An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge and Other Stories (Tantor Unabridged Classics) MP3 CD – Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Unabridged
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About the Author
Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce (1842-1914) was an American editorialist, journalist, short story writer, fabulist and satirist. Today, he is best known for his short story, "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" and his satirical lexicon, The Devil's Dictionary. The sardonic view of human nature that informed his work - along with his vehemence as a critic, with his motto "nothing matters" - earned him the nickname "Bitter Bierce." Despite his reputation as a searing critic, however, Bierce was known to encourage younger writers, including poet George Sterling and fiction writer W. C. Morrow. Bierce employed a distinctive style of writing, especially in his stories. This style often includes a cold open, dark imagery, vague references to time, limited descriptions, the theme of war, and impossible events. In 1913, Bierce traveled to Mexico to gain a firsthand perspective on that country's ongoing revolution. While traveling with rebel troops, the elderly writer disappeared without a trace. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Bierce himself was an interesting man-a journalist by trade who managed to obtain recognition latterly for his work and ended up 'disappearing' in New Mexico, I believe. A strange ending to a man who engineered many strange endings in his numerous short stories.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Curiously enough, I was led to this story by the TV show --- "Lost," one of the characters on there was reading it. Once I started reading, I was immediately drawn in by this author's storytelling power and ability to create powerful images using words. Some of the language he uses is rather high-toned and may go over the heads of some readers, but I think even if you can't completely understand it, there's quite enough that is understandable for general audiences to still work very well. (And hey --- why not crack that dictionary if you're not certain about some terms?)
The plot goes back to the Civil War and it's about a man who is caught and put to death by hanging at a bridge. As you read it, you can absolutely picture this scene in your head and understand what the main chaacter is feeling. This story has a surprising twist ending as well.
Now that I've read this, I think I may just seek out more by Ambrose Bierce. I like vivid storytelling and this certain fits the bill.
I first read this story years and years ago. It was one of the many short stories we had to read in a special advanced English course I took in high school. Like most kids of that age I felt I was being force fed a bunch of stuff I had absolutely no interest in and must admit that I fought it. Over the years I have forgotten most to many of the numerous stories we read during that year, which is sort of sad when you think about it, but I have to tell you that this offering from Ambrose Bierce was not one of those that I consciously or unconsciously shuffled either to the back of my mind or out of it completely. No, no - far, far from it! This one has stuck with me throughout the years and I was delighted when I found it as a free Kindle download.
A Confederate man; a planter in northern Alabama during the Civil War has been captured by Union Solders. He has been sentenced to death and the story begins on a railroad bridge as the man stands on a railroad bridge with a rope noose about his neck about to be hanged. The board he is standing upon is tilted and he begins to fall.
This entire short story takes place in the doomed mans mind as he falls to the end of the rope. The reader at this point does not realize this and we watch in sickening slow motion as the rope breaks, the planter hits the water, is shot at, makes a daring escape, struggles through the woods and finally finds himself going up the steps of his home to the loving arms of his wife...snap..white searing light!
As the story progresses in becomes more and more surreal and the reader starts getting hints that not all is as it seems. When you consider when this work was written and published; around 1891, this is a rather remarkable ploy. You know something strange is going to happen but it is not until the final line; the final word that your suspicions are confirmed. Now I have never been hung. I probably should have been on a few occasions, but so far I have been fortunate. I am not at all sure that that much would go through a persons mind during the last three for four seconds of his or her life but that is rather moot. Whether this would actually happen is beside the point. The great thing about this story is that the author had the ability to make it quite real.
This story deserves to be read closely. In truly great short stories what is not written is quite often just as important as what is written. All great short story writers have this ability and Bierce most certainly had it going when he wrote this one.
In many ways this is a haunting story; anyway it was to me. While it most certainly cannot be classified as a horror story I can most emphatically tell you that it horrified me when I first read it. It had the same effect as several of the stories Poe wrote; the impact on my mind was just as great.
The quality of the Kindle download is quite good on this one. It will take you 15 or 10 minutes to read and it is free. It is most certainly worth your time.
Thirty years after watching this film, I read the short story, called "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" by Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce. I still can't figure out why I had to watch this film so many times in school. It's supposedly a great work of literature, but it now seems like a piece of southern-culture indoctrination-propaganda as I look back on it and question it. But the story is eerie and morbid and not unlike some of my worst nightmares, so that's why I had to read it.
Written by David Allan Reeves
Author of "Running Away From Me"