It proves to be an easier task than I expected, winding up of this series. The short story form has been a favourite of mine ever since I picked up a David Eggers’ Best of McSweeney’s Vol. 2 collection of American current and contemporary short fiction. It was a period when I went to the lending library regularly, a time before the iPad and ebooks for me.
Since that book, I’ve read quite a few short story compendiums and collections, some by one author and a fair number translated from different languages.
I’m surprised that in some quarters the short story is regarded as a lower form of literature. That’s nonsense! Give me a short story collection over a 600 page saga any day.
The Penguin Book Of Modern British Short Stories (Various Authors)
Why do I like them? I enjoy the variety within a single read: different styles, inventiveness, ideas, perspectives, genres – and sometimes written in different periods in literature. It introduces the reader to a variety of writers, some I may not have tried otherwise for their longer novels. If any story isn’t your style, there are others. I can dip in and out the collection at any time.
It’s not easy choosing one over the rest on merit so I’m electing to support the home team and selecting Penguin’s Book of Modern British Short Stories. It’s a varied selection featuring some renowned writers; it’s extremely good.
Other similar reads to consider;
The Door In The Wall by H.G. Wells
A brilliant collection by the old master of Sci-fi, futurism and fantasy.
Russian Short Stories, from Pushkin to Buida by Various Authors
Amazingly varied. An excellent introduction to Russian literature, one of the best for the short story form. Examples from the nation’s renowned names and a few we might not have known.
Best of McSweeney’s Vol.2 by Various Authors
Of course! Equally varied, entirely American (I think), one of the best countries for the short story form too.