It is easy to see Flannery O'Connor, Gabriel Marquez or Haruki Murakami in the stories of Karen Russell. To me, she has built on these influences to create her own unique vision. Many of her stories focus on adolescents, on monsters, on fringe people. Some of the work is set in the backwoods of the Florida Everglades. Russell grew up in south Florida, a test lab for all sorts of dsyfunctionality.
The title story of the collection "St. Lucy's Home For Girls Raised by Wolves" (love the title) is a delightful story. It is a school whose purpose is to teach adolescent female were wolves to relate to human society. It is a five stage program run by nuns. Maybe it sounds silly but it is a great story full of all kind of meaning which also shows a lot of insight into the developing years of teenage girls. This is a very funny story.