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The Oxford Book of English Short Stories

The Oxford Book of English Short Stories Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"The subjects of these stories range from the sublime to the ridiculous, from the momentous to the trivial, from the grim to the farcical," writes acclaimed novelist A.S. Byatt in her introduction to this remarkable collection. Indeed, if the eccentricities of the English imagination can be contained in a single volume, an anthology of short stories might be the best book for the task.

From Anthony Trollope, Charles Dickens, and Thomas Hardy through Rudyard Kipling, H.G. Wells, D.H. Lawrence, and Virginia Woolf, right up to Graham Greene, J.G. Ballard, Angela Carter, Ian McEwan, and many others, The Oxford Book of English Short Stories exhibits the capacious and often capricious nature of the English literary sensibility. "There is English empiricism, English pragmatism, English starkness, English humour, English satire, English dandyism, English horror, and English whimsy," notes A.S. Byatt in surveying the stories she has selected. "There are characteristic mixed modes which seem to go back further than Austen and Defoe to Chaucer and Shakespeare." Byatt shows us the links between stories, the literary currents that both connect and distinguish writers as diverse as Mary Mann, V.S. Pritchett, P.G. Wodehouse, Penelope Fitzgerald, and Alan Sillitoe. And although the thirty-seven stories gathered here range from social realism to surreal fantasy, from rural poverty to war-blitzed London, from tales of the supernatural to precise delineations of the mundane, all are unified by Byatt's demanding criteria that the works be both "startling and satisfying."

For short story lovers and anyone unable to resist the enchantments of the English imagination, The Oxford Book of Short Stories offers a wide array of unforgettable pleasures.

About the Author

A.S. Byatt is a prize-winning novelist, essayist, reviewer, and broadcaster. Her books include Possession, The Matisse Stories, and Angels and Insects.

Table of Contents

Introduction, A. S. Byatt

The Sacristan of St Botolph, William Gilbert

The Haunted House, Charles Dickens

Relics of General Chasse, A Tale of Antwerp, Anthony Trollope

A Mere Interlude, Thomas Hardy

Little Brother, Mary Mann

Two Doctors, M. R. James

Behind the Shade, Arthur Morrison

Wireless, Rudyard Kipling

Under the Knife, H. G. Wells

A White Night, Charlotte Mew

The Toys of Peace, Saki

The Tremendous Adventures of Major Brown, G. K. Chesterton

Some Talk of Alexander, A. E. Coppard

The Reverent Wooing of Archibald, P. G. Wodehouse

Solid Objects, Virginia Woolf

The Man who Loved Islands, D. H. Lawrence

A Tragedy in Green, Ronald Firbank

A Widow's Quilt, Sylvia Townsend Warner

Nuns at Luncheon, Aldous Huxley

Landlord of the Crystal Fountain, Malachi Whitaker

On the Edge of the Cliff, V. S. Pritchett

A Dream of Winter, Rosamund Lehmann

An Englishman's Home, Evelyn Waugh

The Destructors, Graham Greene

The Waterfall, H. E. Bates

The Troll, T. H. White

The Blush, Elizabeth Taylor

At Hiruharama, Penelope Fitzgerald

My Flannel Knickers, Leonora Carrington

Enoch's Two Letters, Alan Sillitoe

Dream Cargoes, J. G. Ballard

Telephone, John Fuller

My Story, John Fuller

The Kiss, Angela Carter

The Beauty of the Dawn Shift, Rose Tremain

Solid Geometry, Ian McEwan

Dead Languages, Philip Hensher

Product Details

Byatt, A. S.
Oxford University Press
null, A. S.
Oxford ;
Anthologies (multiple authors)
Literature/English | British Literature | Anthologies
Edition Description:
genuine leather black indexed 594RRL
Oxford Books of Prose
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
20 illus.
8.6 x 5.6 x 1.4 in 1.55 lb

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » General
Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » Oxford Anthologies

The Oxford Book of English Short Stories
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Product details 472 pages Oxford University Press - English 9780192142382 Reviews:
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