The Moonlit Road and Other Ghost and Horror Stories is another marvelous, inexpensive reprint from Dover Publications. These twelve stories selected from The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce are remarkably good. I intend to become much better acquainted with Ambrose Bierce.
Bierce had an inventive imagination, much like Edgar Allan Poe. In this chilling collection we meet angry spirits seeking revenge, humans transformed into wild beasts, and individuals deranged by encounters with apparitions. Although written a century ago, several stories explored subjects that seemed surprisingly modern. The Man and the Snake is a frightening study of the psychology of one man's imagination. Time and space are transformed in A Psychological Shipwreck. And we meet an emotional, possibly unstable, thinking machine in Moxon's Master.
I considered listing the stories that were my favorites. However, as I enjoyed all twelve stories, I decided to forego the exercise. Buy this little collection. You won't be disappointed.
Ambrose Bierce fought at Shiloh and Chickamauga, was wounded at the battle of Kenesaw Mountain in 1864, and retired after the war at the rank of major. Later, as a newspaperman in San Francisco, his acerbic wit and penchant for satire made him a significant force in its vibrant literary community. In 1913 he disappeared while traveling in Mexico, possibly a victim of the Mexican Civil war.