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Great American Short Stories

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  362 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
Featuring 19 of the finest works from the most distinguished writers in the American short-story tradition, this new compilation begins with Nathaniel Hawthorne's 1835 tale "Young Goodman Brown" and ranges across an entire century, concluding with Ernest Hemingway's 1927 classic, "The Killers." Other selections include Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart," Melville's "Bartleby," Ha ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published July 23rd 2002 by Dover Publications
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Jun 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book really opened my eyes to the great American Classics out there. It also opened my eyes to the great pieces of literature which I was missing. As I have never been a big fan of the modern day books serialized (Gossip Girls? Eww.), but I do think that the classic short stories are very refined and use a lot better vocabulary (and have better context--do I really need to read ten more stories about these cliche break ups? I mean, how may ways can someone break another's heart?). Anyway, t ...more
Dec 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is the best possible choice for a gateway to the very best classic American literature. And what a price! I asked myself years and years ago, "What have I overlooked among the greats in my country?" And this collection showed my ignorant self a thing or two. It really is the best of the best, the essential.

COME ON: 'Bartleby', 'The Yellow Wallpaper', 'An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge', 'Paul's Case', 'The Egg', 'To Build A Fire', 'The Tell-Tale Heart', 'The Killers' - on an on with stellar
Apr 24, 2011 rated it liked it
Interesting compilation of some classic American authors. Short stories are always a little tough on me. I was ambivalent towards most of them. Nathaniel Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown" was by far the best. Hawthorne's take on Puritanism is always fun to read. On its own, probably worth five stars. Sherwood Anderson's "The Egg" was quite a surprise. My second favorite in the book (and given the line-up of authors, that is saying something). Four stars on that one. F. Scott Fitzgerald's "Bernic ...more
Mar 18, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed this diverse anthology of short stories by American authors from the past. I love short stories because I can begin and end them in one sitting. The collection includes classic stories I have read before but enjoyed revisiting, like "Young Goodman Brown," "To Build a Fire," "A Telltale Heart," and "The Yellow Wallpaper." Many others I had not read and enjoyed discovering here, like "A New England Nun," "Bernice Bobs Her Hair," "The White Heron," and "The Luck of Roaring Camp ...more
Oct 03, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Mature peoples who like depressing books
Recommended to Jenna by: Grandma
I really liked Edgar Allen Poe's "The Tell-tale Heart," Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper, "Jack London's (author of Call of the Wild)To Build a Fire, Abrose Bierce's "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" (this was my second favorite), and Theodore Drieser's "The Lost Phoebe." Oh yes, my favorite was "Paul's Case," by Willa Cather. The utter demented, slightly insane air of Paul himself captivated me, as well as the futility of everything he did. Very depressing, obviously, but of c ...more
Aug 27, 2015 rated it liked it
My rating is more based on the editor that cobbled this collection together. It's morbid (unnecessarily so?). The majority of the stories, though it cannot be argued are anything less than amazing, end in death or some other tragedy. The preface gives no hint at it and left me wondering why this wasn't stated as a major theme of the collection. I simply didn't enjoy it as much as I believe it could have benefited from some variety away from the unstated theme. It might have been called Great Ame ...more
Reshma Popat
Aug 01, 2012 is currently reading it
Features 19 works from distinguished writers in American history.
Nathaniel Hawthorne: "Young Goodman Brown"
Edgar Allan Poe: "The Tell-Tale Heart"
Sarah Orne Jewett: "A White Heron"
Charlotte Gilman Perkins: "The Yellow Wallpaper"
Ambrose Bierce: "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"

Those are just a few that can be found this book of short stories. Most of which I've read many times before. Classic stories, I'm sure most of you have read all the short stories I mentioned.

I know I have read them.
I am s
Kevin Lucia
May 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
"Young Goodman Brown" - Nathanial Hawthorne
"The Yellow Wallpaper" - Charlotte Perkins Gilman
"Bartlby the Scrivener" - Herman Melville
"Bride Comes to Yellow Sky" - Stephen Crane
"A Pair of Silk Stockings" - Kate Chopin
"White Heron" - Sarah Orne Jewett
"Bernice Bobs Her Hair" = F. Scott Fitzgerald
"The Killers" - Ernest Hemmingway
"To Build A Fire" - Jack London
"An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" - Ambrose Bierce

And another year of Honors 10 English almost done....
Aug 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Demorei efetivamente um ano a percorrer esta coletânea de contos da literatura norte-americana, mas acabei, finalmente!
Contos que ficaram na memória:

"Bartleby" (Melville)
"A White Heron" (Jewett)
"An occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" (Ambrose Bierce)
"The egg" (Anderson)
"The Killers" (Hermingway)
Oct 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
wow! what fun! I'd only read two of these before. I've read more European short stories (British, French) than American so this was a good find and totally enjoyable. Sometimes, only a short story will do....
Apr 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2010
I picked this up when I want to get back to basics with my literature...critical reading...

I enjoyed all the different writers between these two covers...Hawhtorne, Melville, Hemingway, Fitzgerald, etc. It was neat to read their different styles one after another.
Ann Dowd
Jan 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Such a fun collection of stories! Thanks Devin Smith for putting it on your Beacon Hill reading list this year. It reminded me of how much I enjoyed short stories:) My book group of wonderful, reading ladies are coming tomorrow night to discuss it!
Feb 22, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Read some of the stories... The ones I read were very good!
not exactly a beach read but 6/25 of my authors for this project are in this book
Jan 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Great selection with which to decide which authors to add to your list
Chad Lamb
Feb 21, 2016 rated it liked it
I haven't read all the stories in it but several of them. My absolute favorite is "To Build a Fire" by Jack London. It's sad but so good. I've read it over and over and over again.
Amanda Berman
Sep 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book of short stories

Some of these stories were sad, and happy, and some creepy; but on the whole, this book was a delightful experience to read.
Jan 13, 2010 rated it liked it
Good collection of America's finest works. Short stories that are straight to the point. A good reflection of America's ideologies, the good and the bad.
Jun 18, 2007 rated it it was ok
we read some of these in school...
Dec 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
A fun collection of classic short stories.
Aug 18, 2010 rated it liked it
Lots of good stories. Almost all are depressing.(which is why it gets three stars) My favorite is the F. Scott Fitzgerald story; Bernice gets her hair bobbed. It made me happy.
Oct 29, 2016 rated it it was ok
This was an ok book how ever I do wish the author had done more to make it more interesting. I look forward to reading more of this author's work.
Mary Kaye
A lot of different styles -- some engaging, some tedious. All worth the time.
Feb 01, 2008 rated it really liked it
My favorite selection is Jack London's, To Build a Fire. Many great short stories. Excellent for bedtime reading, as you can get in good stories, and finish something!
Apr 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Gift from Darci. Was so much fun to read and made me proud of our American literary heritage.
Christine Harvey
Jan 20, 2017 rated it liked it
I know the editor ordered the short stories by date, but having 4 stories in a row in which the main character dies at the end was pretty depressing....
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John Tingle
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Dec 18, 2015
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