‘’An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge’’ is one of the most widely anthologized American short stories and is considered Ambrose Bierce’s best work of short fiction. First published in Bierce’s short story collection Tales of Soldiers and Civilians in 1891, the story centers on Peyton Farquhar, a southern planter who, while not a Confederate Soldier, is about to be hanged by the Union Army for attempting to destroy the railroad bridge at Owl Creek. As Farquhar stands on the bridge with a noose around his neck, Bierce leads the reader to believe that the rope breaks and that Farquhar falls into the water below, only to escape to his farm, where he is reunited with his wife. It is revealed at the end of the story, however, that Farquhar has, in fact, been hanged and that these imaginings took place in the seconds before his death. While ’’An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" has been occasionally faulted for what some critics consider its gimmicky ending, it has nonetheless been lauded as an example of technical brilliance and innovative narration as well as for its examination of such themes as the nature of time and the complexities of human cognition.
F. Scott Fitzgerald - Tales of the Jazz Age
Though most widely known for the novella The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald gained a major source of income as a professional writer from the sale of short stories. Over the course of his career, Fitzgerald published more than 160 stories in the period's most popular magazines. His second short fiction collection, Tales of the Jazz Age (1922), includes two masterpieces as well as several other stories from his earlier career. One, "May Day," depicts a party at a popular club in New York that becomes a night of revelry during which former soldiers and an affluent group of young people start an anti-Bolshevik demonstration that results in an attack on a leftist newspaper office. "The Diamond as Big as the Ritz" is a fantastic satire of the selfishness endemic to the wealthy and their undying pursuit to preserve that way of life. All of these stories, like his best novels, meld Fitzgerald's fascination with wealth with an awareness of a larger world, creating a subtle social critique. With his discerning eye, Fitzgerald elucidates the interactions of the young people of post-World War I America who, cut off from traditions, sought their place in the modern world amid the general hysteria of the period that inaugurated the age of jazz. This new edition reproduces in full the original collection, stories that represent a clear movement in theme and character development toward what would become The Great Gatsby. In introducing each story, Fitzgerald offers accounts of its textual history, revealing decisions about which stories to include.
Flannery O'Connor - A Good Man is Hard to Find
The collection that established O'Connor's reputation as one of the american masters of the short story. The volume contains the celebrated title story, a tale of the murderous fugitive The Misfit, as well as "The Displaced Person" and eight other stories.
Ismeretlen szerző - The Penguin Book of American Short Stories
This collection offers twenty-one stories from America, a nation which has always been particularly at home with this form, and which has produced many of its masters. Some of the stories included – those by Poe, James and Hemingway for example – are already widely known. Some will be less familiar to the English reader. Ranging from Washington Irving to John Updike, via Ambrose Bierce, Willa Cather and Bernard Malamud, this is an excellent and entertaining introduction to the rich diversity of pleasures that the best American short stories can offer.
M. R. James - Lost Hearts and Other Chilling Tales
"Evil comes with many different faces" A macabre human drama is re-enacted in a Gothic dolls' house; a whistle awakens a force of unspeakable malevolence; an ancient curse is passed from person to person; a grisly crime is avenged from beyond the grave; the tomb of a Swedish count will not rest quietly... M.R. James's chilling ghost stories reveal a world where the familiar becomes diabolical, the smallest object can lead to unimaginable horror, and evil brushes against everyday life in the most unexpected and sinister of ways.
George Saunders - Pastoralia
Hailed by Thomas Pynchon as "graceful, dark, authentic, and funny," George Saunders now surpasses his New York Times Notable Book, CivilWarLand in Bad Decline, with this bestselling collection of stories set against a warped, hilarious, and terrifyingly recognizable American landscape.
