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How does Ambrose Bierce create suspense in "An Arrest"?

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How does Ambrose Bierce create suspense in “An Arrest”?

     In “An arrest”, Ambrose Bierce creates suspense in the first paragraph by stating five facts about Orrin Brower in the first sentence alone, then by stating a few more in the lines to follow. It is important to state facts like this because you need to get the reader interested at the start otherwise he/she won’t read on. In this case, Ambrose Bierce starts off by saying, “Having murdered his brother-in-law”. This catches the reader’s attention because nearly everyone loves a good murder story. After reading the first few lines, we also learn that this is a fugitive story. Then the thing that caught my attention after this was after he knocked the prison guard down with the lead bar, it says, “he had the folly to enter a forest” which means this was a big mistake!

      In the second paragraph, Ambrose Bierce tells us the night was “dark with neither moon nor stars visible”.

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     “A moment later – it may have been an hour”, it felt like time stood still while they were both standing there. Then moments later Orrin sees the man’s arm lift and point “towards and beyond him”. “He Understood”. Orrin turned back and did what the man had told him to because he knew time was up and he knew he was caught. Orrin turned and started walking in the direction the man told him to. He didn’t dare to breathe or look on either side of him, but he knew the man was behind him. He didn’t even dare to try to escape or run, because he knew he was caught and

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     The last paragraph starts with them entering the town, going “straight” towards the jail. The end becomes the final twist. Orrin Brower enters the jail to find “half a dozen men” getting reading with weapons to hunt down Orrin Brower. This was the search. But this isn’t the biggest twist in the tale, on a table in the corridor he finds the dead body of Burton Duff, who had been killed by the blow to the head with the iron pole at the start of the story. We only find out that this is a ghost story, not a mystery or crime story on the very last line of the story. “And on the table in the corridor, lay the dead body of Burton Duff”.

      Overall I think this is a good story, it has lots of twist, and it’s well written and well planned. My favourite thing about the story is the twist at the very end. It shows Ambrose Bierce does everything he can to create a suspense-filled and interesting story.

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