on an essay for Granta, reviewing for the New York Times Book Review, editing The Best American Short. Stories , writing a new novel. The Best Short Stories of and the Yearbook of the American Short Story by Edward J. O' . The Best American Short Stories by Richard Russo, NPR coverage of The Best American Short Stories by Richard Russo and Heidi Pitlor. News, author interviews, critics' picks and more.
|Language:||English, Spanish, Japanese|
|ePub File Size:||21.51 MB|
|PDF File Size:||15.45 MB|
|Distribution:||Free* [*Regsitration Required]|
The Best American Short Stories book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Edited by the award-winning, best-selling aut. The Best American Short Stories (The Best American Series ®) [Richard Russo, Heidi Pitlor] on soundofheaven.info *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The Best American Short Stories (Best American Short Stories) by Richard Russo - book cover, description, publication history.
Characters shouldn't realize things: Amazon Drive Cloud storage from Amazon. In other words, a perfect cowboy story. The ending was a perfectly played note that just hung in the air for minutes after, resonating. Collins rated it it was amazing. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Delicate Edible Birds by Lauren Groff:
A bit unbelievable at times, but so sad in the end. Dec 13, Matt rated it liked it. I picked this book up from the library because a friend of mine loved Richard Russo's Empire Falls, and I figured reading his selection of 's best American stories would give me an idea of his sensibilities.
Well, he's a bit of a downer. Which isn't to say he chose poorly. Many of the stories here are powerful and captivating - I'd flip the pages and suddenly find myself at the end, hungering for more. It's only detriment is that many of the stories present sad situations that only dig themse I picked this book up from the library because a friend of mine loved Richard Russo's Empire Falls, and I figured reading his selection of 's best American stories would give me an idea of his sensibilities.
It's only detriment is that many of the stories present sad situations that only dig themselves deeper into sadness, desperation, and despair, without trying to find some consolation - true to heart tragedies. Admittedly, this is mostly a personal issue, but it's still hard to read more than one of these stories in a sitting. There are stories mired in quiet sadness, the frenetic energy of war, and wild waves of desire.
Just because the stories weren't all to my liking, doesn't mean they were bad - on the contrary, I'd recommend this addition to the Best American Short Stories collection to anyone who enjoys literary fiction. Apr 20, Alan rated it it was amazing. Truly outstanding collection - one of the best ever.
The book begins with one sotry about a psychiatrist who loses a poker game to a former patient, another about a deaf girl who meets a photographer who felt guilty about how his father abused his deaf mother, and a third about two cousins — a younger one who loved animals but had no money and an older one who became a lawyer but never found love in his life like the younger one.
There is a sotry Safari by Jennifer Egan, who just won the Pulit Truly outstanding collection - one of the best ever. There is a sotry Safari by Jennifer Egan, who just won the Pulitzer prize for fiction writing.
There is another about a lion tamer who falls in love with a trapeze lady and one PS by Jill McCorkle about a lady writing to her psychologist after he did nothing to help her marriage even though her husband became a fundamentalist.
Some great ones were: All Boy Lori Ostlund , about a very particular and proper young boy whose father leaves the family for a male lover, The Seagull Army Descends on Strong Beach Karen Russell , about a boy who falls in love with the girlfriend of his older brother while the family breaks apart as the mother loses her job due to a seagull, and The Netherlands Live with Water Jim Shepard which seems like a novelette about a future in which the waters from global warming are inundating Holland.
Books like this remind me of how great literature can be. They also introduce me to great authors I never would learn about anywhere else. Feb 05, Natalie rated it liked it Shelves: A hit or miss collection, but there were a number of 5's that just blew me away, including: I appreciated reading a story about a soldier returning from war Someone Ought to Tell Her There's Nowhere to Go that wasn't overly sentimental and didn't A hit or miss collection, but there were a number of 5's that just blew me away, including: I appreciated reading a story about a soldier returning from war Someone Ought to Tell Her There's Nowhere to Go that wasn't overly sentimental and didn't involve the soldier shooting an animal in an act of transference.
