Book Title: Short Story Masterpieces by American Women Writers
Publisher: Dover Publications
Editor: Clarence C. Strowbridge
Release Date: Feb. 20th 2014
When approaching short story collections, I usually look for a compelling theme, something that ties them together. Here the only thing that ties these stories together is, that they are written by women. Culturally and stylishly the individual stories have nothing in common, having a female as their lead in not enough to create a common thread.
Individually speaking, some of these stories are riveting, others are simply included because they were written by women, it seemed, neither fitting in quality nor style into the rest of the collection. I am usually a fan of short fiction, flash or conventional, but it does take the skill to cut the necessary, bring a story to its bare bones, not leave (as some stories in this volume), leave the meat, but loose some of the structure.
Individually these authors, I am sure are interesting, and I will take the time to find more works from them, especially Joyce Carol Oates, who with “Heat” is the best story of the collection.
If you are interested in short stories, there are better collections out there. But there are also worse.