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Short Stories

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  166 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
Described by literary critic Robert Morss Lovett as "a novelist of civilization, absorbed in the somewhat mechanical operations of civilization, absorbed in the somewhat mechanical operations of culture, preoccupied with the upper ('and inner') class," Pulitzer Prize-winning author Edith Wharton (1862-1937) also wrote superbly crafted works of short fiction. The seven stor ...more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published October 21st 1994 by Dover Publications (first published 1911)
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(showing 1-30 of 379)
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Ana Maria Rînceanu
"Mrs. Manstey's View" - You are what you view... an Edith Wharton-era real estate story. (5 stars)

"Roman Fever" - What happened that night in Rome so long ago? The secret revealed. (4 stars)

"The Reckoning" - The high price of marital harmony. (4 stars)

"Xingu" - Wild goings-on at a ladies' book group. (4 stars)
Feb 24, 2011 Caroline rated it it was ok
All of the stories in this book were beautifully written. But Wharton kept recycling the same sad themes of corrupted high society, divorce, and scandal. Also, her avant-garde feminism seemed rather confused and contradictory. The only story I actually enjoyed from this selection was Xingu. And even that left a bitter aftertaste. Maybe I would appreciate Edith Wharton more if I read one of her novels where her themes and characterization are fully fleshed out.
Sep 29, 2013 Sarah rated it really liked it
Fabulous little diversion. I find I much prefer her longer works, her writing and characters shine in the longer format and the subject material can be a little grating in nibbles, but overall worthwhile.
Nov 12, 2014 Homeschoolmama rated it it was ok
1.5 stars for the first five stories
3 stars for the last two.

Edith Wharton was a Pulitzer Prize-winning author who wrote stories and novels with one setting; upper crust people from New York or Boston, all of whom had maids, butlers, footmen, governesses, etc., literati who spent their time traveling abroad, speaking French, and discussing novels and investments. Oh yawn. Enough already. I grew pretty tired of the same characters. The stories read like a 19th century soap opera.
Wharton's writ
This contains one of my favorite Wharton turns of phrase: "the mentally unemployed."
Jul 22, 2014 Isabel rated it really liked it
Expiation and the Muse's tragedy were the ones I though were more interesting.
Jan 11, 2016 Sandie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This audio book was witty and fun, just perfect for two hours in the car. The stories, read by singular actors, seemed like little plays. The four pieces are: Mrs. Manstey's View, Roman Fever (my fave), The Reckoning, and Xingu.
Gratia Léger
Aug 09, 2016 Gratia Léger rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Only four stories, but they are magnificent. Very well read. I love the twists.
Jan 10, 2014 Holly rated it really liked it
I am not a great fan of the short story. Just not my cup of tea. This is Wharton at her best comic side. Loved "Xingu". But all were well written as only she can do. I even had to look up some words, as we have changed the use in our current language. That is always interesting and challenging. LOVED IT, overall!
Dec 03, 2011 Sue rated it liked it
I found a degree of variability in quality among these stories. While they all are well-written, some deal with the themes of social ostracism, feminism and relationships between the sexes better and more interestingly than others. My favorites are "The Pelican" and "Xingu".
David Cerruti
Mar 17, 2011 David Cerruti rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: stories
I did not expect these stories to be my cup of tea, but was pleasantly surprised. Roman Fever was my favorite. The twist at the end was elegant. The other three stories poked fun at the upper-class twits of her day. They were reminiscent of stories by Saki, but not as concise.
May 18, 2016 Andrew rated it liked it
Not sure Wharton's art is best displayed in short-form, but a fairly enjoyable read regardless. Particularly enjoyed the more satirical stories - Xingu and Expiation - though the rest were by no means unpleasant.
Oct 20, 2008 Janet rated it it was amazing
There are so many wonderful quotations I could take from these pages. I find my notes and underlined paragraphs throughout the book. It was so enjoyable that I was disappointed that it wasn't longer.
Aug 03, 2007 Renee rated it it was amazing
Shelves: classic
Fantastic character descriptions. Written in the early 1900's, they do not seem outdated and the situations are unique with a mix of humor and poignant tenderness. The vocab was very erudite.
Feb 21, 2011 Megan rated it really liked it
Really loved the sharpness of many of these stories, though by the time I reached the end of the book the hopeless situations and love-going-nowhere was depressing. I'd recommend Xingu.
Mar 01, 2008 Linda rated it it was amazing
audio stories narrated by Alece.
Apr 27, 2012 Susan rated it liked it
Shelves: short_stories
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Edith Newbold Jones was born into such wealth and privilege that her family inspired the phrase "keeping up with the Joneses." The youngest of three children, Edith spent her early years touring Europe with her parents and, upon the family's return to the United States, enjoyed a privileged childhood in New York and Newport, Rhode Island. Edith's creativity and talent soon became obvious: By the a ...more
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