J. G. Ballard - The Complete Stories of J. G. Ballard
“More than one thousand compelling pages from one of the most haunting, cogent, and individual imaginations in contemporary literature.”—William Boyd The American publication of The Complete Stories of J. G. Ballard is a landmark event. Increasingly recognized as one of the greatest and most prophetic novelists, J. G. Ballard was a “writer of enormous inventive powers,” who, in the words of Malcolm Bradbury, possessed, “like Calvino, a remarkable gift for filling the empty deprived spaces of modern life with the invisible cities and the wonder worlds of imagination.” Best known for his novels, such as Empire of the Sun and Crash, Ballard rose to fame as the “ideal chronicler of disturbed modernity” (The Observer). Perhaps less known, though equally brilliant, were his devastatingly original short stories, which span nearly fifty years and reveal an unparalleled prescience so unique that a new word—Ballardian—had to be invented. Ballard, who wrote that “short stories are the loose change in the treasury of fiction, easily ignored beside the wealth of novels available,” regretted the fact that the public had increasingly lost its ability to appreciate them. With 98 pulse-quickening stories, this volume helps restore the very art form that Ballard feared was comatose. Ballard’s inimitable style was already present in his early stories, most of them published in science fiction magazines. These stories are surreal, richly atmospheric and splendidly elliptical, featuring an assortment of psychotropic houses, time-traveling assassins, and cities without clocks. Over the next fifty years, his fierce imaginative energy propelled him to explore new topics, including the dehumanization of technology, the brutality of the corporation, and nuclear Armageddon. Depicting the human soul as “being enervated and corrupted by the modern world” (New York Times), Ballard began to examine themes like overpopulation, as in “Billenium,” a claustrophobic imagining of a world of 20 billion people crammed into four-square-meter rooms, or the false realities of modern media, as in the classic “Why I Want to Fuck Ronald Reagan,” a faux-psychological study of the sexual and violent reactions elicited by viewing Reagan’s face on television, in which Ballard predicted the unholy fusion of pop culture and sound-bite politics thirteen years before Reagan became president. Given Ballard’s heightened powers of perception, it is astonishing that the dehumanized world that he apprehended so acutely neither diminished his own febrile imagination nor his engagement with mankind, evident in every story, including two new ones for this American edition. So eerily prophetic is his vision, so commanding are his literary gifts, the import and insight of J. G. Ballard’s deeply humanistic and transcendent works can only grow in years to come.
Maxim Lieber - The American Century
The American Century is the third short story anthology edited by Maxim Lieber. Outstanding authors in America can be divided into two groups: those who are famous for the best-sellers they have written, and those who have devoted their talents to giving an honest picture of American life. It is the latter who are represented in this volume. Many of these authors will be new to the main body of the reading public. This is not because they are no longer printed in the United States except as space allows in the two American magazines which bravely carry on with honest literature despite McCarthyism. The American Century marks the first time that such a collection of stories has been bound into one volume. It is not only an anthology of fine stories, it is a document of courage in Art.
Kelly Link - Magic for Beginners
The nine stories in Link's second collection are the spitting image of those in her acclaimed debut, Stranger Things Happen: effervescent blends of quirky humor and pathos that transform stock themes of genre fiction into the stuff of delicate lyrical fantasy. In "Stone Animals," a house's haunting takes the unusual form of hordes of rabbits that camp out nightly on the front lawn. This proves just one of several benign but inexplicable phenomena that begin to pull apart the family newly moved into the house as surely as a more sinister supernatural influence might. The title story beautifully captures the unpredictable potential of teenage lives through its account of a group of adolescent schoolfriends whose experiences subtly parallel events in a surreal TV fantasy series. Zombies serve as the focus for a young man's anxieties about his future in "Some Zombie Contingency Plans" and offer suggestive counterpoint to the lives of two convenience store clerks who serve them in "The Hortlak." Not only does Link find fresh perspectives from which to explore familiar premises, she also forges ingenious connections between disparate images and narrative approaches to suggest a convincing alternate logic that shapes the worlds of her highly original fantasies.
James Redfield - The Celestine Prophecy
You have never read a book like this before..."The Celestine Prophecy" contains secrets that are currently changing our world. Drawing on the ancient wisdom found in a Peruvian manuscript, it tells you how to make connections between the events happening in your own life right now...and lets you see what is going to happen to you in the years to come. The story it tells is a gripping one of adventure and discovery, but it is also a guidebook that has the power to crystalize your perceptions of why you are where you are in life...and to direct your steps with a new energy and optimism as you head into tomorrow. It is a book that comes along just once in a lifetime to change lives forever.
