|"I need a break from the stress of coediting this blog"-Charles
I began to look at lists of the best short stories of the world to find the highest regarded stories. Most, but not all, of them were by authors I was already familiar with. There are also a number of excellent web pages that produce a daily selection of short stories. The best of them, to me, is East of the Web:Short Stories. There are 1000s of short stories that can be read online for free. Dailylit.com has a great selection of short stories. A lot of the short stories online are older public domain works but there are also 1000s of 21th century short stories online. This is important to me as there are no public libraries where I live and I also want my readers to be able to read the stories I post on also. Of the 172 stories I posted on, 85 of them were by one writer, Katherine Mansfield. This post will focus on the best of the short stories I read in 2010 other than those by Mansfield. Here is my list of 2010 short stories, with a brief comment on some. In those cases where I think the work is part of the canon I will say so also. The stories are listed in the order I read them.
- "Bartleby, The Scrivener" By Herman Melville-a strange marvelous story-for sure canon status work
- "Heaven and Hell" by Jhumpa Lahiri -great writer-huge potential-Pulitzer Prize winner
- "A Doctor's Visit" by Anton Chekhov-all his stories are part of the canon
- "The Yellow Wall Paper" by Charlotte Perkins-very interesting work-should be read for sure-maybe canon
- "The Queen of Spades" by Alexander Pushkin-an easy way to read your first Pushkin work-canon work
- "The Gift of The Magi" by O Henry-one must read a few O Henry stories-maybe canon
- "The Open Window" by Saki-either he is the English O Henry or vice versa-also a maybe
- "The Withered Arm" by Thomas Hardy 1888-Hardy has real power-canon work
- "The Metamorphosis" by Franz Kafka -1915-very high canon status work-Life time reading plan work
- "The Dead" by James Joyce 1914-a work of great beauty-high canon status work
- "Squeaker's Wife" by Barbara Baynton -she should be a canon status writer-outback stories
- "Hungary Stones" by Rabindranth Tagore 1916-first Asian to win the Nobel Prize for Literature-canon
- "Stick Fighting" by Olufemi Terry-2009 Caine Prize Winner-this is a really well done story
- "Hands" by Sherwood Anderson-deserves a wider readership-GLBT story
- "Boule de Suif" by Guy de Maupassant 1880-canon status work-best known of his stories
- "The Model Millionaire" By Oscar Wilde -have to have one of Oscar's stories on my list
- "The Nose" by Nikolai Gogol -canon status-just below "The Overcoat"
- "The Overcoat" by Nikolai Gogol-life time reading plan work-super high canon status
- "A Haunted House" by Virginia Woolf 1921-have to have a Woolf on the list
- "The Demon Lover" by Elizabeth Bowen-50/50 on including this
If anyone has any suggestions for short stories for 2011 please leave a comment. I will be doing another post on Katherine Mansfield soon. I already have plans in 2011 to read the complete short stories of James Joyce and a large collection of stories by Collete.
Of these stories the highest canon status works are "The Overcoat" and "The Metamorphosis" (tied basically) followed "The Dead" by James Joyce and "Bartleby the Scrivener" by Herman Melville.