Most of the BASS stories also feel the same in terms of socioeconomics characters and authors. There was a bit of diversity in this collection, but I'd still like to see more. Much as I love NYC, there is a wider world and wealth of experience out there. Sadly, in terms of the diversity of the number of journals from which the stories were taken, this collection was a BIG disappointment. There are literally hundreds of journals out there that publish great work, and yet this collection of about 20 stories contained 4 stories from Tin House, 3 from McSweeney's, 2 from The New Yorker lower than usual , and 2 from The Atlantic.
It's time for that to change. I'm going to refrain from assigning any stars to a collection I was fortunate enough to be a part of; and although there were so many amazing stories by writers I'd never encountered before and some old favorites , it would probably be impolitic to list those without commenting on every single other story in the collection So I won't do any of that. If someone I'm going to refrain from assigning any stars to a collection I was fortunate enough to be a part of; and although there were so many amazing stories by writers I'd never encountered before and some old favorites , it would probably be impolitic to list those without commenting on every single other story in the collection If someone came up and handed you that story out of context and told you it was by Annie Proulx, would you have believed it?
This isn't to suggest for a second that Shipstead is being derivative -- she's not, and if anything it would be like Proulx branching out in a different direction. I'm raising the question because of the setting, the bleakness, and the quality of the writing.
For me, the biggest giveaway actually would've been the title: Proulx has written so many cowboy stories, including a marvelous one called "Them Old Cowboy Songs," that she'd hardly go around calling more stories "cowboy. Would you have fallen for it? If not, why not? If so, why? View all 3 comments. Oct 21, Matt rated it liked it Shelves: I read this book on-and-off from spring of to fall of , nearly two full years. I skipped about eight or so stories because I didn't like the first pages, but the other ish pages were well-read.
Half of these stories are puffed-up ramblings from over-educated toolbags who got their Masters in English and are trying way too hard. My point is, some feels soulless, or in the best case scenario, some tales feel like the medium and form of the "short story" is more the message; how it was I read this book on-and-off from spring of to fall of , nearly two full years.
My point is, some feels soulless, or in the best case scenario, some tales feel like the medium and form of the "short story" is more the message; how it was written seems more important to these authors than the plot or the story itself. Only about 8 of these plus short stories are worth more than one reading, but those good ones are jaw-dropping.
Just write your debut novel already so you can start teaching in you hometowm eight years from now when it doesn't work out for you.
Especially Tea Obreht and Jennifer Egan. Aug 17, amy rated it it was amazing. I love this series And these short stories are always incredible - so different from one another and so amazingly well-written.
I especially loved: My last attempt to explain to you what happened with the lion tamer - Brendan Matthews All boy - Lori Ostlund The Netherland lives with water - Jim Shepard Raw water - Wells Tower One of my favorite parts of this series is the section of Contributors' Notes at the back of the book.
There is a very brief bio of each writer, a I love this series There is a very brief bio of each writer, and their explanation of where their story came from and how it developed. It's like seeing behind the curtain to the creative process and an intimate look at what talent can do with the smallest kernel of an idea. Sep 11, Jeridel Banks rated it it was ok. I thought this collection would be worth the read, but it really wasn't. Some stories are OK. They can pull you in, but some stories crumble halfway through.
One story I particularly disliked and ended up skipping was Jim Shepard's "The Ne I thought this collection would be worth the read, but it really wasn't.
It was too dry and dealt too much with a specialized area for me to really connect with the story or the characters. Feb 11, Arja Salafranca rated it it was amazing. The Best American series, for those unfamiliar with the series, consists of a range of stories published in US and Canadian journals from the previous year.
