The Next Best Book Club discussion

TNBBC's Lists > Top Ten Short Stories

Comments Showing 1-40 of 40 (40 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Edmund (new)

Edmund Any more lovers of the 'classic' short story out there? To start the ball rolling here are mine.

A Good Man Is Hard to Find. Flannery O'Connor
The Blue Hotel. Stephen Crane
Hills Like White Elephants. Ernest Hemingway.
An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge. Ambrose Bierce
The Yellow Wall-Paper. Charlotte Perkins Gilman.
The Lottery.Shirley Jackson.
The Demon Lover. Elizabeth Bowen.
A Rose for Emily. William Faulkner
Guests of the Nation. Frank O'Connor and last but not least
The Cask of Amontillado. Edgar Allan Poe

message 2: by Sarenna (new)

Sarenna (djsthree) | 63 comments I remember reading The Lottery in high school (and that was many moons ago). Amazing how I still remember that story all these years later. The other one that really sticks with me is "Born of Man and Woman" by Richard Matheson.

Abigail (42stitches) | 360 comments Oh, This'll be fun! I'm a lover of short stories, so it will take me awhile to compile a good list...I'll be back!

Abigail (42stitches) | 360 comments Okay I've got a pretty good list going now. In no particular order, my favorite short stories:

1.The Fifty-ninth bear
Slyvia Plath
2.After Cowboy Chicken Came to Town
Ha Jin
3. Rug Weaver
Barbara Klein Moss
4.Imagine a day at the End of Your Life
Ann Beattie
5.A Different Kind of Imperfection
Thomas Beller
6.The Storm
Kate Chopin
7.The Story of an Hour
Kate Chopin
8. Every Tongue Shall Confess
Z.Z. Packer
9.Everything is Eventual
Stephen King
10.Mrs. Todd's Shortcut
Stephen King

message 5: by Edmund (new)

Edmund Tracked the Matheson story down on the internet - not bad.

message 6: by Laura (new)

Laura (laurita) The Very Old Man With Enormous WIngs (Garcia Marquez)
The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World (Garcia Marquez)
The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas (Ursula K Le Guin)
A Good Man Is Hard to Find (Flannery O'Connor)
The Open Boat (Stephen Crane)
Death and the Compass (Jorge Luis Borges)

message 7: by Vanessa (new)

Vanessa | 55 comments Here are a few that I really enjoyed:

April in Paris (Ursula K. le Guin
Coming of Age in Karhide (Ursula K. le Guin)
Down the River Road (Gregory Benford)
Father to Son (Italo Calvino)
The Adulterous Woman (Albert Camus)
Fix (Kevin Dolgin)
We're All Dying Here (Cynthia Hartwig)
Open It (Saadat Hasan Manto)
Love Must Never Be Forgotten (Zhang Jie)
A Visit from the Footbinder (Emily Prager)
The Mid-Life Crisis of Dionysis (Garrion Keilor)

message 8: by Vanessa (new)

Vanessa | 55 comments I forgot to add Diary of a Madman (Nikolai Gogol).

message 9: by Edmund (new)

Edmund Interesting list Abigail - I'll start to track them down.


message 10: by Edmund (new)

Edmund Thanks for your list Vanessa

message 11: by Isiah (last edited Oct 08, 2008 07:56AM) (new)

Isiah (volition) While I don't have 10 I'll list my favorites.

1. Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption - a novella but it's short enough for me (Stephen King)
2. Survivor Type (Stephen King)
3. The Jaunt (Stephen King)
4. Here There Be Tygers - I loved this 5 page story (Stephen King)
5. The Body (Stephen King) Notice a theme here? Again this is a novella but it's short. This is the story that is the basis for the movie Stand By Me, not many know that...

message 12: by Belinda (new)

Belinda Edgar Allan Poe's 'Cask of Amontillado'
Shirley Jackson's 'The Lottery'
David Foster Wallace's 'Incarnations of Burned Children'
Neil Gaiman's 'We Can Get Them for You Wholesale'
David Sedaris' 'Season's Greetings to Our Friends and Family!!!'

message 13: by Edmund (new)

Edmund I'm a big Stephen Crane fan and think the first line 'None of them knew the color of the sky' in his short story 'The Open Boat' is one of the best opening lines in literature.

message 14: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 49 comments Ooh, I love this thread! I'm a big short story fan. Some of my favorites short story writers are Raymond Carver, Tobias Wolff, T.C. Boyle. These are stories that have all stuck with me for one reason or another:

The Liar, Tobias Wolff
Strawberries, Abby Frucht
A Women's Restaurant, TC Boyle
The Achieve, The Mastery of the Thing, Laurie Colwin
What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, Raymond Carver
A Diamond as Big as the Ritz, F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Little Knife, Michael Chabon
Contents of the Faery Handbag, Kelly Link

I'm sure I'll add more as they pop into my head ...

message 15: by Edmund (new)

Edmund Looks like I started something - it's nice to know that there's others out there who like the short story format.


message 16: by Sarenna (new)

Sarenna (djsthree) | 63 comments I loved "SantaLand Diaries" by David Sedaris.

