A neurotic, parodically self-aware author waits to discuss his archives with a librarian. The rest of the story, more or less, is what happens in between.
But if you think about it long and hard enough, it will break your heart. This story is a strange wonder and balances many elements: a love triangle, a dystopian but believable consumerist future, and sharp sparse prose with beautiful and gory descriptions.
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At its heart it is a tale of two women trying to do everything they can to survive. This is not the story readers think of when they think of Welty. It follows a group of girls at a summer camp.
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The campers are in two groups—the paying girls from Morgana, Mississippi and the charity campers from an orphan home. The two groups dress differently, and act differently, as the orphans cannot swim—they stand in the water while the city girls swim all around them. Adults in the story fall away, and we see the painful dynamics of young women, left to their own devices, on the brink of their sexuality. This leads to almost tragic results.
The main character of Easter, an orphan, is a wonder. In this story, Welty delves into issues such as racism, class, and what it means to be a woman with a deft and poetic touch. This, unsurprisingly, is not enough. What I mean is that it is the kind of story that changes you.
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Blasim writes about the realities of war with such imaginative and staggering grace. Here the ability to disappear knives becomes a metaphor for existence in Iraq and a survival trick. How else to speak of the absurdity of war but to cut through and go beyond?
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The story is so full of life it will make you weep. He slaps her repeatedly, splits her lip and makes her nose bleed, and even threatens her with his Beretta. The physicality is cold, the motivation is dangerous, and the escalation is terrifying. DeBard and Aliette. Twenty feet from the dock he dips below the water and comes up a moment later at the ladder, blowing like a whale.
She feels herself flush, and, trembling, smiles.
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The morning newspapers include a story, buried under the accounts of battles at the Western Front, about a mysterious illness striking down hale soldiers in Kansas. He is brilliant at evoking social nuance and has an unfailing eye for the tiniest detail that will shine light on the whole. This deliciously fat collection gives the reader the chance to dip in and out of one of the best observers of human behaviour. Moore is notable for her arch tone and her sharp humour. But what makes her special is the way she can shift so smoothly to gut-wrenching poignancy.
She writes about terminal illness, family dynamics and infidelity with equal fluency. Some of the best short stories contain unexpected moments of felicity on which the plot pivots.
And so it was that, just as I was compiling this list, I received a giant package containing this doorstep of a book. It might be the most comprehensive collection of short stories… ever, featuring an all-star cast including Angela Carter, Charles Dickens, Roald Dahl and more, selected by David Miller, a literary agent and author. Facebook Twitter Pinterest. Topics Short stories The 10 best Reuse this content.
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