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84 of 87 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete Table of Contents, December 26, 2011
By 
Roger Zeus (Richmond, VA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
Since Amazon doesn't give a complete listing of the contents, I thought I would. Hopefully somebody might find this of use:

IN THE MIDST OF LIFE (TALES OF SOLDIERS AND CIVILIANS)

Soldiers
A Horseman in the Sky
An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge
Chickamauga
A Son of the Gods
One of the Missing
Killed at Resaca
The Affair at Coulter's Notch
The Coup de Grâce
Parker Adderson, Philosopher
An Affair of Outposts
The Story of a Conscience
One Kind of Officer
One Officer, One Man
George Thurston
The Mocking-Bird

Civilians
The Man Out of the Nose
An Adventure at Brownville
The Famous Gilson Bequest
The Applicant
A Watcher by the Dead
The Man and the Snake
A Holy Terror
The Suitable Surroundings
The Boarded Window
A Lady from Red Horse
The Eyes of the Panther

CAN SUCH THINGS BE?

Can Such Things Be?
The Death of Halpin Frayser
The Secret of Macarger's Gulch
One Summer Night
The Moonlit Road
A Diagnosis of Death
Moxon's Master
A Tough Tussle
One of Twins
The Haunted Valley
A Jug of Sirup
Staley Fleming's Hallucination
A Resumed Identity
A Baby Tramp
The Night-Doings at "Deadman's"
Beyond the Wall
A Psychological Shipwreck
The Middle Toe of the Right Foot
John Mortonson's Funeral
The Realm of the Unreal
John Bartine's Watc
The Damned Thing
Haýýti the Shepherd
An Inhabitant of Carcosa
The Stranger

The Ways of Ghosts
Present at a Hanging
A Cold Greeting
A Wireless Message
An Arrest

Soldier-Folk
A Man with Two Lives
Three and One Are One
A Baffled Ambuscade
Two Military Executions

Some Haunted Houses
The Isle of Pines
A Fruitless Assignment
A Vine on a House
At Old Man Eckert's
The Spook House
The Other Lodgers
The Thing at Nolan

"Mysterious Disappearances"
The Difficulty of Crossing a Field
An Unfinished Race
Charles Ashmore's Trail

THE DEVIL'S DICTIONARY

BITS OF AUTOBIOGRAPHY
On a Mountain
What I Saw of Shiloh
A Little of Chickamauga
The Crime at Pickett's Mill
Four Days in Dixie
What Occurred at Franklin
'Way Down in Alabam'
Working for an Empress
Across the Plains
The Mirage
A Sole Survivor

SELECTED STORIES
Mrs. Dennison's Head
The Man Overboard
Jupiter Doke, Brigadier-General
A Bottomless Grave
For the Ahkoond
My Favorite Murder
Oil of Dog
Ashes of the Beacon
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52 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent legacy library edition, October 2, 2011
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
This is a can't miss treat for the literary or the civil war buff. Give it as a gift if you want to be remembered.

Bierce is a strange, haunting writer. He comes directly to us in this printing as unedited and sans commentary. Bierce's heavy burden from a rather severe Civil War post-traumatic stress disorder is central to his writings. His `Devil's Dictionary' is frequently quoted but it may do Bierce an injustice as a sort of typecasting to be considered without exploring the full dimensions of the prolific writer in his time and place.

Bierce can be accessed online. The power of Bierce's work for me is captured in his short essay "A Son of the Gods". If you've not sampled Bierce before, give this one a try. It's among those in this collection. It's a rare author that can pull a tear and possess the readers mind's eye. Ambrose Bierce is an author who seizes on simple moments to create a stunning story.

Bierce is a 19th century socio-rhetorical everyman, however, at core, he's like no other witness of the times. His post war stories on the quirks of his San Francisco newspaper beat are thoroughly entertaining. Bierce writes on many topics with an acerbic and cynical tone and elsewhere he writes as a man forged by discipline and fire. He can be genteel. He can be over the top. He can be moving and empathetic. He can be rough as a cob. There is an essential human reflection to be considered in every tale. In the 21st century, his word choices and usage are `quaint' but quite readable although you cannot escape a feeling that already, some meaning is overcome by the intervening 150 years. I'd wager that in another hundred years his material will need a `modern translation' as language moves on.

Bierce comes to us by way of his experience from the Civil War's own variation of Special Operations. The enormous battles he experienced would seem enough but Bierce provided himself to constant, daily frontline action in too many skirmishes to detail as a soldier of reconnaissance, surveillance and topographically mapping the next killing field. Every Bierce sentence and thought is anchored in his incredible battlefield pedigree from Shiloh, Corinth, Chickamauga, Chattanooga, Kennesaw Mountain, Atlanta and the March to the Sea. On and on Bierce covertly scouts for both Sherman and Grant and then to join the front lines in the open field as a soldier when the scouting was done. He seems to possess a unique ability to interject the eye of the strategist into the micro-travails of his subject. That the young Bierce survived at all to write of the first-person experience seems a miracle.

