The book is set in Victorian age London. It is the same time period the author grew up in. It was a very morally restrictive time period. It adds a lot to the story especially since Mr. Hyde isn't the most law abiding citizen. The author really knew the mind set of a Londoner at this time and it is apparent within his writing. It was a time without cars cluttering the street and he uses that element in his story. Utterson went on many afternoon walks throughout the story. He uses those times for us the reader to hear what had happened during that time gap. He uses the setting to weave an intriguing story.
Mood and Tone
With a book about duality and conflicting personalities, it is no surprise that it has a shift in tone. From the start it is a kind of neutral tone. It shifts to a mysterious mood. As explanations occur and Jekyll puts Utterson's mind at ease the story becomes a lighthearted tale. As Jekyll becomes recluse the story then becomes a grim tale. It deals with multiple personalities and dark themes such as suicide.
It is obvious that the theme is good vs evil. Through Jekyll's duality of good and evil there is an apparent struggle. As Jekyll grows older and weaker so does his goodness. Jekyll takes extreme measures to rid himself of his evil. In the end he must lose everything to truly be rid of both his good and evil.
There are two types of characters in this story good which would be every character except one and bad which be Mr. Hyde. Making Hyde the only true bad character added this extra since of uniqueness to the character. He was so different from everyone else and that made him easy to despise.
This was a book full of metaphors. Most of which were used to describe a character or their mood. For example in chapter two, "Hosts loved to detain the dry lawyer....." Utterson isn't literally dry it is just a way to describe his personality. In chapter six "He had his death warrant written legibly upon his face" was used to describe the Lanyon is very ill and it's apparent. These metaphors helped add depth to the characters.