Sep 16, Eleanor Saltzman rated it it was amazing. A great collection this year. My favorites, in no real order: I was really disappointed by the Wells Tower story. I heard nothing but great stuff about him, and then the story was really overwritten. Also, it's too bad they had two different futuristic world-gets-flooded stories in close proximity. They were my two least favorites. But overall the best collection in a few years, my A great collection this year.
But overall the best collection in a few years, my favorite since the Amy Tan year. Feb 22, Sage rated it it was ok.
Some of the stories in this collection do have heart, but the majority lack originality, vision, and even authenticity. Maybe it's a problem with the editor of this edition, but it does not make me feel very optimistic about the state This is the first collection of Best American Short Stories that I have read, and I was pretty disappointed.
Maybe it's a problem with the editor of this edition, but it does not make me feel very optimistic about the state of American writing if this was the best they could come up with. Oct 12, Carmen Petaccio rated it really liked it. Five Favorites: The Valetudinarian by Joshua Ferris 2. Delicate Edible Birds by Lauren Groff 3. The Ascent by Ron Rash. Oct 12, Hester Rathbone rated it really liked it Shelves: I adore the Best American Short Stories series.
The short story is a difficult form, and I have such respect for writers who can carry it off. The short story is basically the middle child of writing. Longer than the poem, which can contain a flash of brilliance or insight and stand on its own, but shorter than the novel which can create a backstory and layers of conflict and self-discovery that the characters must work through. At it's worst, the short story can be perfectly awful - boring or s I adore the Best American Short Stories series.
At it's worst, the short story can be perfectly awful - boring or self-important or incomprehensible. But at it's best, the short story can live inside of you and continue to grow, such as Jhumpa Lahiri's "A Temporary Matter" or Tobias Wolff's "Bullet in the Brain", one of the greatest stories I've ever heard read in my entire life.
This short story collection, like all short story collections, will live in my car, to be pulled out and read at rest stops and doctor's offices and restaurants and any other place where I find myself stuck for a 30 minute interval.
I just hit two stories that immediately became lodged in my brain. In each collection, there are always a handful that stand out as needing to be mentioned specifically.
These two came one right after the other this time. It tackles so many questions within its slim form - what it means to be ever moving with the force of industry and technology and what that does not only to the land we all live on but to the people who care for it and work it. What it is to be "neighborly" and how well we actually know and care for the people who form the tapestry of our everyday lives.
The difference between how we perceive someone and what they actually are like. The difference between the stories we hear about someone and the reality they exist in. Plus, I just loved the voice of this particular narrator. I think that, in part, this one appealed to me because the main character in it is a woman who is going through the engagement and wedding planning process, something I'm currently doing in my own life. Unlike me, though, she becomes more and more upset with the entire process, what her emotions related to it actually mean, and who she thinks her fiancee is.
I loved the parallels between this story and Rime of the Ancient Mariner, loved how this once incident in her life set in motion this chain of events which caused the world she thought she know to come crashing down around her.
I don't know how much insight she had into her own hand in this - it seemed like the protagonist really struggled to see the world as anything more than "against her" and that she kept wanting anyone but her to take responsibility for things in life.
But I loved seeing the inner workings of that struggle, of accidental loss and purposeful shoving away of things. Maybe not the strongest story, but it's in a letter format, which always appeals to me. It's a letter from a woman to her former therapist.
Naturally, this appealed to me. As my dad would say, "The monkey likes to see the monkey do. Was I at all helpful? Did they find any peace or comfort? Could they tell when I liked them or didn't feel connected to them? Did they ever leave or marry or trust so-and-so? All those unanswered questions…sometimes it's nice to imagine those answers, and I think this story does a bang-up job of doing that.
September - I read a few more stories over this past week and again, a few stood out. I love his viewpoint - it's so hard to make a main character who is simultaneously completely self-centered and still sympathetic, still someone who you can understand their viewpoint.
There are so many wonderful father and son tales out there, and this one stands all of them on their heads, in a way.
