What is the synopsis and reaction behind "The Ambitious Guest"?

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reidalot eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The "Ambitious Guest" is a story about a content family living in a dangerous rocky location, called The Notch. A young man, the ambitious guest, happens by and the family invites him into their cottage. The guest discusses his ambition and how he wants to be remembered when he dies. The simple family also begins discussing their ambitions and what they desire. The guest disrupts the family's contentment in their cottage. The Slide, falling rock, comes and all rush from the safety of the cottage and perish. Ironically, the guest gets what he wishes for- a grand tomb! To be content with what you have and not be led to false hopes could be a reaction to this story.