The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

A recent visit to the Finger Lakes region in upstate New York inspired me to download this classic Washington Irving short story. I’m not a big fan of omniscient narrators, and this device is particularly bothersome in this story — the narrator is constantly interjecting his voice into the narrative, and seems to get in the way of a very intriguing tale. But in the end, the fictional world that emerges from this story is vibrant enough to overcome whatever narrative shortcomings I find in its delivery. The residents of Sleepy Hollow share brilliant tales with each other, tales that inspire the imagination of poor Ichabod Crane to believe that he is pursued by a Headless Horseman, an Old World spirit protecting the insular immigrant community against outside influences such as Crane.

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