I think that the older we get, the more we begin to re-examine the moments which have made up our lives, the ones that we nurse and sulk over as we grow into adults.
Those moments when you think you understand yourself and your family dynamic, only to look at the story from a slightly different point of view and wonder - have I been wrong this whole time? The older we get, the more complicated our family relationships become, particularly with our parents. As we age, we get more information, but it is compounded with more stories, more details. That doesn't necessarily need to more wisdom though, does it?
Find the moment a choice was made that made other choices impossible. Characters shouldn't realize things: I don't really have a lot to say about this particular one, except that it perfectly captures what it's like to be not only a child, but an outsider child.
One where you know you don't fit, you understand that the peers and adults around you operate a different frequency from you, but you can't for the life of you figure out how to get on that frequency. January, - I know I finished this some time in December, but now for the life of me I can't think of when. The last five stories in the book were good, but definitely nothing memorable, save for one.
That story was lovely in its pain and artfulness. The characters were deep and real and raw. You could really sense what it is to love, to be lonely, to want, to lose. In other words, a perfect cowboy story. Oct 25, Brad Hodges rated it really liked it. When it comes to short stories, I have a particular like.
I tend to enjoy stories that are funny, and that have a plot arc. Those stories that are meditative and in which not much happens don't do much for me. As one would imagine, the latest volume of Best American Short Stories a series that goes back over thirty years has some stories that I thought were wonderful and some that I thought were ho-hum, and one that I could not make heads or tails of.
I give guest editor Richard Russo credit fo When it comes to short stories, I have a particular like. I give guest editor Richard Russo credit for making his selection broad enough in scope so as to seem all the same. I know I would be tempted to. There are twenty stories here, arranged in alphabetical order by author. One of my favorites led things off, "Donkey Greedy, Donkey Gets Punched," by Steve Almond, a comic tale of a psychologist who is treating a professional poker player.
Another favorite is "Painted Ocean, Painted Ship," by Rebecca Makai, about a Coleridge scholar who finds herself cursed after she shoots an albatross, and "The Cowboy Tango," a gorgeous story by Maggie Shipstead about unrequited love on a dude ranch. In the next tier I would add these stories with exceptionally long titles: Joshua Ferris' "The Valetudinarian," about an elderly man getting the gift of a prostitute for his birthday, starts promisingly, but I found that it fell apart at the end.
Kevin Moffett's "Further Interpretations of Real-Life Events" is a bit of a mind-bender, with the story about a short-story writer and all the rules of writing, which Moffett proceeds to break, one by one.
It may have been because I read this story before going to bed, but I had no idea what was happening in it, although I perk up at the pornographic elements of it. I solidly enjoyed a good three-quarters of the stories, though, so it was well worth the investment. May 27, Paul Cockeram rated it really liked it. One standout story in this collection is Steve Almond's "Donkey Greedy, Donkey Gets Punched," a tale of modern-day hubris focused through the fashionable lenses of poker and therapy.
Another story of our cultural moment comes in "Someone Ought to Tell Her There's Nowhere to Go," in which Danielle Evans processes the war in Iraq and the inevitable damage to its soldiers and their families. I like the voice of that piece a lot--its frantic, cynical bewilderment over how to give our dear ones what One standout story in this collection is Steve Almond's "Donkey Greedy, Donkey Gets Punched," a tale of modern-day hubris focused through the fashionable lenses of poker and therapy.
I like the voice of that piece a lot--its frantic, cynical bewilderment over how to give our dear ones what they want without understanding at all why they want it. When the main character's daughter wants to see the latest young, hypersexualized singing act, he finds he cannot escape the singer, Mindy, who "was on the side of the bus they took to the zoo.
Mindy was on the nightly news, and every other commercial between kids' TV shows. Mindy was on the radio, lisping, 'Pop my bub-ble, pop pop my bub-ble. Rebecca Makkai and James Lasdun turn in some eerie page-turners, but the funniest story has to be "My Last Attempt to Explain to You What Happened with the Lion Tamer," with its priceless first line, "He wasn't even a good lion tamer, not before you showed up.
