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Short Story Collections  

Descriptions of short story collections/short story writers available in the HHS library.
Last Updated: Jul 8, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

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Short Story Collections

Author Collections Description Stories to check out
Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi

The Thing Around Your Neck      


Contemporary.  Tensions between Nigerian and Nigerian-Americans.

"The Thing Around Your Neck," "Cell One," "The Headstrong Historian"

Akan, Uwem

Say You're One of Them

Contemporary. Nigerian. Character-driven. Haunting; Sobering; Violent.

"An Ex-Mas Feast," "Fattening for Gabbon"

Alexie, Sherman


The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven


Native American (b. 1966). Fictional portrait of the Spokane Indian Reservation.  Dark humor.

“The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven,” “Because My Father . . . Woodstock,“ “This Is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona,” “The Only Traffic Signal on the Reservation Doesn’t Flash Red Anymore,” “The First Annual All-Indian Horseshoe Pitch and Barbecue,” “A Train Is an Order of Occurrence Designed to Lead to Some Result,” “A Good Story,” “Imagining the Reservation,” “Family Portrait"

The Toughest Indian in the World

Conflicts of Indian heritage and traditions with the realities of the modern world.

"South by Southwest," "Assimilation"

Atwood, Margaret



Moral Disorder



Canadian (b. 1939). Novel in stories of a woman's life and loves. Moves around in time 1930s-1980s.

Babel, Isaac


Collected Stories


Russian (1894-1940). Revolutionary Russia. Russian-Jewish conflicts.

"In the Basement," "Awakening," "The Sun of Italy," "My First Goose"

Bambara, Toni Cade


The Sea Birds Are Still Alive

African-American (1939-1995). 1970s-1990s. NY City, growing up as an African-American.

"The Lesson"

Bausch, Richard


The Stories of Richard Bausch


American contemporary. Human relationships, psychological fiction

"Valor," "The Person I Have Mostly Become," "Design," "Police Dreams," "Weather," "Luck"

Beattie, Ann






American (b. 1947), contemporary. Psychological fiction, domestic fiction, black humor.

“Flechette Follies,” "Find and Replace," "The Rabbit Hole as Likely Explanation"

The New Yorker Stories


Modern American family life.

"Downhill," "Colorado," "Snakes' Shoes," "The Burning House," "Wanda's," "Like Glass," "Vermont," "Afloat," "Girl Talk," "Find and Replace," "The Rabbit Hole as Likely Explanation," "That Last Odd Day in L.A."

Borges, Jorge Luis



Argentine (1899-1986).  Early magical realism, antirealist; stories are dreamlike, labyrinthine.   

"The Library of Babel," "The Lottery," "The Garden of Forking Paths," "Circular Ruins"

Bradbury, Ray Collected Stories; The Illustrated Man

American (1920-2012).  Science fiction, fantasy, horror stories.

"The Veldt,"  "Kaleidoscope," "There Will Come Soft Rains," "The Rocket," "The Toynbee Convector," "The Flying Machine," "Let's Play Poison," "The Smile," "Sound of Thunder," "All Summer in a Day," "The Last Night In the World," "The Fox and the Forest"

