fiction (short)

short story collection
Short story collection to be read. Photo credit: Karen Kao

Short fiction is incredibly hard to write. All the more reason to ooh and aah over every great short story, whether published in a literary journal or as a collection. I have a personal fascination with the linked short story, though that’s for my own writing purposes.

About a year ago, this towering stack of books represented every short story collection still in my to-be-read pile. For an author like Mavis Gallant, I bought a collection of all her work. For a debutante like Dieuwke Van Turenhout, I snatched up a copy of her short story collection that launched just a few days ago.

Since then, I’ve been working hard to read as much short-form fiction as I do the long-form. I now have enough reviews that I must make order out of this chaos. So here, by continent, is a list of my short-form fiction reviews, which now includes a separate category for novellas.

Americas

Interstitial Spaces: Can’t and Won’t by Lydia Davis

Original Sin: This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Díaz

By the Seashore: The Shell Collector by Anthony Doerr

The Art of the Story: The Art of the Story edited by Daniel Halpern

Talk Story: This Is Paradise by Kristiana Kahakauwila

Ribbons: Her Body & Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado

Empty Pasture in Afternoon: The Tsar of Love and Techno by Anthony Marra

Vietnam: The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien

Fractured Fairy Tales: You Know You Want This by Kristen Roupenian

Red Stick Festival: Buckskin Cocaine by Erika Wurth

asia

Kawaakari: Palm-of-the-Hand Stories by Kawabata Yasunari

No Heroes: Drifting House by Krys Lee

Ghost City: Hong Kong Noir edited by Jason Y. Ng and Susan Blumberg-Kason

Carrots & Kiwis: Revenge by Yoko Ogawa

New Vietnam: Wild Mustard: Voices from New Vietnam edited by Charles Waugh, Nguyen Lien, and Van Gia

europe

Judge Dee: The Chinese Nail Murders by Robert van Gulik

German Fables: The Marquise of O– and Other Stories by Heinrich von Kleist

Irish Rovers: Mothers and Sons by Colm Tóibín

Quiet Desperation: Last Stories by William Trevor

Circus Animals: Olifanten warm houden by Dieuwke van Turenhout

oceania

A Little Savage: The Collected Stories of Katherine Mansfield by Katherine Mansfield

Wicked: This Taste for Silence by Amanda O’Callaghan

novellas

Here’s a new category of what I’ll call short form fiction: the novella. Sometimes the term has been chosen by the author to describe her work. In other instances, I’ve opted for this designation based on the slimness of the volume. You decide whether this makes sense.

Another Singapore: If I Could Tell You by Jing-Jing Lee

Cheating: Multiple Choice by Alejandro Zambra