Books Should Be Free is now
Loyal Books
Free Public Domain Audiobooks & eBook Downloads
Search by: Title, Author or Keyword

In the Midst of Life; Tales of Soldiers and Civilians

In the Midst of Life; Tales of Soldiers and Civilians by Ambrose Bierce
By: (1842-1914?)

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.

First Page:

THE COLLECTED WORKS OF AMBROSE BIERCE

VOLUME II

IN THE MIDST OF LIFE

TALES OF SOLDIERS AND CIVILIANS

Originally Published 1909

PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION

Denied existence by the chief publishing houses of the country, this book owes itself to Mr. E.L.G. Steele, merchant, of this city. In attesting Mr. Steele's faith in his judgment and his friend, it will serve its author's main and best ambition.

A.B.

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 4, 1891.

CONTENTS

A HORSEMAN IN THE SKY 15 AN OCCURRENCE AT OWL CREEK BRIDGE 27 CHICKAMAUGA 46 A SON OF THE GODS 58 ONE OF THE MISSING 71 KILLED AT RESACA 93 THE AFFAIR AT COULTER'S NOTCH 105 THE COUP DE GRÂCE ... Continue reading book >>


Book sections

Stream audiobook and download chapters




eBook Downloads
ePUB eBook
• iBooks for iPhone and iPad
• Nook
• Sony Reader
Kindle eBook
• Mobi file format for Kindle
Read eBook
• Load eBook in browser
Text File eBook
• Computers
• Windows
• Mac

Reviews (Rated: 5 Stars - 1 review)

Reviewer: - November 5, 2013
Subject: 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.


Popular Genres
More Genres
Languages
Paid Books