Stories from The Illustrated Man are available online at

Butler, Robert Olen A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain Vietnamese immigrants in America.
Canfield, Dorothy A Harvest of Stories Vermont stories. WWII. "Ann Story," "A Revolutionary Heroine," "The Murder on Jefferson Street"
Card, Orson Scott Keeper of Dreams Fantasy fiction, science fiction "Space Boy," "Homeless in Hell," "Inventing Lovers on the Phone," "50 WPM."
Carver, Raymond Cathedral; Where I'm Calling From   
American (1938-1988). Stories about loneliness, loss, the tragic banality of everyday life ("dirty realism"), and redemption. "Cathedral," "What We Talk About When We Talk About Love," "Feathers," "A Small, Good Thing," "Fever," "Chef's House," "Where I'm Calling From," "Gazebo," "Why Don't You Dance"
Cather, Willa Great Short Works of Willa Cather American (1876-1947). Early 20th century. character-driven.  Best known for novel My Antonio. "Sculptor's Funeral,'' "Paul's Case,'' "Neighbour Rosicky,'' "The Bohemian Girl,'' "Old Mrs. Harris''
Chabon, Michael Werewolves in Their Youth American (b. 1963).  Contemporary.  Darkly humorous. "Werewolves in Their Youth," "Spikes," "House Hunting," "Son of the Wolfman"
Cheever, John Stories of John Cheever American (1912-1982).  Stories of New York, suburban manners; "the Chekhov of the suburbs." "The Swimmer," "The Enormous Radio", "The Hartleys," "The Sorrow of Gin," "Reunion," "The Sutton Place Story"
Chekhov, Anton Early Short Stories 1883-1888; Later Short Stories 1888-1903
Russian (1860-1904). Russian social life. Explores human behavior and psychology. "The Bet," "The Beauties," "After the Theatre," "Gooseberries," "The Darling," "The Lady with the Pet Dog"
Chopin, Kate The Awakening and Other Stories
Late 1880s. American (1851-1904). Role of women, early feminist; controversial when first published.  Famous for "The Awakening." "Désirée's Baby," "A Respectable Woman," "The Story of an Hour," "The Storm," "The Kiss," "Regret," "A Pair of Silk Stockings"
Cisneros, Sandra The House on Mango Street American (b. 1954). Latina. Coming-of-age stories. Cultural conflicts.  The House on Mango Street is the coming of age story of a young Latina, told in series of vignettes.
Woman Hollering Creek America/Mexico.  Magical realism. "Eleven," "My Lucy Friend," "Barbie-Q," "One Holy Night"
Danticat, Edwidge Krik? Krak! Haitian-American (b. 1969). Describe life under dictatorship in Haiti and the experiences of families who fled to the United States to start new lives. "Children of the Sea," "A Wall of Fire Rising," "Epilogue: Women Like Us"
Dinesen, Isak                Winter's Tales (Pseudonym of Baroness Karen Blixen), Danish (1885-1962), best known for Out of Africa. "The Blue Jar"
Dostoyevsky, Fyodor The Gambler and Other Stories

Russian (1821-1881). 19th century. Psychological fiction.

"White Nights"
Doyle, Sir Arthur Conan The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

British (1859-1930).  Detective stories featuring the famous Sherlock Holmes.

"The Speckled Band," "The Red-Headed League," "A Scandal in Bohemia," "The Blue Carbuncle,""The Empty House," "The Adventure of the Dancing Men," "The Five Orange Pips"
Ellison, Ralph Flying Home African-American 1930s-1950s. "A Party Down at the Square," "Flying Home"
Erdrich, Louise       The Red Convertible: Selected and New Stories; Love Medicine Native American (b. 1954). "The Red Convertible," "The Leap," "The Bingo Van," "Revival Road"
Faulkner, William Collected Stories of William Faulkner American (1897-1962).  Southern. 1930s-1940s.  "A Bear Hunt," "Two Soldiers, " "The Brooch," "Barn Burning," "That Evening Sun," "A Rose for Emily"

Fitzgerald, F. Scott The Short Stories of F. Scott Fitzgerald American (1896-1940). Jazz-age (roaring 20s). "The Jelly-Bean," "The Diamond as Big as the Ritz," "Babylon Revisited," "The Offshore Pirate," "Bernice Bobs Her Hair," "Winter Dreams," "One Trip Abroad," "A Short Trip Home," "The Lost Decade," "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button"
Gaiman, Neil Fragile Things Fantasy, science fiction, horror. "A Study in Emerald"
Garcia Marquez, Gabriel Strange Pilgrims, Innocent Erendira
Columbian (b. 1928). 1950s-1990s. Magic realism. "Light Is Like Water," "Maria dos Prazeres,""Bon Voyage, Mr. President," "'I Only Came to Use the Phone,'" "Seventeen Poisoned Englishmen"
Gilman, Charlotte Perkins The Yellow Wallpaper and Other Writings

American (1890-1895). Feminist fiction; Gothic fiction. 