Margaret Atwood - Wilderness Tips
Here are brilliantly rendered stories that explore themes of loss and discovery, of the gap between youthful dreams and mature reality, of how we connect with others and with the sometimes hidden part of ourselves. In each of these tales Margaret Atwood deftly illuminates the single instant that shapes a whole life: in a few brief pages we watch as characters progress through the passions of youth into the precarious complexities of middle age. By superimposing the past on the present Atwood paints interior landscapes shaped by time, regret and life's lost chances, endowing even the banal with a sense of mystery. Richly layered and disturbing, poignant at times and scathingly witty at others, the stories in Wilderness Tips take us into the strange and secret places of the heart and inform the familiar world in which we live with truths that cut to the bone.
Lucy Maud Montgomery - After Many Days
“A life may go on without ripple or disturbance for so many years that it may seem to have settled into a lasting calm; then a sudden wind of passion may sweep over it and leave behind a wake of tempestuous waters.” This sentence from “The Setness of Theodosia” is the keynote to After Many Days: Tales of Time Passed, the fourth collection of L.M. Montgomery stories to be published from those rediscovered by Rea Wilmshurst. The “wind of passion” sweeps through the lives of Montgomery’s characters in many different guises in these tales. It may come when a lover or family black sheep returns home. It may come as the chance to wreak a revenge plotted over decades. It may come as confession welling from a guilty soul. But the endings here are all happy, because the characters in these stories demonstrate the virtues that Montgomery believed in: patience, trust, forbearance, and love; they deserve their rewards. L.M. Montgomery’s many avid readers have been delighted with the first three volumes in this series: Akin to Anne, Along the Shore, and Among the Shadows. They will be no less delighted with this new collection.
M. R. Forbes - Dead Lucky
When a strange message arrives through an even stranger channel, necromancer Conor Night is driven to discover its meaning, even if it takes a road trip that he might not be healthy enough to survive. Joined by his sexy partner and an undead wise-ass, he’s about to rush headlong into a magic and mayhem filled night in New Orleans that will leave his future riding on a roll of the dice. Luck, be a lady… * Dead Lucky is a standalone novella (20,000 words) set in the contemporary, urban fantasy world of Ghosts & Magic. It precedes Dead of Night in the timeline, and is a great place to sample the series, get a deeper look into Conor’s backstory, or simply enjoy the ride. *
Ismeretlen szerző - Foretold
Richelle Mead, Lisa McMann, Michael Grant, Meg Cabot, Laini Taylor, and nine more of the hottest YA authors to hit the shelves explore the concepts of prophecy and prediction in this story collection edited by NYT bestselling author of The Forest of Hands and Teeth, Carrie Ryan. Have you ever been tempted to look into the future? To challenge predictions? To question fate? It's human nature to wonder about life's twists and turns. But is the future already written—or do you have the power to alter it? From fantastical prophecies to predictions of how the future will transpire, Foretold is a collection of stories about our universal fascination with life's unknowns and of what is yet to come as interpreted by 14 of young adult fiction's brightest stars.
Hanif Kureishi - Midnight All Day
In this astonishing collection of new stories, Hanif Kureishi confirms his reputation as Britain's foremost chronicler of the loveless, the lost and the dispossessed. The characters in Midnight All Day are familiar to all of us: frustrated and intoxicated, melancholic and sensitive, yet capable of great cruelty, and, if necessary, willing to break the constraints of an old life to make way for the new.
Ismeretlen szerző - Slay Ride
Terror tales by Gerald Kersh, Damon Knight, John Burke, Fritz Leiber, E Phillips Oppenheim, Ray Russell, Nugent Barker, John Wyndam.
