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Paperback New Sudden Fiction: Short-Short Stories from America and Beyond Book

ISBN: 0393328015

ISBN13: 9780393328011

New Sudden Fiction: Short-Short Stories from America and Beyond

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Format: Paperback

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Book Overview

An all-new volume--students and lovers of literature take note: this is serious writing that's fun to read. Responding to America's love affair with the short-short, editors Robert Shapard and James Thomas searched thousands of books and magazines to select these sixty stories--each under 2,000 words, each with its own element of surprise, whether traditional, experimental, humorous, moving, or magical. In the process they discovered both new talents...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

It must be a pioneer collection of new sudden fiction.

Marvelous collection of an emerging sub-genre: the new sudden fiction - label given by the editors themselves, Robert Shapard and James Thomas, who decided to split the new genre, the short-short story, "using Solomon's wisdom", into two sub-genres: the new sudden fiction and the flash fiction. Terrific short-shorts. I pinpoint, in order for future readers not to skip, "The Red Fox Fur Coat" by Teolinda Gersão. Great story and amazing translation by Margaret Jull Costa. I have credits to say that because I am a Portuguese speaker. Enjoy the reading.

Short story collection

This collection has a nice variety of different stories, mostly by well known writers. Nonetheless, as usual, there are some that I find truly appealing and some utterly boring. This is a very safe collection, nothing really edgy or exciting. Same old same old. Nice enough. Fun to read, but ordinary. Many opportunities were missed to include some new ideas, new writers, new directions.

Christmas Pie!

Put in your thumb and pull out a plum. Eat one at a time, slowly. Congratulations and thanks to Shapard and Thomas for collecting these stories.

Love `em, hate `em, but not for long

Short attention span? This collection of sixty ultra-short stories, averaging five pages in length, provides readers a great chance to check out a wide variety of writing styles and themes with a minimal time investment. It can best be described as - eclectic: stories are bizarre, familial, philosophical, depressing, nostalgic, unexpected, creepy...and on and on. They are written both by popular, familiar, famous authors as well as obscure, minimally published, or up-and-coming types, foreign and domestic. With stories created by sixty different writers, readers are likely to dislike a few, but the overall reading experience will just as likely be a good one. This short-short story collection is engaging, thought-provoking and unique - a great read, especially for lovers of the short story genre.

Broad in Scope, a Bit Uneven in Quality

This compilation is a great effort at both defining "sudden fiction" by example and at displaying the broad scope of the work that's out there, including pieces from all over the globe. The work, according to the editors, was collected over a set period in the early 00's from what has been getting published in journals and magazines around the world. In that regard, this collection truly succeeds in capturing what the current flavor/definition is for the short-short story (not to be confused with "flash fiction," which is even shorter) (and collected in a different companion book by the same publisher) (I also admittedly plan to read it eventually) and ensures that there won't be (m)any repeats in here from other anthologies you may have read. What is slightly disappointing about this collection is that the quality (for this reviewer) is a bit uneven. While all the stories are of rather similar lengths (3 to 5 pages for the most part), some simply go nowhere, reflecting on a moment or character in detail and arriving at very little in the way of stimulating conclusions. Others, such as Tobias Wolfe's or Sam Shepard's (two of the best in the bunch), nicely portray real conflicts, draw very real characters, and maintain forceful narratives throughout, with endings that satisfy. If you enjoy short fiction, this is certainly worth reading, then perhaps selling back if you find only a little that you like (I'll probably keep my copy, as I think I like the parts I like enough to want to read them again later on). If you're trying to get into what's going on in contemporary short(-short) fiction, there is no better place to start. Author bios in the back will give you other book titles and such as launching points for further reading as well.
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