Synopses & Reviews
This year's "Best American Short Stories" is edited by the critically acclaimed and best-selling author Sue Miller, whose latest book is "While I Was Gone." Miller's selections showcase a wide variety of new voices and masters.
Since its inception in 1915, the Best American series has become the premier annual showcase for the country's finest short fiction and nonfiction. For each volume, a series editor reads pieces from hundreds of periodicals, then selects between fifty and a hundred outstanding works. That selection is pared down to the twenty or so very best pieces by a guest editor who is widely recognized as a leading writer in his or her field. This unique system has helped make the Best American series the most respected -- and most popular -- of its kind.
This year's Best American Short Stories features a rich mix of voices, from both intriguing new writers and established masters of the form like Michael Chabon, Edwidge Danticat, Richard Ford, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Arthur Miller. The 2002 collection includes stories about everything from illicit love affairs to family, the immigrant experience and badly behaved children -- stories varied in subject but unified in their power and humanity. In the words of this year's guest editor, the best-selling author Sue Miller, "The American short story today [is] healthy and strong . . . These stories arrived in the nick of time . . . to teach me once more what we read fiction for."
About the Author
Sue Miller is the best-selling author of the Good Mother (made into a feature-length film in 1988), Interviewing the Abbotts (adapted into a feature-length film in 1997), Family Pictures (nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award), For Love, The Distinguished Guest, While I Was Gone (an Oprah pick), and, most recently, The World Below. She lives in Boston.
Table of Contents
Foreword ix Introduction by Sue Miller xiii
Michael Chabon. Along the Frontage Road 1 from The New Yorker
Carolyn Cooke. The Sugar-Tit 9 from Agni Review
Ann Cummins. The Red Ant House 21 from McSweeneys
Edwidge Danticat. Seven 35 from The New Yorker
E. L. Doctorow. A House on the Plains 47 from The New Yorker
Richard Ford. Puppy 68 from The Southern Review
Melissa Hardy. The Heifer 97 from Descant
Karl Iagnemma. Zilkowskis Theorem 116 from Zoetrope
Jhumpa Lahiri. Nobodys Business 136 from The New Yorker
Beth Lordan. Digging 173 from The Atlantic Monthly
Alice Mattison. In Case Were Separated 187 from Ploughshares
Jill McCorkle. Billy Goats 199 from Bomb
Tom McNeal. Watermelon Days 209 from Zoetrope
Leonard Michaels. Nachman from Los Angeles 230 from The New Yorker
Arthur Miller. Bulldog 250 from The New Yorker
Meg Mullins. The Rug 260 from The Iowa Review
Alice Munro. Family Furnishings 276 from The New Yorker
Akhil Sharma. Surrounded by Sleep 304 from The New Yorker
Jim Shepard. Love and Hydrogen 319 from Harpers Magazine
Mary Yukari Waters. Aftermath 333 from Manoa
Contributors Notes 345 100 Other Distinguished Stories of 2001 357 Editorial Addresses of American and Canadian Magazines Publishing Short Stories 361