In the Midst of Life; Tales of Soldiers and Civilians cover

In the Midst of Life; Tales of Soldiers and Civilians

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914?)

1. 01 The Suitable Surroundings
2. 02 A Tough Tussle
3. 03 An Inhabitant Of Carcosa
4. 04 The Middle Toe Of The Right Foot
5. 05 Haita The Shepherd
6. 06 A Horseman In The Sky
7. 07 An Occurrence At Owl Creek Bridge
8. 08 Chickamauga
9. 09 A Son Of The God; Study In The Present Tense
10. 10 One Of The Missing
11. 11 Killed At Resaca
12. 12 The Affair At Coulter's Notch
13. 13 The Coup De Grace
14. 14 Parker Adderson, Philosopher
15. 15 An Affair Of Outposts
16. 16 The Story Of A Conscience
17. 17 One Kind Of Officer
18. 18 One Officer, One Man
19. 19 George Thurston
20. 20 The Mocking-Bird
21. 21 The Man Out Of The Nose
22. 22 An Adventure At Brownville
23. 23 The Famous Gilson Bequest
24. 24 The Applicant
25. 25 A Watcher By The Dead
26. 26 The Man And The Snake
27. 27 A Holy Terror
28. 28 The Boarded Window
29. 29 A Lady From Redhorse
30. 30 The Eyes Of the Panther

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These stories detail the lives of soldiers and civilians during the American Civil War. This is the 1909 edition. The 1909 edition omits six stories from the original 1891 edition; these six stories are added to this recording (from an undated English edition). The 1891 edition is entitled In The Midst Of Life; Tales Of Soldiers And Civilians. The Wikipedia entry for the book uses the title Tales of Soldiers and Civilians. Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce (June 24, 1842 – after December 26, 1913) 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 embraces an abrupt beginning, dark imagery, vague references to time, limited descriptions, the theme of war, and impossible events. In 1913, Bierce traveled to Mexico to gain a first-hand perspective on that country's ongoing revolution. While traveling with rebel troops, the elderly writer disappeared without a trace. Since the book is a compilation of short stories, there is not an overarching plot. However, there are literary elements, or plot devices, that are shared throughout. Bierce's stories often begin mid-plot, with relevant details withheld until the end, where the dramatic resolution unfolds differently than expected, to a degree where most are considered twist endings. His characters were described by George Sterling as: "His heroes, or rather victims, are lonely men, passing to unpredictable dooms, and hearing, from inaccessible crypts of space, the voices of unseen malevolencies."... Bierce served as a union soldier during the Civil War and his experiences as a soldier served as an inspiration for his writing, particularly for the Soldiers section. In this way, Bierce's war treatments anticipate and parallel Ernest Hemingway's later arrival, whereas the civilian tales later influence horror writers.



- Stories oif the Civil War

Ambrose Bierce is one of my favorite authors of that period. He offers raw and apparently realistic tales of the war between the North and South. In doing so, he captures the pain and suffering experienced by soldiers and civilians alike.