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The Complete Stories

4.40  ·  Rating details ·  36,689 ratings  ·  1,811 reviews
This is the original cover edition of ISBN: 0374515360 (ISBN13: 9780374515362

Winner of the National Book Award

The publication of this extraordinary volume firmly established Flannery O'Connor's monumental contribution to American fiction. There are thirty-one stories here in all, including twelve that do not appear in the only two story collections O'Connor put together in
Paperback, FSG Classics, 555 pages
Published 1971 by Farrar, Straus & Giroux (first published 1955)
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Rui It's not really a question, but thank you for sharing these quotes. I think they are quite representative of the introverted perfectionist O'Conner wa…moreIt's not really a question, but thank you for sharing these quotes. I think they are quite representative of the introverted perfectionist O'Conner was. She did not write to please the reader, or to gain recognition (like many of the characters in her stories). She dedicated her life perfecting little by little the art of translating human nature onto paper. To me, each story feels like a punch in the stomach, and reading through this complete collection feels like getting punched repeatedly. But somehow I'm loving it, and I want to keep reading.(less)
Vassilis Vassilas Of course she was a racist. She was a white woman from the south that depicted her society and purposely chose to write some stories about black peopl…moreOf course she was a racist. She was a white woman from the south that depicted her society and purposely chose to write some stories about black people and how they were considered by white people. Are you telling me that the KKK reading this today would not feel a sense of pride at her writings and how she caught the inner sense of nig...s? And don't tell me it's art!! I find it curious that when we consider WD Griffith's Birth of a Nation or the Nazi propaganda film Triumph of the Will we look at them as innovations in film but condemn them as racist but with this author we praise her prose and give book awards??!!(less)

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i have decided to become a genius.

to accomplish this, i'm going to work my way through the complete stories of various authors, reading + reviewing 1 story every day until i get bored / lose every single follower / am struck down by a vengeful deity.


it must be a real nightmare to be an old racist white guy. imagine what an unpleasant experience having that brain would be.
good story though. go off, flannery.
(anyone also who c
Vit Babenco
Mar 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Strange may it seem but I’ve never read anything about Flannery O’Connor and I didn’t know what I should expect so the book was like a lightning strike.
She saw the streak as a vast swinging bridge extending upward from the earth through a field of living fire. Upon it a vast horde of souls were rumbling toward heaven. There were whole companies of whitetrash, clean for the first time in their lives, and bands of black niggers in white robes, and battalions of freaks and lunatics shouting and cla
Jun 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
- Lennon & McCartney

- T.S. Eliot

Flannery O’Connor is a Wall. And she’s each Brick in that Wall - hard-edged; uncompromising; and made out of unyielding, obdurate Faith.

She’s not a “Nice” Writer.

Nor is she trying to be. Cause she’s trying to give us the Straight Goods.

No, she’s not living the Dream. She’s living the REALITY.

And yes, we all hav
The stories in this collection were written by an unassuming yet serious Catholic woman from Georgia who, after devoting her short life to writing, died of lupus in 1964. Besides the stories, she had written two novels and started a third; one can only speculate what other masterpieces she would have written had she lived longer.

The stories are hard-bitten, bizarre and haunting. Two that I read years ago in college have stuck with me and are just as jarring today as they were then. O'Connor's th
I feel like I've just been to school. (That's a good thing.) I read each of these 31 stories - a compilation of both A Good Man is Hard to Find and Other Stories and Everything That Rises Must Converge: Stories, as well as 12 other stories, 6 of which made up her master's thesis at the University of Iowa - slowly, only a few a day. I took notes as I was going and read as much analysis as I could on each story. What an experience, to immerse myself in this author's life work.

It's a dark place to
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Complete Works = The complete stories, Flannery O'Connor

The Complete Stories is a collection of short stories by Flannery O'Connor. It was published in 1971. It comprises all the stories in A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Everything That Rises Must Converge plus several previously unavailable stories.

The Geranium
The Barber
The Crop
The Turkey
The Train
The Peeler
The Heart of the Park
A Stroke of Good Fortune
Enoch and the Gorilla
A Good Man Is Hard to Find
A Late Encounter with the En
Joe Valdez
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
In February 1948, Flannery O'Connor, a graduate of the MFA program at the University of Iowa, was twenty-three years old and eager to please the publishing industry with the beginning chapters of a novel-in-progress titled Wise Blood. A letter O'Connor received from one such publisher was not receptive. He commended her for being a straight-shooter and added that she was gifted, but with a loneliness in her work, as if she were writing simply out of her own experience.

