Well that was a randomly quick read of 70pgs, so the thing is - i would have found this to be a much better book if the whole freaking premise had not been spoilt beforehand. AARGH. why why why?

A tale of duplicity, Dr Jekyll symbolises our 'good' nature, Mr Hyde the 'evil' within us. They are one and the same person, intertwined in a story of the prevailing of evil.

I need a a break from this cover. Penguin? nOPE. ANYWAYS, A GOODISH READ FOR THE CLASSICS BUT HONESTLY NOT AMAZING.
Julie De Clerck
Oct 07, 2015 Julie De Clerck rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Matt Knippel
Oct 27, 2015 Matt Knippel rated it liked it
I will say that the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is downright brilliant and creepy and everything I want from horror of this era. it's well paced and engaging, and although the ending is fairly anticlimactic it's still a worthwhile read. but this book was more than just that one story and the other 2 stories included while not particularly bad weren't particularly great other. "The Body Snatchers" is kind of creepy but in a very familiar sort of way while "Olalla" is different w/out being pa ...more
R.M.F Brown
Jun 24, 2015 R.M.F Brown rated it really liked it
A metaphor for Edinburgh?

Nobody knew the dark side of Edinburgh better than Louis Stevenson. Beyond its leafy suburbs, and Georgian terraces, a dark canker is said to fester within. As a student, and somebody said to dabble in the dark side of the city (prostitution) Louis Stevenson would have been well versed in this study of human nature.

Equally, Edinburgh's dark, macabre past, its rich legacy of crime, ghost stories, and other supernatural phenomena, would have provided a fertile breeding gr
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Smiling
Nov 17, 2014 Smiling rated it liked it
Shelves: j-h
J&H is not exactly for modern readers in regarding most reader's interest's and preference of literature. I found sometimes during the book the it was confusing, as the author sometimes made it unclear what is happening. I found the plot interesting but the words describing it not detailed enough or clearly for me. As for other readers I don't know. Definitely a confusing book for people who are not into reading.

I also found there was one too many foreshadowing in the book, which was kind
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Yuria Takidera
Nov 03, 2014 Yuria Takidera rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Traci
Jan 18, 2011 Traci rated it really liked it
This year is beginning much like last year; I've promised myself to read some of the classics that I've somehow missed, depsite being a total book nut and a bona fide English Lit major. Yep, I have the B.A. from Indiana University to prove it! Anyway, I only made it through a few titles last year, then my summer sort of took over my life (more on that later), and I was lucky to read much at all.

I'm going back to the plan of last January, and thus, a review of the tormented doctor. There's not m
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John
Jul 03, 2012 John rated it really liked it
A thoroughly worthwhile and enjoyable book. It wasn't particularly scary (modern, visual, visceral horror media is much better at scaring), it wasn't particularly surprising (as unless you live in an internetless, telivisionless cave somewhere on Charon you've undoubtedly seen or read some form of the Jekyll-Hyde story) but it was certainly good.

What makes this story particularly good as a horror novel though is that the fear doesn't come from external factors. I mean sure there's a gruesome mur
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Davis
Apr 09, 2012 Davis rated it it was amazing
"All human beings, as we meet them, are commingled out of good and evil." A classic for a reason, still providing insight into humanity through its Victorian lens. Much different than I was initially expecting; the story is built around Mr. Utterson and the mystery of who Mr. Hyde is. Lots of excellent Victorian sensibilities that are deconstructing and examined honestly through Jekyll's transformation, and what that means about all people in general. The destructive sides of isolation, duality ...more
Kasey Jane
I decided to finally read this because of Stephen King. In his introduction to a collection where Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde was bound with Dracula and Frankenstein, King described the three stories as laying the foundation for all Western horror: self-made, man-made, and back-from-the-dead monsters. Wolfman, vampire, and other.

Although I was familiar with the story, I was not consciously aware that it was written by Robert Louis Stevenson until last night. I think of Stevenson as an adventure writ
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Beth
Sep 12, 2011 Beth rated it did not like it
God, what a horrible, insufferable slog of a book. (This review refers solely to The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, not the other "tales of terror.")

