‘On the Sidewalk Bleeding’ by Evan Hunter
‘On the Sidewalk Bleeding’ is a dramatic short story written by the very popular American writer Evan Hunter. Throughout the story Hunter creates suspense using skilful presentation of characters, his thought-provoking variety of themes, the short story’s simple yet effective plot and the author’s impressive writing style and his clever use of symbolism. The base of the plot revolves around a young teenage gang member called Andy. Who has been violently stabbed by a rival gang. Andy is left alone to die as he watches a selection of personalities pass him by, but remains unaided. The story is mostly written from Andy’s thoughts and memories. One of the ways hunter builds suspense is through his dramatic and clever use of language. From the very beginning, Hunter creates tension and suspense by creating such a hard hitting and shocking first line to the story ‘The boy lay on the sidewalk bleeding in the rain’
This line describes the setting, main character and the plot in one clever short sentence that draws you in to the story. The opening of ‘On the Sidewalk bleeding’ is very vivid and visual unlike other short stories. Evan Hunter uses ingenious terminologies to really make us empathise for Andy as he lays in the rain all alone. We nearly feel his pain as Andy tells us the graphic description of his injuries. We sympathise for him. Hunter also describes a purple jacket Andy is wearing. The jacket has ‘The Royals’ lettered across the back of it. This description highlights the importance of the jacket and leaves you asking questions. Who are the royals? This builds excitement and anticipation making you want to read on to answer these questions. Another key way hunter builds suspense is through his explanation and thorough detail of each of the characters personalities and situations. Andy is the main character in the story; he is sixteen years old and is a gang called ‘The Royals’. Andy doesn’t say any dialogue in...
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