"The Unnatural Mother"
Gogol, Nikolai
The Overcoat and Other Short Stories Russian (1809-1852). Father of Russian realism. 

"The Nose," "The Overcoat," "The Tale of How Ivan Ivanovich Quarreled with Ivan Nikiforovich"

Gordimer, Nadine       South African (b. 1923). Political activist.  Writes about politics, love, racial issues, apartheid. 

"Six Feet of the Country," "Once Upon a Time," "Some Are Born to Sweet Delight," "Country Lovers," "Beethoven Was One-Sixteenth Black"

Goss, Theodora In the Forest of Forgetting Fairy tales; Fantasy fiction; Gothic fiction “The Rose in Twelve Petals,” "Lily, with Clouds," "Sleeping with Bears," "Death Comes for Ervina"
Greene, Graham 21 Stories British (1904-1991). Compelling; Spare writing style. Character-driven. "The End of the Party," "The Destructors," "I Spy," "Across the Bridge," "A Shocking Accident"

Hannah, Barry Long, Last, Happy Southern. Witty, social commentary. Comic. "Mother Rooney Unscrolls the Hurt,""Fire Water," "Sick Soldier at Your Door," "Lastward, Deputy James," "Out-tell the Teller," "Testimony of Pilot."
Harte, Bret The Luck of Roaring Camp and Other Tales, The Best of Bret Harte, Stories of the Early West
Western stories; adventure, outdoors, war. "The Luck of Roaring Camp"

Hawthorne, Nathaniel



Hawthorne's Short Stories, Twice Told Tales


American (1804-1864).  Mid 1800s.  Best known for The Scarlet Letter.  New England, Romantic movement, moral allegories, Puritanism.

"The Minister's Black Veil,""The Artist of the Beautiful," "Rappaccini's Daughter," "The Birthmark"

Hemingway, Ernest

The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway; Men Without Women

American (1899-1961). 1920s, "lost generation."  Stories of war, big-game hunting, bullfighting, etc.

"The Snows of Kilimanjaro," "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macamber," "A Day's Wait," "The Gambler, the Nun, and the Radio," "An Alpine Idyll," "the Cat in the Rain," "After the Storm"

Nick Adam stories:  "Indian Camp," "The Doctor and the Doctor's Wife,” “The End of Something,” “The Three-Day Blow,” “The Battler,” “The Killers,” “In Another Country,” “Big Two-Hearted River I & II,” “Cross-Country Snow”

