Thursday, February 18, 2016

New & Novel: Short Stories

A short story writer today is almost like a mythical unicorn, an anomaly, an artist writing for the love of a fledgling form of writing. Short stories that are consumed today by large masses usually only appear in The New Yorker, one of the only major outlets that still publishes short stories for fairly substantial amounts of money. Getting a short story published in the most lauded magazine in America is much harder than getting a novel published.

Short stories bring more pressure, because like poets, each paragraph, sentence, and word is more important than they would be inside a large novel. Short stories are precise with their delivery, they must capture the attention of the reader extraordinarily quickly, and tell a full tale from beginning to end in roughly a half hour of reading. Short stories will likely never be as widely read as novels, but they do matter to those who are paying attention. 
~Steven Petite, "Why Short Stories Matter Now More Than Ever"

We are great fans of short stories here at the blog, and happy to bring you a list of some new and novel collections. What we've cherry-picked from the library catalog includes: new stories by Chuck Palahniuk (Fight Club), Helen Oyeyemi (Mr. Fox), Luis Alberto Urrea (The Hummingbird's Daughter) and Joyce Carol Oates; stories by Stefan Zweig, whose memoir inspired Wes Anderson's Grand Budapest Hotel; Ayelet Tsabari, whose stories have been called "[r]eminiscent of the early work of Jhumpa Lahiri"; Regina Ullman, whose stories have never before appeared in English but whose work was admired by Thomas Mann, Hermann Hesse, and Rainer Maria Rilke; stories by Helen Ellis that are part of the "resurgence of the housewife novel"; and more!

Why not take a short story collection out for a spin? Unlike a novel, where you have to decide how many pages to read before you decide whether or not you like it enough to keep reading it, you only have to give a couple of stories a whirl, and you will not have to wait to find out if the ending is disappointing.

Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War edited by Heather Webb

In the Land of Armadillos: Stories by Helen Maryles Shankman

City Beasts Fourteen Stories of Uninvited Wildlife by Mark Kurlansky [eBook]

Refund: Stories by Karen E. Bender 

Fantastic Night Tales of Longing and Liberation by Stefan Zweig [eBook] 

Me and My Daddy Listen to Bob Marley: Novellas and Stories by Ann Pancake 

The Country Road: Stories by Regina Ullmann; translated from the German by Kurt Beals 

The Queen's Caprice: Stories by Jean Echenoz; translated by Linda Coverdale 

Make Something Up: Stories You Can't Unread by Chuck Palahniuk [also eBook, eAudio, book on CD]

The American Lover by Rose Tremain 

American Housewife: Stories by Helen Ellis 

Louisa Meets Bear by Lisa Gornick

The Water Museum : Stories by Luis Alberto Urrea  

Oye What I'm Gonna Tell You: Stories by Cecilia Rodríguez Milanés 

England: And Other Stories by Graham Swift [also eBook] 

Gutshot: Stories by Amelia Gray [also eBook]

Also, if nothing here grabs you, try checking out our Poetry & Short Story Reference Center eResource! It's free with your library card, providing a historically rich collection of hundreds of thousands of classic and contemporary poems, as well as short stories, biographies, and authoritative essays on such topics as poetic forms, movements, and techniques—including contemporary content from the finest publishers.

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