O'Connor responded to a fr
In The Geranium, Old Dudley is the proverbial fish-out-of-water, overwhelmed by his environment, regretting his choice to trade familiar small town for a chance to see the Big Apple. To escape the constant onslaught on his senses, he’s fixated on the daily regimen of a neighbor’s geranium, the closest thing to nature, i.e., ‘back home’ he’s found. But in a twist comparable to the best of O’Henry, Dudley’s prejudice is revealed by unwelcome kindness from an ‘enemy’ and animosity comes to him from ...more
"Listen here," he hissed, "I don't care if he's good or not. He ain't right!
A Stroke of Good Fortune. The Life You Save May Be Your Own. The River. The Displaced Person. A View of the Woods. The Lame Shall Enter First. Two of these are contained within Everything That Rises Must Converge. A Good Man is Hard to Find and Other Stories has the other four. Neither one would have done as much good in my estimation as the works in toto. Key word my.

Flannery O'Connor was an author whose name seeped
May 12, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Since I won't be reading this collection straight through, I figured I'd rate the first 15 stories that I have read. Except for one here or there in anthologies, this is my first time reading her short stories and I can't believe it took me this long to get to her. They are amazingly good.
April 29, 2009


April 3, 2016

Now I can't believe it took me seven years to get back to this volume, except for recognizing that O'Connor's unflinching worldview isn't always a lure and, of course, the main excu
Jun 12, 2019 rated it liked it
I have just finished the book unfortunately with a lot of effort, many years ago I had already read some of these stories and I liked them very much.....
I don’t remember them being so gloomy, totally violent where men drown in their grief, totally enveloped in their circumstances of daily tragedies...
I have read many articles on Flannery O'Connor, and I understand and I see the question "God is for the violent too" but in a Catholic perspective, here everything is hopeless, confused....
the souls
Mar 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?

I can't imagine what it would have been like to live inside Mary Flannery O'Connor's head, obviously. But I am damned sure it can't have been agreeable. Her world is peopled with monsters. Damaged, limbs severed. Afflicted. Not whole. Children like evil spirits that descend on the sanctimonious. Parents that neglect, or beat their children. Bigots. The cruel and the feckless and the randomly murderous. Their names are monstrous too. Mr
May 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I wish I could write much better reviews my friends!!
Because Flannery O'Connor and his short-stories collection deserved it indeed very much..

And I also wish that she would have lived much longer..
She died 1962 from lupus at the age of 39 in Georgia!!

One of the most promising young American authors ever!!!
For O'Connor no subject was of limit!!!

Flannery O'Connor was a southern gothic writer and a master of the grotesque!!
Although she wrote two novels, she is best known for her short-stories colle
Jun 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Flannery O'Connor is not kind to her characters. Although every character was unlikable I still thought they were interesting. I loved this collection immensely. I was in awe reading every story and more often than not, the endings made my jaw drop which is a shock since I'm a cynical reader who is hard to please. I found these stories amusing, grotesque, macabre, and suprising in every conceivable way. As a fellow from Georgia, it made my heart leap to read such an imaginative and stellar write ...more
Jenny (Reading Envy)
One of my 2014 reading goals was to read Flannery O'Connor. It got to be Christmas 2014 and I hadn't touched her, so I have binge read all of her stories in just a few days.

It might not be the best way to do it, but some of the repeated events and themes - death, guilt, resistance to chance, issues with religion - start to become comical when repeated at such rapid frequency.

And laughter is appropriate. Flannery O'Connor is not afraid of humor, evidenced by one of the only surviving recordings o
This is one of O'Connor's first short stories, originally published in 1948, and used again in her acclaimed collection "The Complete Stories", published in 1971. ...more
E. G.
Introduction, by Robert Giroux

--The Geranium
--The Barber
--The Crop
--The Turkey
--The Train
--The Peeler
--The Heart of the Park
--A Stroke of Good Fortune
--Enoch and the Gorilla
--A Good Man Is Hard to Find
--A Late Encounter with the Enemy
--The Life You Save May Be Your Own
--The River
--A Circle in the Fire
--The Displaced Person
--A Temple of the Holy Ghost
--The Artificial Nigger
--Good Country People
--You Can't Be Any Poorer Than Dead
--A View of the Woods
--The Enduring Chill
--The Co
Kiran Bhat
Aug 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant, just brilliant. Once again, I'll have to write a lengthier review later, but I will say this. O'Connor does not aspire to be a writer of character. Each of her stories is an exercise in the limits of symbols, and how far they can drive a story. She often succeeds. Her stories will haunt your imagination years after you read them, and no matter how far you are from rural Georgia, you will always feel a part of yourself stuck in her world. ...more
Erik F.
Jul 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
An unforgettable collection of hard-hitting, caustically humorous and unrelentingly cynical stories from perhaps the strongest female voice in Southern U.S. fiction. O’Connor turns her merciless eye on religious hypocrisy, class consciousness, racism, gender roles, familial relationships, and other fertile topics, plowing them for the ugly truths they reveal about the general nature of humankind. Spending time with her characters (all of whom are depressive, delusional, misanthropic, criminal, p ...more
Dec 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
You know the cliché saying, "the moral of the story is..." Flannery O'Connor's stories all seem illustrative of this saying--in a good way. She has a way of using disgruntled characters to showcase social issues of her time. Once you get past the slurs (in most cases the n-word for me) to really read the story and see that she uses such care to highlight realism in her somewhat mystical fiction, so that you get to see the ignorance and shortcomings of her characters, you get it. How she could ha ...more
Bam cooks the books ;-)
Flannery O'Conner (1925-1964) earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in 1947 from the University of Iowa, having attended the well-known writer's workshop at that institution. The first six stories in this volume were submitted as her thesis for her degree under the title 'The Geranium: A Collection of Short Stories.' There are thirty-one stories included here, twelve of which were appearing for the first time in book form, and this collection was published posthumously, winning the National Book A ...more
Tom Mathews
Flannery O’connor is an acquired taste. Her tales may not tell a linear story in the commonly accepted sense but her insightful portrayals of quirky characters are unforgettable. 4 1/5 stars.
Ronald Morton
Apr 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I'm trying to get out of my comfort zone this year, and that includes reading some short story collections (which I tend to not be crazy about), and in doing so I'm trying to hit some of the best practitioners (critically) of the form.