My editions (GR doesn't list it) is 88 pages long. 88 pages has never felt longer or nastier or...yes, the crtiicism of the uneducated and impatient and blah blah blah, so BORING. It took me six days to read. For an 88 page book!

I'll admit it: I'm judging Jekyll and Hyde solely on the book I expected to get, rather than the book I got. Yes
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Victoria
Jun 21, 2015 Victoria rated it really liked it
This was a very spooky book! I am very pleased that we are studying this book for our English language exam as it was extremely fascinating and creative, though quite a challenging read for some of my classmates. I cannot find much to fault the plot, it was terrifically dark and all the characters react with each other brilliantly. The only thing I could say is to include more woman characters and stop spoilers, which ruined my experience of reading this slightly.
Laura
Nov 13, 2014 Laura rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle, 1001, 2012, horror, classics
A very thought provoking story. If we could distill the evil parts of our nature and separate it from the rest of ourselves, would the remains be truly good? It did not work that way for Jekyll. Hyde was pure evil, yet Jekyll remained a composite of both good and evil. Thus in the end, Hyde won.

I suppose I did not like how Hyde was referred to as looking deformed, however I suppose that since he was not equal to half of a complete Jekyll, perhaps that makes sense. And then perhaps when Jekyll w
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Stephanie
Sep 20, 2011 Stephanie rated it it was amazing
Robert Louis Stevenson does an excellent job in this tale of a man seeking to better himself and society. The way the author examined the psycology of this piece and the amount of details added really intrigued me. I felt that I could relate to the characters in the story and felt the suspense as the reader was slowly becoming aware of just what was going on throughout the story. This story had a very heightened climax at the end in the laboratory where the reader gets to really see the full hap ...more
Cathy Neumann
Jan 17, 2016 Cathy Neumann rated it it was amazing
I ALMOST HAVE FINISHED THIS IN ONE NIGHT----COULD NOT FALL ASLEEP AND STARTED READING IT ---COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN---THE REFERENCES THAT ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON MAKES , ANCIENT RIVALRIES, ETC.ETC.---HAVE PROVIDED MANY EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES!---LOVING EVERY MINUTE!
Bonni
Mar 06, 2016 Bonni rated it it was amazing
This story was everything everyone made it out to be. no misconceptions, no fiddling around. It was short and straight to the point and there wasn't really a point where there was nothing happening.
A really fun and quick read (although it took me a while thanks to uni).
Mohamed Almokhllati
Oct 05, 2014 Mohamed Almokhllati rated it it was amazing
A duality of good and evil. A split personality that is torn between social acknowledgement and dark urges. When the dark side took control, it heralded the end of the human entity and the born of a mutant.
Mark
Apr 11, 2016 Mark rated it really liked it
The edition I'm reviewing includes The Body Snatcher, which to be blunt, I did not care for, and Olalla, which I will get to in a moment. I don't agree and take personal offense to anyone that does not care for the narrative of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, as I had an abridged version that I adored as a child and now reading through the full version will refuse to admit that maybe it plods a little slower with little reward, but nonetheless appreciate being able to enjoy the whole story.

Olalla is a
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Robert Louis (Balfour) Stevenson was a Scottish novelist, poet, and travel writer, and a leading representative of English literature. He was greatly admired by many authors, including Jorge Luis Borges, Ernest Hemingway, Rudyard Kipling and Vladimir Nabokov.

Most modernist writers dismissed him, however, because he was popular and did not write within their narrow definition of literature. It is o
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More about Robert Louis Stevenson...

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“He is not easy to describe. There is something wrong with his appearance; something displeasing, something downright detestable. I never saw a man I so disliked, and yet I scarce know why. He must be deformed somewhere; he gives a strong feeling of deformity, although I couldn’t specify the point. He’s an extraordinary-looking man, and yet I really can name nothing out of the way. No sir; I can make no hand of it; I can’t describe him. And it’s not want of memory; for I declare I can see him this moment.” 15 likes
“Ethics are my veiled mistress; I love them, but know not what they are.” 4 likes
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