Abigail (42stitches) | 360 comments I noticed mine aren't exactly "classic" after rereading the thread, but it's all good stuff. I see a few new ones that I'm interested in checking out now too.
I <3 short stories.

message 18: by Marsha (new)

Marsha Is there any interest here in a short story of the month? That is something I have done in another group, but I'd love to downsize my GR time and TNBBC is definitely my favorite group! Great people here.

What do you think Lori? I think we have a starter list right here. I haven't read many of these.

Abigail (42stitches) | 360 comments I'd be up for that! I haven't managed to get into the one for my other book club. Always seem to be missing the deadline because I'm always at TNBBC! Or I haven't bothered to find them online. OOps...maybe I'll go do that now...

message 20: by Jeanie (new)

Jeanie I see a number of my favorites listed - all of TC Boyle, The Lottery,everything by Flannery O'Connor.

Not listed above, but othter favorites:

The Things They Carried - Tim O'Brien
Orientation - Daniel Orozco

Almost all of Dorothy Parker, including Big Blonde and Bolt from the Blue

Great thread!

message 21: by Karey (new)

Karey (kareyshane) | 17 comments I see a lot of my favorites here, as well, but I'd like to add The Awakening, by Kate Chopin. The Lottery is another.

JG (Introverted Reader) My husband and I were in a big wine cellar in Italy with all these big wine barrels around and I had a "Cask of Amontillado" moment and had to scramble out of there!

I love Dorothy Parker, Jeanie!

All of you Stephen King fans: Do his short stories scare you more than his novels? They scare me to death. I think it's because so much is left up to your imagination that I wind up scaring myself.

Another more classic story I love is "The Birds" by Daphne duMaurier. It spooked me!

message 23: by Dorie (last edited Oct 14, 2008 09:08PM) (new)

Dorie (dorieann) | 430 comments I love short stories, too. But most of mine have been contemporary: Michael Chabon, Adam Haslett, Roddy Doyle, and whatever I can download from The New Yorker web site. I am in the middle of reading "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" by F. Scott Fitzgerald on my PDA. Although at 9,000+ words I don't know if it is considered a short story or a novella.

Marsha, I think that is a great idea and I would love to have a short story of the month! It would help me catch up on some of the classics.

message 24: by [deleted user] (new)

Some great stories, off the top of my head:

"The Swimmer", John Cheever
"A Rose For Emily", William Faulkner
"Death in the Woods", Sherwood Anderson
"The Lottery", Shirley Jackson
"The Reach", Stephen King
"The Things They Carried", Tim O'Brien
"A Good Man is Hard To Find", Flannery O'Conner
"Young Goodman Brown", Nathanial Hawthorne
"The Dead", James Joyce
"William Wilson", E.A. Poe
"Lost in the Funhouse", John Barth
"Never Marry a Mexican", Sandra Cisneros

message 25: by [deleted user] (new)

How could I forget "Sonny's Blues", James Baldwin? Just a great story.

message 26: by Emma (new)

Emma Some of my favourites:

The Bet - Chekov
The Very Old Man With Enormous WIngs - Garcia Marquez
The Fall of the House of Usher - Poe
Signs and Symbols - Nobokov
Brothers and Sisters Around the World - Andrea Lee
The Machine Stops - Forester
Dance in America - Lorrie Moore
The Gospel According to Mark - Borgess
An Outpost of Progress - Conrad
My Heart is Broken - Mavis Gallant

message 27: by rebecca j (new)

rebecca j (technophobe) | 6029 comments The Tell-Tale Heart
The Lottery
A Womanly Talent and No One Noticed the Cat by Anne McCaffrey
The Damcat by Clare Bell
Skitty by Mercedes Lackey
The Gift of the Magi
The Cask of Amontillado
and one by Stephen King that I can't remember the title of - but it was about what happens when the Mob runs a stop-smoking clinic!

message 28: by Eric (new)