Hempel, Amy The Collected Stories American contemporary. Minimalist. "The Harvest" 
Henriquez, Cristina Come Together, Fall Apart Panama. Psychological fiction. "Yanina," "Ashes," "Mercury."
Henry, O. The Complete Works of O. Henry American (1862-1910). (pen name of William Sydney Porter)  1940s.  Warm, playful, witty; famous for clever twist endings ("O. Henry ending").  "The Gift of the Maji," "The Ransom of Red Chief," "The Cop and the Anthem," "A Retrieved Reformation"
Hill, Joe 20th Century Ghost Stories Horror. Fast-paced. Suspenseful. “My Father's Mask," “The Widow's Breakfast”
Hughes, Langston Short Stories; Not Without Laughter; The Ways of White Folk; The Best of Simple African-American (1902-1967). Harlem Renaissance. "The Blues I'm Playing," "Thank You, M'am," "Cora Unashamed," "Slave on the Block," "The Trouble with Angels," "Breakfast in Virginia," "On the Road," "Passing"
Hurston, Zora Neale The Complete Stories African-American. 1920s. Harlem Renaissance. "Sweat," "The Gilded Six-Bits," "John Redding Goes to Sea,""Drenched in Light," "Spunk"
Irving, Washington The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Other Stories American (1783-1859).  "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and "Rip Van Winkle" have been called the first American short stories, although both are actually Americanized versions of German folktales.  Humorous. "Rip Van Winkle," "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow"
Jackson, Shirley The Lottery and Other Stories American (1919-1965). Haunting stories. "The Lottery," "The Intoxicated," "Like Mother Used to Make," "Afternoon in Linen," "A Fine Old Firm"
Jin, Ha Ocean of Words Chinese fiction. Chinese-Russian conflict. "Dragon Head," "The Russian Prisoner" 
A Good Fall Chinese-American fiction; immigrant stories. "A Composer and His Parakeets," “Children as Enemies,” "The Beauty," "The Bane of the Internet," "In the Crossfire" (from other collections: "Saboteur")
James, Henry Selected Short Stories American (and, later, naturalized British) (1843-1916). New York and Boston; Americans abroad, turn of the century. "The Real Thing"
Joyce, James Dubliners Irish (1882-1941). Early 20th century--modern period; heavy content. "Araby," "Eveline," "The Dead"
Kafka, Franz   Austro-Hungarian (Prague) (1883-1924). Early 20th century.  Jewish, wrote in German. Powerful, disturbing; "waking nightmare."  Famous for "The Metamorphosis." "A Hunger Artist," "The Metamorphosis"
Kincaid, Jamaica At the Bottom of the River Antiguan-American (b. 1949). 1970s-1990s. Coming-of-age stories.  Free-form. "My Mother," "Girl"
King, Stephen Full Dark, No Stars Horror stories; Psychological suspense stories "1922," "Big Driver, "A Good Marriage"
Kundera, Milan Laughable Loves Franco-Czech (b. 1929). 1960s-present. Humorous and surprising. "The Hitchhiking Game"
Lahiri, Jhumpa Interpreter of Maladies Indian-American (Bengali); immigrant stories; many stories set in New England (Cambridge, Mass.) "Interpreter of Maladies," "A Temporary Matter," "A Real Durwan," "This Blessed House"
Lahiri, Jhumpa Unaccustomed Earth Indian-American (Bengali).   "Unaccustomed Earth"
Lanagan, Margo White Time Science fiction “Big Rage,” "Queen's Notice"
Lange, Richard Dead Boys Southern California. Contemporary. “Bank of America," “Long Lost," "Culver City"
Lawrence, D.H.             "Odour of Chrysanthemums," "The Rocking-Horse Winner"
LeGuin, Ursula Searoad Pacific Northwest. Psychological fiction
LeGuin, Ursula The Wind's Twelve Quarters Science Fiction. Fantasy Fiction.
Lessing, Doris
London, Jack American. Outdoorsman. Stories about Klondike Gold Rush, Alaskan winters, miners, immigrants, outcasts, lepers, Mexican Revolutionaries, and the mentally ill. "The Wit of Porportuk," "To Build a Fire," "Mauki," "The Mexican"
Maclean, Norman A River Runs Through It and Other Stories Western Montana. Two novellas.
Malouf, David The Complete Stories Australian. Role of family, memory, exile, and chance in the lives of ordinary people. “The Prowler,” “Lone Pine,” “The Valley of Lagoons"
Mansfield, Katherine The Garden Party and Other Stories; Stories New Zealand/Europe. Psychological drama. Early 20th century. Coming-of-age stories "The Garden-Party," "Marriage a la Mode," "Miss Brill," "Bliss," "The Modern Soul," "A Dill Pickle," "Weak Heart"
de Maupassant, Guy The Necklace and Other Stories French. 19th century.  Lack of sentimentality; "bitter, bawdy, chilling." "The Necklace"
Mishima, Yukio Death in Midsummer and Other Stories Japanese. 1960s. "Swaddling Clothes," "Death in Midsummer", "Three Million Yen", "Thermos Bottle"
Mosher, Howard Frank Where the Rivers Flow North Rural Vermont early 1900s.
Mukherjee, Bharati The Middleman and Other Stories Indian. Immigrant experience from many cultures/countries. "The Management of Grief"
Munro, Alice Too Much Happiness Canadian. Contemporary. Psychological, haunting. “Dimensions," “Wenlock Edge,” "Child's Play"
Dance of the Happy Shades

Fifteen stories about life in rural Ontario deal with adolescence, loneliness, broken hearts, an abandoned wife, family relations, blind dates, and an aspiring writer.

"Boys and Girls," "Red Dress"
The View From Castle Rock

A compilation of short fiction journeys from the Scotland of the author's own family heritage and a ship en route to the New World, to a family odyssey from Illinois to Canada and in and around Lake Huron.

