Serrusalmus Essay

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If you were a fish enthusiast you would probably know that this story is about some sort of evil piranha, just by looking at the title. Because then you would know that the word Serrusalmus (spelled Serrasalmus according to Wikipedia) is the name of a genus which consists of several species of piranhas. But as an ordinary reader you do not know anything about the cruel piranha until the very last part of the story, and that I think is very clever of the author. The short story Serrusalmus is about a woman named Marjorie who lives on the nineteenth floor, far away from the people down below. She suffers from agoraphobia and has also developed a dread of people. Something that soothes her is her fish, which she has in several big and bright tanks in her apartment. A guy named Mick is sent out from his school every Friday to visit her, as a part of the Community Scheme. But Mick is not very nice to her, so one day, as a revenge of when he threw one of her fish out of the window, she drugs him with a glass of whisky with a couple of her tablets from the doctor in it. He pass out and then she puts his hand down to her piranha, which then eats his hand. The main part of the story takes place in Marjorie’s apartment, we only hear a little bit from her past when she was in the zoo with her mother looking at ants. So we get the impression that the main character, Marjorie, is very isolated. It makes her agoraphobia and her dread of people seem more penetrating. Her fish calms her, but then we are not getting more information about her other than we can guess that she is about 40-50 years old. It is difficult to say if Mick is a sort of main character or a subsidiary character, because he plays a big part in the plot, but you first hear a bit about him in the middle of the story and the narrator only know what happens inside Marjorie’s mind and not in Mick’s. Mick

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