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Keepsakes & Other Stories

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  54 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Once Upon A Time, before Atheneum in New York took a chance on an unknown author and published Staggerford (1977), Jon Hassler wrote a number of short stories that introduce many of the characters in his later novels. Only a handful of these stories had appeared in print (mostly in small literary magazines) until we published our best-selling Keepsakes and Other Stories.
Paperback, 120 pages
Published October 1st 1999 by Minnesota Historical Society Press (first published 1999)
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Sep 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Jon Hassler (1933-2008) is among several writers from the Midwest who are not big names nationally and usually fall below the radar in discussions about 20th century American literature. Bill Holm, Carol Bly, and J.F. Powers are other names that come to mind. Hassler and Powers have similarities in their backgrounds and in their subject matter. Both taught at St. John’s University in Minnesota. They both explored life in Upper Midwest cities in their novels and short stories, and their characte ...more
Derek Emerson
Nov 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012-books-read
Jon Hassler is a deceptively simple writer. One can read his stories as quaint tales of a forgotten time, but just as you settle in he quietly drops in a plot twist or unexpected story. His novel, Staggerford, is an excellent introduction to his uncanny ability to create character driven stories with plot driven diversions.

The book, Keepsakes and Other Stories, shows his range of interests and writing talents. The book itself is interested, being published in 1999 by the Afton Historical Society
Jun 14, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: short-stories
This collection contains early stories from one of my favorite Minnesota authors. There’s not much to these stories, and there are only seven of them. Two stories really stood out for me:

Good News in Culver Bend, in which two journalists, one young and one old, search for a Christmas story in a small town, and

Yesterday’s Garbage, in which a garbologist becomes a little too involved with a neighbor (and her garbage).

As for the other stories, they are pretty short and not very memorable. I pre
Jan 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Now THIS is the Jon Hassler I know and love! This collection is of some of Hassler’s earlier short stories. I enjoyed his earlier novels ("Staggerford," "A Green Journey," "Grand Opening") but he seemed to get a bit crabby in his later works. I’ve always thought of Jon as the anti-Keillor, capturing the quaintness of small town Minnesota life, but also the shadier, earthier side of things. And the guy could be funny. A great read for the Hassler lover and those that want to check him out.
Aug 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful little book of short stories. Liked it so much I bought on my Nook.
Sweet, unpretentious, lyrical. Read it in one evening. It's short; only seven stories in the volume but I understand the characters are all used in his later novels.
Mar 30, 2015 rated it liked it
Overall a very nice read. "Keepsakes," "Chase," and "Christopher, Moony, and the Birds" were the strongest in the collection. I'm not sure how much these stories would resonate with people outside the Midwestern United States, however.
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Aug 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Love Hassler.
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Jon Hassler was born in Minneapolis, but spent his formative years in the small Minnesota towns of Staples and Plainview, where he graduated from high school. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English from St. John's University in 1955. While teaching English at three different Minnesota high schools, he received his Master of Arts degree in English from the University of North Dakota in ...more
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