Munro, Alice Runaway A collection of short fiction captures the lives of women of all ages and circumstances, as they deal with the limits and lies of passion, unfulfilled dreams, motherhood, betrayal, and the bonds of love. "Chance," "Soon" and "Silence"
Munro, Alice Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage A collection of short fiction explores the complexities of human relationships and emotions in stories about a housekeeper entering old-maidhood whose life is transformed by a practical joke and a lifelong philanderer who finds the tables turned.
Munro, Alice Open Secrets A collection of short stories in which women take the center stage includes the tale of a heart patient who experiences a revelation about an old love and that of a young woman struggling with a long-hidden secret.
Oates, Joyce Carol Small Avalanches and Other Stories American (b. 1938). Contemporary. Teen-age girls.  Often dark. "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been," "Small Avalanches," "Boys at a Picnic," "The Lady with the Pet Dog" (based on story by Chekhov)
Oates, Joyce Carol Wild Nights Reimagines the final days of five major American writers, in a collection of short works written in the subtly nuanced language style of each.
Oates, Joyce Carol Sourland Haunting, psychological, “Bonobo Momma," "Amputee,"
Oates, Joyce Carol High Lonesome "Last Days"
O'Brien, Tim The Things They Carried (located in FIC OBR) American (b. 1946). Vietnam War, combat experience.  "Autofiction," a mixture of autobiography and fiction.

"The Things They Carried," "On the Rainy River," "Sweetheart of the Song Tra Bong," Speaking of Courage," "In the Field," "How to Tell a True War Story," "The Man I Killed," "Friends," "Enemies"

O'Connor, Flannery The Complete Stories American (Southern) (1925-1964). Dark, disturbing, often violent; comic elements.  "Good Country People," "Everything That Rises Must Converge," "A Good Man Is Hard to Find," "Wildcat," "A Stroke of Good Fortune," "A Late Encounter with the Enemy," "Greenfleaf," "The Life You Save May Be Your Own"
O'Connor, Frank Collected Stories Irish (1903-1966). Humorous. 1950s, 1960s. "Guests of the Nation," "My Oedipus Complex," "Christmas Morning," "First Confession," "Judas"
Paley, Grace The Collected Stories

American (1922-2007). Lived in Thetford, VT. Anti-war activist, anarchist, feminist. Stories about everyday life.

"An Interest in Life,'' "Faith in a Tree,'' "A Conversation with My Father," "The Loudest Voice"
Parker, Dorothy The Collected Stories of Dorothy Parker American (1893-1967). Darkly humorous. Witty. Commentary on everyday life. "A Telephone Call"
Poe, Edgar Allan The Works of Edgar Allan Poe American (1809-1849). Horror/creepy, often perverse. "The Cask of Amontillado," "The Tell-Tale Heart," "The Pit and the Pendulum," "The Black Cat," "The Masque of the Red Death," "The Premature Burial," "The Fall of the House of Usher"
Porter, Katherine Anne The Collected Stories of Catherine Anne Porter
Texas. 1930s-1960s. Tense, finely crafted stories; dark themes (betrayal, death, evil).  "Pale Horse, Pale Rider," "The Grave," "The Jilting of Granny Weatherall"
Proulx, Annie Heart Songs American (b. 1935). Strong sense of place; stories set in rural New England (Heart Songs), Newfoundland, the West (Wyoming, Montana) (Just the Way It Is).   

