Best Short Story Collections

If you are on the lookout for great storytelling but don’t want to commit to a full-length novel, then short story collections are the answer.  Short story reading offers other advantages–they can be finished in short chunks of time, they can be read in between novels since they may be easier and less challenging, and they also offer a convenient way to try new authors and genres. If you’d like many short stories at your fingertips all at once, short story collections are for you. Here are some great short story collections available on Overdrive/Libby and Hoopla. At the End of the Century: The Stories of Ruth Prawer Jhabvala by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala & Anita Desai In this selection of stories,  Jhabvala’s ability to tenderly and humorously view the situations faced by three (sometimes interacting) cultures—European, post-Independence Indian, and American—is never more acute. The Bazaar of Bad Dreams: Stories by Stephen King Includes twenty-one iconic stories with accompanying autobiographical comments on when, why and how he came to write (or rewrite) each one. “I made these stories especially for you,” says King. “Feel free to examine them, but please be careful. The best of them have teeth.” Chekhov Series Stories by Anton Chekov 19 ebooks of individual stories of Chekhov, that explore life’s mysteries and mundanity in equal measure. The Complete O. Henry Short Stories  by O. Henry Henry’s short stories are known for their wit, wordplay, warm characterization, and surprise endings. His characters can be found roaming the cattle-lands of Texas, exploring the art of the con-man, or investigating the tensions of class and wealth in turn-of-the-century New York. The Complete Short Stories Of Edgar Allan Poe  (In 2 volumes) by Edgar Allan Poe These stories are sure to arrest and transport the reader to the unique world of Poe,  including his tales of mystery and the macabre. Dear Life: Stories by Alice Munro In story after story in this brilliant new collection, Munro pinpoints the moment a person is forever altered by a chance encounter, an action not taken, or a simple twist of fate. Her characters are flawed and fully human: a soldier returning from war and avoiding his fiancée, a wealthy woman deciding whether to confront a blackmailer, an adulterous mother and her neglected children, a guilt-ridden father, a young teacher jilted by her employer. Dubliners – The Original Classic Edition  by James Joyce Declared by their author to be a chapter in the moral history of Ireland, this collection of 15 tales offers vivid, tightly focused observations of the lives of Dublin’s poorer classes. Florida by Lauren Groff The stories in this collection span characters, towns, decades, even centuries, but Florida—its landscape, climate, history, and state of mind—becomes its gravitational center: an energy, a mood, as much as a place of residence. A Manual for Cleaning Women: Selected Stories by Lucia Berlin & Stephen Emerson (ed) The 43 short stories in this posthumous collection were written throughout Berlin’s entire life. Combining humor, grit, wit, and melancholy, her vibrant short stories follow a series of women in different occupations — from cleaning women to ER nurses — all struggling to survive. Men Without Women: Stories by Haruki Murakami & Philip Gabriel Across seven tales, Murakami brings his powers of observation to bear on the lives of men who, in their own ways, find themselves alone. Here are lovesick doctors, students, ex-boyfriends, actors, bartenders, and even Kafka’s Gregor Samsa, brought together to tell stories that speak to us all. Nine Stories by J.D. Salinger Nine exceptional stories from one of the great literary voices of the twentieth century. Witty, urbane, and frequently affecting, these stories sit alongside Salinger’s very best work. The Refugees by Viet Thanh Nguyen In these powerful stories, written over a period of twenty years and set in both Vietnam and America, Nguyen paints a vivid portrait of the experiences of people leading lives between two worlds, the adopted homeland and the country of birth. Strange Pilgrims by Gabriel García Márquez & Edith Grossman In these twelve masterly stories about the lives of Latin Americans in Europe, García Márquez conveys the peculiar amalgam of melancholy, tenacity, sorrow, and aspiration that is the émigré experience. The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie In these twelve riveting stories, the award-winning Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie explores the ties that bind men and women, parents and children, Africa and the United States. Searing and profound, suffused with beauty, sorrow, and longing, these stories map, with Adichie’s signature emotional wisdom, the collision of two cultures and the deeply human struggle to reconcile them. -Archana, Adult Services & Acquisitions Librarian

Your Next TV Show is on Hoopla

Having trouble deciding what to watch after finishing Tiger King?  I am too.  But there’s good news!  The Livingston Public Library’s subscription to Hoopla Digital contains TV series and there’s something for everyone.  If you’re looking to start working out, Hoopla has a plethora of television exercise shows such as Jillian Michaels: Beginner Shred and Gaiam: Rodney Yee Yoga for Beginners. For those looking to be entertained, Hoopla Digital has everything from comedies, to mysteries, true crime, and more.  Some I add to my to-watch list are Call of the Midwife, Pandemic, and The Jim Gaffigan Show. This week I think I am going to have a throwback t.v. night and watch Are You Afraid of the Dark, something I was always too afraid to watch when I was growing up. What are you watching? -Jessica, Adult Services & Acquisitions Librarian