Two stories, "The Netherlands Lives with Water" and "Raw Water," look forward into the near future in order to explore some dystopian consequences of global warming and genetic engineering, respectively. All the stories repay the reading, though a few stories might be better skimmed. Richard Russo seems to enjoy an eclectic taste. With its diversity of mood, theme, setting, and character, there is sure to be at least one stand-out story in this collection for every reader. Okay guys, It's seven in the morning in the land of the midnight sun.
This collection is by definition eclectic. I found it annoying. It is somehow difficult to switch between different styles, personalities of authors, their approaches to telling a story. It feels, pardon the term, promiscuous.
The language of all stories is precise, polished and beautiful. I am jealous. Mo Okay guys, It's seven in the morning in the land of the midnight sun. Moreover, in his introduction, the editor stated that he appreciated when the author's command of the language was used to move the story forward rather than to show off.
It felt this way to me as well. Many stories, though, irritated me for the lack power in them. The authors added short descriptions to their stories at the end of the book: It was an interesting glimpse into creative process. However, it did show why there often was no punch to a story: To a lot of authors, a short story is a kind of literary still life: The stories are seldom drawn from the authors' personal experiences. They sound fake. The authors proudly talked about how to came up with the characters, how they borrowed particularly sexy lines.
It was offputting. A couple of stories had sci-fi elements in them. I guess, due to my early-in-life overdose of sci-fi, they read particularly phony. I think it is just not my cup of vodka. I like the stories raw, relationships effed up and hopeless or at least grim, future -- uncertain, hope -- ephemeral, life -- deadly. Jun 10, Rhonda Browning White rated it it was amazing. I had an assignment to read four stories from this collection, but I couldn't stop there.
Russo has done a great job of picking twenty powerful short stories from the hundred or is it two hundred? It would be difficult to narrow these stories down to my favorites, but the ones I most loved, I suppose, are the ones that I can recall off the top of my head, as the characters really stuck with me.
Lauren Groff's "Delicate Edible Birds" r I had an assignment to read four stories from this collection, but I couldn't stop there. Lauren Groff's "Delicate Edible Birds" relates the heartbreaking story of a woman reduced to offering her body in exchange for freedom during the German takeover of Paris.
I'd read this before in "Glimmer Train," but couldn't resist reading it again. Ron Rash's "The Ascent" haunted me the night I read it. How I wanted to rescue that child! Lori Ostlund's "All Boy" gave new meaning to coming "out of the closet.
Marlin Barton's "Into Silence" pulled off something I'd never have the guts to attempt--a main character who is deaf. Yet he did it with grace, holding our hands as he led us into her silence. Barton is an acquaintance. Regardless, this is an amazing story. To create a series or add a work to it, go to a "work" page. The "Common Knowledge" section now includes a "Series" field.
Enter the name of the series to add the book to it. Works can belong to more than one series. In some cases, as with Chronicles of Narnia , disagreements about order necessitate the creation of more than one series. If the series has an order, add a number or other descriptor in parenthesis after the series title eg. By default, it sorts by the number, or alphabetically if there is no number.
If you want to force a particular order, use the character to divide the number and the descriptor. So, " 0 prequel " sorts by 0 under the label "prequel. Series was designed to cover groups of books generally understood as such see Wikipedia: Book series.
Like many concepts in the book world, "series" is a somewhat fluid and contested notion. A good rule of thumb is that series have a conventional name and are intentional creations , on the part of the author or publisher.
For now, avoid forcing the issue with mere "lists" of works possessing an arbitrary shared characteristic, such as relating to a particular place. Avoid series that cross authors, unless the authors were or became aware of the series identification eg.
Also avoid publisher series, unless the publisher has a true monopoly over the "works" in question. So, the Dummies guides are a series of works.