Archive for the ‘Short Stories’ Category
The world isnâ€™t kind to the characters in Jess Walterâ€™s collection of 13 short stories. Each of them is a loser, living in a â€śfrontier of stale and unfulfilled dreams:â€ť careless fathers, scam artists, ex-cons, gamblers, incestuous brothers, drug abusers.
Dagoberto Gilbâ€™s latest book, BEFORE THE END, AFTER THE BEGINNING, although a slight collection, is loaded with insight and humor. Itâ€™s a book about identity, about the tension between limiting factors outside our controlâ€“ our race, our class, our gender â€“ and our complexity as individuals.
November 9, 2011
Â· Judi Clark Â· No Comments
Tags: Grove Press, Identity, Latin American Â· Posted in: Class - Race - Gender, Humorous, Latin American/Caribbean, Mexico, Short Stories, Texas, y Award Winning Author
Daniel Woodrell is widely known for the movie adaptation of his novel, Winterâ€™s Bone, which won the Sundance Film Festivalâ€™s Best Picture Prize in 2010. He has just published his first book of short stories, THE OUTLAW ALBUM, a collection of twelve dark and riveting stories.
Yes, be careful. Be very careful. The eighteen women in this book write depth-charge stories with the power to disturb and detonate unseen. Do not be deceived by the bland and poorly-designed cover (which I hope is only temporary); none of these tales is ordinary, all are excellently crafted, and a few are exceptional. Joy Williams, in her excellent introduction, calls them “witty, spooky, disorienting, and artful.” They are all those, and also at some level deeply True.
Poor Holden Caulfield. In Catcher in the Rye, he muses, â€śGirls. You never know what theyâ€™re going to think.â€ť How right he was! In Elissa Schappellâ€™s new short story collection, the old blueprints for Appropriate Female Behavior — the name of a vintage etiquette manual, 1963 edition — have all been tossed away. And now the girls and women are forced to muddle through with the new rules: Be yourself but also be what your boyfriend, parents, and girlfriends want you to be as well.
This yearâ€™s editor of THE BEST AMERICAN SHORT STORIES 2011 is Geraldine Brooks, an accomplished journalist and fiction writer. She says of her selections â€śthat the easiest and the first choices were the stories to which I had a physical response.â€ť I would agree that the best stories in this collection are those that are most visceral and physical in nature. Ms. Brooks also states that â€śIn the end, the stories I fell upon with perhaps the greatest delight were the outliers, the handful or so that defied the overwhelming gravitational pull toward small-canvas contemporary realism.â€ť
October 5, 2011
Â· Judi Clark Â· No Comments
Tags: Allegra Goodman, Best American Short Stories, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Geraldine Brooks, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Joyce Carol Oates, Rebecca Makkai Â· Posted in: Short Stories