My biggest complaint about this collection is including O'Connor's early (unpublished before this collection) stuff up front. It makes sense chronologically, but they're weaker than the rest of the collection, and I would have rather read them last (but I'm OCD and
Apr 28, 2008 rated it liked it
Before I begin, let me say this: by no means is Flannery O'Conner a bad writer. She knows her quite very well. But there is a major beef I have with her stories: the repetition. Of course, some stories a true gems ("A Good man is Hard to Find", "The River"), but after making my way through about a third of the stories, the same themes started reappearing with the same type of deffiecent characters and the same kinds of endings.

That is not to say they aren't enjoyable. I laughed along with some g
Apr 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
Flannery O'Connor had a lot to be unhappy about. Dying of lupus in backwater Georgia. Or before that, being too-smart and too-ugly growing up in a time when Southern women were supposed to be seen and not heard. Or moving up North and feeling homesick for a place she spent most of her life hating and trying to escape, and them coming back sick and over-educated and feeling more out of place than ever. That stuff would have been hard enough to deal with in itself, but if you're also deeply religi ...more
Dec 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"[...] I'm the victim. I've always been the victim." ("Greenleaf")
Here's the thing: I didn't actually enjoy reading Flannery O'Connor's complete collection of short stories. O'Connor's characters are frustrated, angry, resistant to change, religiously devoted to their customs. Her writing is sparse, full of jolting similes and matter-of-fact dialogue. It's cruel and decisive. It's like quicksand, coming up from under to suffocate you.
He wondered if she walked at night and came there ever—came w
Oct 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
O’Connor won the National Book Award posthumously in 1971 for this compilation of thirty-one of her short stories. O’Connor is known for her stories set in the 1930’s through 1950’s, often in small towns in Georgia where she was born and a few take place in the big city. In her stories she did not shy away from her frequent and casual use of the n-word for which she took a lot of criticism. She often depicts her characters as poor and in most cases ignorant people. Interestingly very few of her ...more
May 08, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Southern Lit Fans
Recommended to Tyler by: Southern Lit Fans
Shelves: literature
How would you feel if you emptied your garbage can on the floor, searching through the contents for a valuable you were sure was lost there, only to end up with muck on your hands? That's how I felt after reading a collection of the author's short stories.

With a few adjustments for technology and history, the characters depicted in story after story are mostly ordinary, modern Americans. In fact, the author's benighted rookery of dim-wits and out-and-out idiots finds its voice today thoughout th
Alexa Vaughn
Jan 28, 2008 rated it really liked it
Every one of these stories leaves its main character in a complete sense of doom, but there's more to it than that. There's a spiritual revelation or rebirth in the midst the character's painful stupor. What I love about these endings is that as painful as that character's state of mind is at the end, they're also seeing things more clearly and truthfully than they ever have in their life--and it's undeniably beautiful, no matter how painful the situation happens to be. And boy does she know how ...more
I have always found it more difficult to review a short-story collection than a novel. With a novel there are going to be characteristics that you like and don’t like, but ultimately you try to take those into account in developing an overall assessment of the work. A novel is begging to be assessed on its overall impact, not based on its individual pieces and parts. A short-story collection, though, is typically a collection of independent pieces that were likely written in isolation of each ot ...more
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Flannery O'Connor was born in Savannah, Georgia, in 1925. When she died at the age of thirty-nine, America lost one of its most gifted writers at the height of her powers. O’Connor wrote two novels, Wise Blood (1952) and The Violent Bear It Away (1960), and two story collections, A Good Man Is Hard to Find (1955) and Everything That Rises Must Converge (1964). Her Complete Stories, published posth ...more

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