March 21, 2007

Booking Through Thursday: Short Stories

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Keeping it Short
Booking Through Thursday


Short Stories? Or full-length novels?
And, what's your favorite source for short stories? (You know, if you read them.)
Don't forget to leave a link to your actual response in the comments—or if you prefer, leave your answers in the comments themselves!





I prefer full-length novels. It's difficult to get attached to a character just to have the story end abruptly. The last book of short stories I was reading was The Collected Stories of Carol Shields. My sister-in-law (the same one who bought me Saving Fish...) gave it to me for my birthday last year. I haven't finished it yet but I will. I can't seem to read short stories all at once.




I just love the way Shields writes (or wrote, she died in 2003). It's so simple yet so beautiful and truthful. The ones that stick out are: "Mrs Turner Cutting the Grass," which just goes to show that you never really know people's lives. But the best was "Pardon." It reminds me of a meme. A woman buys an apology card and it becomes contagious. People start apologizing to others.

Other than that one, I like spooky short stories, like Irish Ghost Stories and Shirley Jackson's book of short ones. Anyone read "The Lottery"?

Happy Booking Through Thursday!

PS: Booklovers. please check out The Written World. Kailana is compiling a list of people's top 10 favs of all time. My link is there too.

6 comments :

  1. Hi,
    That Carol Shields' short story collection looks great. I haven't read any books by her yet, and that might be a good introduction.
    Loved The Lottery! One of the best short stories ever.

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  2. I really can't stand short stories. I've rarely ever read them because I hate the genre so much. I don't know why -- many of them are very skillfully done, I just don't like them!!

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  3. Have you read Swann by Shields? It's one of the best sendups of the literary world I ever read.

    I've been meaning to read her short stories - thanks for reminding me!

    melanie

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  4. Melanie- No. I've read the Stone Diaries and I have Unless and Larry's Party to read.

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  5. I may have to look for this one. I've just recently realized I do actually like short stories if they're done right - there just aren't many writers who know how to write short fiction and make it work, if that makes sense. My favorite authors in shorter format, thus far, are John Floyd (a friend - he has a bunch of Amazon shorts), Nabokov, Chekov, O. Henry, James Thurber and Jack Finney.

    I've got The Lottery, but haven't read it, yet.

    BTW, I tend to hack away at short story collections slowly, also. I feel like I have to let one story settle in, somehow, before moving on to the next. Otherwise, it's just a little overwhelming - too many characters and situations all at once.

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  6. Overwhelming- that's how I feel too. I just didn't know how to say it.

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