As a newspaper writer and a short story essayist, Bierce wrote more than can be bound. In this collection of his `popular' works, he deals with his demons in general society ... jaded, haunted and unrelenting. Bierce provides a consistently powerful reading experience. Curiously, Rod Serling had to have been close to Bierce's writings. Serling's Twilight Zone introductory signature line, "the place ..., the time ..." is directly from the "Mocking-Bird". You will easily recognize elements adapted to many TV and movie scripts.

The reader is well served by this high quality Library of America publication. One can debate the collection for completeness but it is certainly good enough in nearly 900 'bible print' pages. 5-star superb.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Some brief lessons from a true master., October 30, 2011
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
This is quite a good collection of some of Ambrose Bierce's best works of fiction and non-fiction in a nice compact hardback volume. The publisher is the prestigious "Library of America" which has been anthologizing for years those books regarded as the best and most significant ever produced in the literary history of the United States. When I heard that they were going to put into circulation some of Bierce's writings I could only thought: "Wow, about time!!!". You know, Bierce has always been something of an outsider and despite the more than evident quality of his writing (he has more substance than Mark Twain and is the best stylist of his generation) his figure and works remain not very well known or appreciated. Proof of this is the fact that "The Library of America" had even published the works of pulp writers like H.P. Lovecraft or Dashiell Hammett before Bierce's (who is the much better author). For many, he is still just the guy who wrote "The Devil's Dictionary" (a cruel satirical volume inconsistently marketed as "a book of humour") and that quaint short story of a man about to be hanged who sees the events of his life passing before him. This is a pity, but the truth is that Bierce's style and grim usual themes are not for everyone and that his unrelenting acerbic wit coupled with his biased opinions can disgust many people as they confront them against some very uncomfortable truths. Anyway, it is beyond this humble reviewer's remit to change the world's ways in that respect.

This new volume is an excellent introduction for anyone wishing to penetrate into the dark, witty and ingenious world of the most genuine satirist and maverick America has ever produced. It includes his two main volumes of short-stories "Can Such Things Be?" and "Tales of Soldiers and Civilians". "The Devil's Dictionary" is also contained inside the package, though the version reprinted here is not the most complete and comprehensive to date. Other works included are his civil war auto-biographical sketches and a final assortment of grotesque and wildly humorous stories. In my opinion, some missing masterpieces like "The Parenticide Club" or "Fantastic Fables" should have been included as well. Bierce thought that the novel was nothing short of an artifice and didn't care at all for it, so don't look for any long prose work here, only brief lessons by a true master. American literature does not get much better than this, anyway.

In short, this anthology dedicated to Ambrose Bierce constitutes a very good excuse to discover an outstanding (though somewhat underrated) man of words who excelled in all the narrative genres he cultivated and whose works are one of the last hidden gems buried under American letters.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Where Ya' Been?, October 20, 2011
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
A recent WSJ review sparked my interest, and...well, where has AB been? Or where has this slacker been, more likely! A wonderful writer from 150yrs. ago and the finest shortstory genius I have ever enjoyed. Such writing with such wisdom is rare indeed! Probably, everyone knows AB well. A must read to newbies like me. Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful...as Mr. Welk was fond of saying. Congrats to the Lib. of America for giving us mainliners another chance to enjoy this giant from the War Between the States (heh! heh!). Buy it, Mikey will like it!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ambrose bierce, March 30, 2013
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
they should teach this author in high school-and also in college-his style of writing is clearly 19th century-he examines his own experiences during the civil war and sometimes his writing details the horrifying details of that conflict-also his fiction parallels that of Poe, a contemporary-you will not be disapointed
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommendation for Devil's Dictionary, March 6, 2013
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
Book contained great wit and humor along with blood curdling recounting of what war is really like--
should be required reading for all members of congress and all the parents of kids who can't
wait to get their hands of a pair of Quad-50's as they rush out to defend America's (special)
interests...very sobering reading.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bierce, January 29, 2012
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
The Tales are numerous, brief, varied, and often powerful. Bierce has a distinctive voice. There are no wasted words, and the reader sees clearly both the characters and the setting. And if you like Mark Twain and/or H.L.Mencken, you'll love The Devil's Dictionary.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great reading of an evening, February 25, 2014
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
The is a must read volume, put it in your library or on your book shelf beside of Mark Twains' works. Great reading by great men.

Robert10WV
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Glad I bought it, February 10, 2014
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
Excellent content and well bound old style craftsmanship which you don't see very often today. I'd buy it for a friend.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Irreverent Wit and the Brutality of War, November 18, 2014
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This review is from: Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America) (Hardcover)
From my college days I've owned a copy of Ambrose Bierce's "Devil's Dictionary," but I had not known his short stories. His stories set in the U.S. Civil War are among the toughest and most honest about the nature and brutality of war ever, from an era when war was too much romanticised. Awesome.
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Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary, Tales, and Memoirs (Library of America)
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