Ismeretlen szerző - Dark Duets
DARK DUETS: New Tales of Horror and Dark Fantasy will be published in January, 2014 by Harper Voyager. Edited by Christopher Golden, it features an extraordinary lineup of collaborative stories, with the authors of each story collaborating for the very first time. And here they are! -TRIP TRAP by Sherrilyn Kenyon & Kevin J. Anderson -WELDED by Tom Piccirilli & T.M. Wright -DARK WITNESS by Charlaine Harris & Rachel Caine -REPLACING MAX by Stuart MacBride & Allan Guthrie -T. RHYMER by Gregory Frost & Jonathan Maberry -SHE, DOOMED GIRL by Sarah MacLean & Carrie Ryan -HAND JOB by Chelsea Cain & Lidia Yuknavitch -HOLLOW CHOICES by Robert Jackson Bennett & David Liss -AMUSE-BOUCHE by Amber Benson & Jeffrey J. Mariotte -BRANCHES, CURVING by Tim Lebbon & Michael Marshall Smith -RENASCENCE by Rhodi Hawk and F. Paul Wilson -BLIND LOVE by Kasey Lansdale & Joe R. Lansdale -TRAPPER BOY by Holly Newstein & Rick Hautala -STEWARD OF THE BLOOD by Nate Kenyon & James A. Moore -CALCULATING ROUTE by Michael Koryta & Jeffrey David Greene -SISTERS BEFORE MISTERS by Sarah Rees Brennan, Cassandra Clare, and Holly Black -SINS LIKE SCARLET by Mark Morris & Rio Youers
Miljenko Jergovic - Sarajevo Marlboro
"Poetic and moving . . . of the many books written on Bosnia, this collection of stories is perhaps the best."-Slavenka Drakulic Sarajevo Marlboro is Miljenko Jergovic's remarkable dbut collection of stories. Jergovic is a child of Sarajevo who remained in the city throughout the war. A dazzling storyteller, he brings a profoundly human, razor-sharp -understanding of the fate of the city's young Muslims, Croats, and Serbs with a subterranean humor and profoundly personal vision. Their offbeat lives and daily -dramas play out in the foreground, the killing zone in the background. Miljenko Jergovic was born in Sarajevo in 1966. A poet and journalist, he writes for the daily Oslobodjenje newspaper. He has written another collection of stories as well as two novels: Buick Riviera and Mama Leone. His work has been translated extensively throughout the world. Stela Tomasevic (Translator) was born in Belgrade in 1963. She studied literature at the University of East -Anglia. She has translated numerous works of nonfiction from the Serbo-Croatian and from the French. She currently works for the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Former -Yugoslavia. Ammiel Alcalay (Introduction) is a scholar, critic, trans-lator and poet. In his own words, "My immersion in a -diversity of languages and cultures has shaped and informed my place within American culture. I have come to see myself as a conveyor of ideas, texts, histories, cultural encounters and narrative points of view that, for a variety of reasons, have not gotten the attention they merit."
John Updike - Trust Me
The theme of trust, betrayed or fulfilled, runs through this collection of short stories: Parents lead children into peril, husbands abandon wives, wives manipulate husbands, and time undermines all. Love pangs, a favorite subject of the author, take on a new urgency as earthquakes, illnesses, lost wallets, and deaths of distant friends besiege his aging heroes and heroines. One man loves his wife’s twin, and several men love the imagined bliss of their pasts; one woman takes an impotent lover, and another must administer her father’s death. Bourgeois comforts and youthful convictions are tenderly seen as certain to erode: “Man,” as one of these stories concludes, “was not meant to abide in paradise.”
Edgar Allan Poe - The Fall of the House of Usher
‘And much of Madness and more of Sin And Horror the Soul of the Plot’ This selection of Poe’s critical writings, short fiction and poetry demonstrates an intense interest in aesthetic issues and the astonishing power and imagination with which he probed the darkest corners of the human mind. The Fall of the House of Usher describes the final hours of a family tormented by tragedy and the legacy of the past. In the Tell Tale Heart, a murderer’s insane delusions threaten to betray him, while stories such as The Pit and the Pendulum and the Cask of Amontillado explore extreme states of decadence, fear and hate. These works display Poe’s startling ability to build suspense with almost nightmarish intensity. David Galloway’s introduction re-examines the myths surrounding Poe’s life and reputation. This edition includes a new chronology and further reading by Tatiana Rapatzikou. Originally published under the title Selected Writings