Eric | 382 comments I really have enjoy most of Stephen Kings short stories. In fact, I like them more than any of his full length novels. I don't feel the need to keep most of his novels, but could never part with his short story collections. One of my favorites is "The Mist". I read it along time ago and loved it. I really got all excited when the movie for it came out; too bad it was such a let down.

message 29: by Ari (new)

Ari (aricl) | 54 comments Some favourites, off the top of my head, in no particular order:

- The Night Face Up (La noche boca arriba), by Julio Cortázar (found in English in Blow-Up: And Other Stories

- The Hitchhiking Game, by Milan Kundera (found in Laughable Loves)

- Story of the Young Man with the Cream Tarts, by RL Stevenson (found in The Suicide Club)

- Sredni Vashtar, by Saki

- La cucaracha soñadora, by Augusto Monterroso (found in Obras Completas Y Otros Cuentos/complete Works And Other Stories; it's a retelling of Kafka's metamorphosis)

message 30: by Jeane (new)

Jeane | 4891 comments I read some good once but, even if i don't know why and from where it comes, I have a negative image about short stories. I know it isn't true but when I pick up a book and see that it are short stories, msot of the time I put it back. Don't know why, I always think they won't be good.

message 31: by Charity (last edited Jul 15, 2010 11:26AM) (new)

Charity (charityross) I don't read a ton of short stories, but here are a few faves:

* "The Lottery" by Shirley Jackson

* "The Pit and the Pendulum" by Edgar Allan Poe

* "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County" by Mark Twain

* "I Stand Here Ironing" by Tillie Olsen

* "A Good Man is Hard to Find" by Flannery O'Connor

and too many to name from Joyce Carol Oates.

Abigail (42stitches) | 360 comments Ann Beattie is my all time favorite for contemporary short stories. I've read almost everything she's written and the novels are good, but the short stories are always great.

message 33: by [deleted user] (new)

My favorite short story collections are:

Ficciones, Jorge Luis Borges
Woman Hollering Creek, Sandra Cisneros

message 34: by Jane (new)

Jane Yes Jesse! Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin! A story everyone should read. Others that have stuck with me:

"In Dreams Begin Responsibilities" by Delmore Schwartz is my all time favorite.
"The School" by Donald Barthleme
"A Mother's Tale," by James Agee
"Toga Party," by John Barth
"Wait," by Roy Kesey
"The Death of Mustango Salvaje," by Anders Nilsen
"Free Burgers for Life," by Ryan Boudinot

These aren't classic, but more recent, still really good though. Now I have a pile of books lying next to me on my bed.

I would be game for a short story of the month read. Something like that would be easier to keep up with. :)

Abigail (42stitches) | 360 comments I had forgotten that Virginia Woolf wrote short stories too. I'm working through A Haunted House right now, it's interesting if nothing else. Some of thew stories are experimental and a little strange, but others are really good. My favorite is A Mark on the Wall, which I realize I read somewhere a long time ago. Still made me laugh again though!

Jamie (The Perpetual Page-Turner) (perpetualpageturner) | 636 comments I just read The October Country by Ray Bradbury..good collection of short stories..some work and some don't..but the ones that do..are AMAZING!

message 37: by A.J. (new)

A.J. Big Two-Hearted River -- Hemingway
Rock Springs -- Richard Ford
Ward No. 6 - Chekhov
Fables of the Deconstruction -- Mark Jarman
The Dead -- Joyce
The Box Social -- James Reaney

JG (Introverted Reader) Charity, what was "I Stand Here Ironing" about? I read your post and thought, "Ooh, that is a good one!" and then realized that I don't remember anything else about it.

message 39: by Jennie (new)

Jennie | 49 comments Jeannie, I love "The Things They Carried", too! Another favorite of mine from that collection is the one about the guy who smuggles his girlfriend into Vietnam. I think it's called "The Sweetheart of The Song Tra Bong".

Count me in for a short story of the month thread.

message 40: by Jimmy (last edited Jul 15, 2010 11:18AM) (new)

Jimmy (jimmylorunning) Cool thread! Hope y'all won't mind if I revive it.

Without repeating authors (otherwise all 10 would be Chekhov stories) and in no order:

"The Dead" by James Joyce
"Enemies" by Anton Chekhov
"You Must Know Everything" by Isaac Babel
"The Country Doctor" by Ivan Turgenev
"Axolotl" by Julio Cortazar
"The Marquise of O..." by Heinrich Von Kleist
"In Dreams Begin Responsibilities" by Delmore Schwartz
"Kleist in Thun" by Robert Walser
"Nevsky Prospect" by Nikolai Gogol
"Three Versions of Judas" by Jorge Luis Borges

back to top