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Selected Stories

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  96 ratings  ·  17 reviews
Although he is best known for his exquisite novels, E.M. Forster also wrote remarkable short stories. He referred to his stories as ‘fantasies’ and his attraction to myth and magic is apparent in many of them. Like his novels, the stories – whether they are set in Italy, Greece, India, and other places Forster visited, or in England itself – contrast the freedom of paganis ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published March 29th 2001 by Penguin Classics (first published January 1st 2001)
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Sep 01, 2008 rated it really liked it
The selected shorts here include Forster's fantasies, which, at least according to the forward, he didn't seem to think as serious as his novels. But they're just as worthy a read. There's a playful feel to these, which vary in genre from sci-fi to standard literature. But the theme that runs through all of them is this idea of living, of how we live or, more often, don't live.
In The Celestial Bus, in which I couldn't help envisioning Harry Potter and the Dudley's, there's the not-new idea that
It might be because I just read hundreds of pages of pulpy, early 20th-century sci-fi shorts, but Forster's collection strikes me as masterful. His characterizations are consistently strong and artful, and his themes of humanism, the loss of nature and artistic creativity are both stirring and sorrowful. The writing itself is clear yet lyrical, and a higher competence radiates through every line.

Perhaps the greatest feature of these stories is their ambiguity, something I hadn't fully realized
Feb 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

The last book I read from E.M. Forster was Howards End (highly recommended) so that's the sort of thing I was prepared for here.

As you would expect from Forster, the action arises naturally and inevitably from well-drawn characters, there is subtlety, intensity and emotional truth but there was also a big surprise in the range of the stories -- from pagan fantasies to allegories and science fiction!

Many of the stories, scenes and characters have stayed with me and I often think about t
Apr 21, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The short stories that Forster did allow to be published in his lifetime. Many are what he described as fantasies and have touches of the frequently pagan and otherworldly about them, some take Christianity as their starting point the more so to criticise the rigidity and pomposity of their Edwardian believers and one is,rather surprisingly, a very effective essay in science fiction and worthy of Wells and Huxley. Forster is always at his best wielding his scalpel knife in pricking the stuffines ...more
Jul 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: fans of wit and the fantastical
Recommended to Kimber by: Karen Massie
I loved this so much that I almost stole it from my British Literature class in high school. I should have. Celestial Omnibus was my particular favorite.
Jan 05, 2009 rated it liked it
Edward Morgan Forster (January 1st, 1879 – June 7th, 1970) is best known for novels like “A Room with a View”, “Howards End”, and “A Passage to India”. For a different side of Forster, one can look at his shorter works, and “Selected Stories” contains the short fiction of Forster’s which was published in his lifetime. It differs greatly from his novels, as most of the stories contain fantasy elements, and one could easily stand as a foundation of science fiction. At the same time, these works ar ...more
Jul 12, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
3.25 stars.
"It is a mere waste of time to reply to such remarks, especially when they come from an unsuccessful artist suffering from a damaged finger" (10).
"...and beneath it the earth had risen grandly into hills--clean, bare, buttresses, with beech trees in their folds, and meadows and clear pools at their feet" (25).
"But at the present moment the whole road looked rather pretty, for the sun had just set in splendour, and the inequalities of rent were drowned in a saffron afterglow" (31).
Daren Kearl
Apr 07, 2012 rated it liked it
A mixed bag. I particularly enjoyed The Story of a Panic, with its possession by Pan and the incompatibility of modern day to rural mysticism; the Machine Stops, which still has resonance with today and the gradual isolation of the individual and shutting off from the real world via the virtual and the Internet; and the Eternal Moment, examining the impact of tourism on a rural village and the stamp of "progress" setting son against mother.
Oct 24, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Suggestions for Further Reading
A Note on the Text

--The Story of a Panic
--The Other Side of the Hedge
--The Celestial Omnibus
--Other Kingdom
--The Curate's Friend
--The Road from Colonus
--The Machine Stops
--The Point of It
--Mr Andrews
--The Story of the Siren
--The Eternal Moment

Explanatory Notes
Aug 27, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
a room with a view is one of my favorite books of all time so i thought i'd give some short stories by the same author a try. they were quite a diverse group. the most surprising one had a futuristic slant, people living under the earth. i had no idea! forster does the future?!? in keeping with his era, the writing was dense and took some concentration but in the end, i'm glad i made the effort.
Sep 11, 2009 rated it did not like it
You know when you feel like you've been reading for an eternity and then you look at the page number and realize you're on page 6? Well, if you didn't before, you will if you read this.
Vikas Datta
Sep 21, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quite engrossing actually and fully display the ability of a first-rate writer
Jul 11, 2016 rated it liked it
Tyler Talbott
Dec 15, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: short-fiction
An uneven and experimental collection with several standouts and typically great writing from someone who is almost exclusively considered as a novelist.
Nov 21, 2011 rated it liked it
Surprising stories in the vein of H.G. Wells and our modern day Joann Harris. Loved "The Machine Stops".
Jan 13, 2013 rated it liked it
love "The Celestial Omnibus"
Roma Panganiban
Jun 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: summer-2011, 2011
Should be 3 1/2 stars. When it was good, it was very, very good, but when it was bad it was horrid.
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Edward Morgan Forster, generally published as E.M. Forster, was an novelist, essayist, and short story writer. He is known best for his ironic and well-plotted novels examining class difference and hypocrisy in early 20th-century British society. His humanistic impulse toward understanding and sympathy may be aptly summed up in the epigraph to his 1910 novel Howards End: "Only connect".

He had five