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Babes in the Jungle

William Sydney Porter, better known by his pen name O. Henry, was an American short story writer. O. Henry's stories frequently have surprise endings. In his day he was called the American answer to Guy de Maupassant. Actually, the reputation of O. Henry never accepted in serious literary criticism. But only he could write stories that could make people laugh as much as they do and feel speechless. Stories with gentle, warm-hearted characters and ironic plot twists at the end. These iconic plot transitions were soon referred to as “O. Henry Endings.” Like in his story "The Gifts of the Magi”, a tale about a young couple, who are short of money but desperately want to buy each other Christmas gifts. She cut and sold her hair to buy him a pocket watch fob chain. He sold his watch to buy her a jewelled comb… One of the themes of O Henry's stories seems to be tricksters getting tricked. The stories also seem to deal with issues of supposedly smart city dwellers versus country hicks or recent immigrants. As Babes in the Jungle opens we have two hucksters or confidence men talking about how easy it is to take advantage of residents of New York City. They go on and on about how they even feel bad about taking their money through sales of phoney gold mines and such. They have just recently met and they are each trying to impress the other. Listen online to free English audiobook "Babes in the Jungle” on our website to experience O. Henry's short story.

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