The Best Short Story Collections of all time
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I could only muster up 58 volumes (could've come up with more had I used the same author's work more than once, which I arbitrarily chose not to). These aren't listed in any particular order, just jotted them down as they occurred to me. Anyone interested in adding to this list and help make it the top 100 short story collections of all time?
…Our Story Begins, Tobias Wolff
…Winner Take Nothing, Ernest Hemingway
…The Complete Short Stories, Guy De Maupassant
…The Short Stories, Anton Chekov
…A Good Man Is Hard To Find, Flannery O’Connor
…Interpreter Of Maladies, Jhumpa Lahiri
…Fierce, Hannah Holborn
…The Stories, John Cheever
…Oblivion, David Foster Wallace
…The Safety Of Objects, A.M. Homes
…The Complete Tales, Edgar Allan Poe
…Lost In The Funhouse, John Barth
…Pricksongs & Descants, Robert Coover
…Sixty Stories, Donald Barthelme
…In The Heart Of The Heart Of The Country, William H. Gass
…Cathedral, Raymond Carver
…Nine Stories, J.D. Salinger
…At The Mountains of Madness, H.P. Lovecraft
…The Collected Stories, Katharine Anne Porter
…Dubliners, James Joyce
…Labyrinths, Jorge Luis Borges
…The Collected Stories, Eudora Welty
…Close Range: Wyoming Stories, Annie Proulx
…The Little Disturbances of Man, Grace Paley
…The Metamorphosis & other stories, Franz Kafka
…Moral Disorder: Stories, Margaret Atwood
…Greasy Lake, T.C. Boyle
…Pastoralia, George Saunders
…The Girl In The Flammable Skirt, Aimee Bender
…Winesburg, Ohio, Sherwood Anderson
…Death In Venice & other stories, Thomas Mann
…The Complete Butcher’s Tales, Rikki DuCornet
…The Lottery & other stories, Shirley Jackson
…How We Are Hungry, David Eggers
…Collected Stories, John O’Hara
…Selected Stories, Alice Munro
…The Collected Stories, Arthur C. Clarke
…The Martian Chronicles, Ray Bradbury
…Night Shift, Stephen King
…Nightfall & other stories, Isaac Asimov
…Bloodchild & other stories, Octavia E. Butler
…The Collection, Bentley Little
…Books Of Blood, Clive Barker
…100 Jolts: Shockingly Short Stories, Michael Arnzen
…Starwater Strains, Gene Wolfe
…Collected Stories, William Faulkner
…The Turn Of The Screw & other stories, Henry James
…Goodbye, Columbus, Phillip Roth
…Tales & Sketches, Nathaniel Hawthorne
…The Collected Stories, William Trevor
…The Collected Stories, Isaac Bashevis Singer
…The Awakening & Selected Short Fiction, Kate Chopin
…The Collected Stories, Katharine Mansfield
…The Sea Birds Are Still Alive: Stories, Toni Cade Bambara
…The Troll Garden, Willa Cather
…First Snow On Fuji, Yasunari Kawabata
…Death in Midsummer & other Stories,Yukio Mishima
…Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman, Haruki Murakami
Cabbages and Kings
The Four Million
both collections of O. Henry stories. I don't believe either has "The Ransom of Red Chief" in it, but there's still plenty of heart in these collections.
Selected Stories of Bret Harte
Both are favorites of mine, introduced to me by my parents long ago.
Based on doing some tagmashes, I would include:
Winesburg, Ohio of Sherwood Anderson
Exile and the Kingdom of Albert Camus
Delta of Venus by Anais Nin
The Wall: and other stories by Jean-Paul Sartre
The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio
Cosmicomics of Italo Calvino
The Periodic Table of Primo Levi
Do they have to be by one author? If not, I would recommend the Black Water anthologies by Alberto Manguel.
Excellent everyone! By my count we're now up to 79 volumes. There's no rules, makifat, whatever you want to add feel free. I had set an arbitrary limitation on myself in order not to focus on my own personal favorite authors. I could've easily listed every collection of short stories ever published by Stephen King, but instead limited myself to what I believe to be his finest, Night Shift.
Here are five from my library:I have over 35 collections, I think.
W. Somerset Maugham: Complete Short Stories in 3 Volumes.
Noel Coward: The Complete Stories
D H Lawrence: The Collected Stories
P. G. Woodhouse: Jeeves Short Stories
Rudyard Kipling: Humorous Tales
Wonderful list & additions--and many thanks for adding Fierce, Lola! Some collections I'm passionate about are:
Some Rain Must Fall by Michel Faber
St. Lucy's School for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russel
Silent Girl by my good friend Tricia Dower
Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures by Vincent Lam
I see a number of really award-winning and significant anthologies by women not yet included.
Ursula Le Guin has a couple that should make the list. I would include:
* Buffalo Gals and Other Animal Presences
* The Compass Rose
* The Wind's Twelve Quarters
although Le Guin has several others, including recently, that are excellent.
James Tiptree Jr. is regarded as a short story master. I would include:
* Her Smoke Rose Up Forever - John Clute described it as "one of the two or three most significant collections of short science fiction ever published."
Other Tiptree anthologies include:
* Ten Thousand Light-Years from Home
* Warm Worlds and Otherwise
* Star Songs of an Old Primate
Angela Carter should certainly be included. I would be hard-pressed to choose between:
* The Bloody Chamber
* Burning Your Boats (this isn't one of her original works, but a "the collected short stories" collection)
* Saints and Strangers
* Heroes and Villains
Octavia Butler's Bloodchild and Other Stories is an amazing collection of her short work.
* The Country of the Pointed Firs and Other Stories by Sarah Orne Jewett
* The Woman Who Loved The Moon by Elizabeth A. Lynn
... There are also a variety of collections of related stories, such as Fritz Leiber's Fafhrd & the Grey Mouser stories, Ursula K. Le Guin's Four Ways to Forgiveness; Jewel Gomez's The Gilda Stories; Sylvia Townsend Warner's Kingdoms of Elfin.
... It seems like most of the entries here are single-author collections; however, there are some anthologies. Probably worth clarifying.
... Finally, I also wonder whether it would be better to specify "original collections" otherwise, how could one avoid simply including "complete collection of..." books of major short story writers? (By "original collections" I mean those arranged by the author, as opposed to publishers' "Best of..." or "Complete Short Stories of ..." volumes. I do not mean to distinguish between collections of previously unpublished ("original") work and collections of previously published works.
Deathbird Stories by Harlan Ellison
Slow Learner by Thomas Pynchon
Welcome To The Monkey House by Kurt Vonnegut
Music For Chameleons by Truman Capote
Stories Of Your Life And Others by Ted Chiang
Pump Six And Other Stories by Paolo Bacigalupi
Tales For The Long Rains by Kij Johnson
Revenge Of The Lawn by Richard Brautigan
No Place Like: Selcted Stories by Nadine Gordimer
Came back to make sure Katharine Mansfield is on the list - yup, there she is. :)
One of the few things that I believed in the mid 1960's that I still believe today is that the greatest collection of short stories ever written by a single author is Bernard Malamud's The Magic Barrel. It exhibits one of our greatest writer's at the height of his powers.
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