"The Unclouded Day," "Stone City," "A Run of Bad Luck," "In the Pit," "On the Antler," "A Country Killing"

Proulx, Annie Just the Way It Is American (b. 1935). Strong sense of place; stories set in rural New England (Heart Songs), Newfoundland, Wyoming (Just the Way It Is), Montana.   “Family Man,” “I've Always Loved This Place,” “Swamp Mischief”
Russell, Karen St. Lucy's Home For Girls Raised By Wolves Presents ten short stories set in the Florida Everglades and starring children who must survive against incredible odds. “Children’s Reminiscences of the Westward Migration," “The City of Shells”
Salinger, J.D. Nine Stories American (1919-2010). 1950s.  Lived in Cornish, N.H. (famous recluse).  Author of The Catcher in the Rye. "For Esme-With Love and Squalor," "A Perfect Day for Bananafish," "Just Before the War with the Eskimos"
Saunders, George In Persusion Nation (and others)
American. Satire. Surrealist fiction. "Puppy," "Bohemians, "The Red Bow"
Singer, Isaac Bashevis       Yiddish (born in Poland), naturalized American (1904-1991).       "Gimpel the Fool"
Smith, Lee Mrs. Darcy and the Blue-eyed Stranger American. Funny. Heartwarming. "Toastmaster," "House Tour," "The Happy Memory Club"
Strout, Elizabeth

Oliver Kitteridge (call number FIC STO)

American. Small town Maine. Stories and characters are interelated.  “Pharmacy,” “Incoming Tide,” “Security,” “A Little Burst"
Steinbeck, John The Long Valley American (1902-1968). 1930s-1960s.  Author of Of MIce and Men, The Grapes of Wrath. "The Murder," "The Chrysanthemums," "Flight"
Tolstoy, Leo Death of Ivan Ilych and Other Stories Russian. 1860s-1900s.  Famous for War and Peace, Anna Karenina. "The Death of Ivan Ilych," "Family Happiness," "Hadji Murád," "Father Sergius," "After the Ball," "Aloysha the Pot"
Trevor, William The Collected Stories Irish. Rural life in Ireland. 1960s-present. "Memories of Youghal" "Bodily Secrets" "Two More Gallants"

Thurber, James

The Thurber Carnival American (1894-1961).  Humorist.     "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty," "The Curb in the Sky"
Updike, John Pigeon Feathers American (1932-2009).  Selected stories, demonstrating the author's insight into human emotions and the search for happiness. Witty.  Often writes about adolescence. "Flight," Pigeon Feathers,""A&P"
Updike, John My Father's Tears and Other Stories A collection of short fiction includes tales set in the author's native Pennsylvania, the New England suburbs, and foreign countries, all depicting different facets of the American experience from the Depression through the aftermath of 9/11.
Updike, John Museums & Women American 1950s. "Museums & Women"
Vonnegut, Kurt Welcome to the Monkey House American (1922-2007). Satire. Science Fiction. Darkly Humerous. "Harrison Bergeron," "All the King's Horses," The Hyannis Port Story," "Who Am I This Time?"
Walker, Alice The Way Forward is with a Broken Heart African-American (b. 1944). Southern. Civil Rights Movement. Part memoir, part fiction. "To My Young Husband," "Roselily," "Everyday Use"
Welty, Eudora The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty American (1909-2001). Southern. More tranquil view of the south than Faulkner. Small town life. "Death of a Traveling Salesman," "Why I Live at the P.O.," "A Worn Path"
Wharton, Edith The New York Stories of Edith Wharton

American (1862-1937). Portraits of the upper class in 19th century (turn of the century) New York.  Often concerns women's roles, particularly as pertains to class and marriage New York.

"Roman Fever"
The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton Ghost stories. Set in the bleak mansions of England, America, and Normandy, eleven classic tales depict the terrors of persons confronted by unearthly entities. "Pomegranate Seed," "Afterword," "The Triumph of Night"
Wideman, John Edgar     African American (b. 1941)    "All Stories Are True"
Williams, Joy    American (b. 1944).  Relationships, often funny, dark. "Train"
Wolff, Tobias
Our Story Begins,
The Night in Question
American (b. 1945). Modern day relationships. "Powder," "Bullet in the Brain," "Say Yes," "Firelight," "Hunters in the Snow," "The Rich Brother," "The Other Miller, "Smorgasbord," "Lady's Dream," "The Chain," "Her Dog"  (+ can find online: "Smokers")
Wolff, Tobias In the Garden of North American Martyrs

"Face to Face," "Liars," "Passengers"

Ch'oe, Yun There a Petal Silently Falls Korean. Presents three novellas in which traumatic events haunt each of the characters. 

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