Synopses & Reviews
A collection of the twenty best contemporary short stories selected by series editor Laura Furman from hundreds of literary magazines, The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories 2010
brings to life a dazzling array of subjects: a street orphan in Malaysia, a cowboy and his teenage bride, a Russian nanny in Manhattan, a nineteenth-century Nigerian widow, and political prisoners on a Greek island. Also included are essays from the eminent jurors on their favorite stories, observations from the winners on what inspired them, and an extensive resource list of magazines.
Them Old Cowboy Songs
Clothed, Female Figure
The Headstrong Historian
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Stand By Me
Sheep May Safely Graze
The Woman of the House
A Spoiled Man
The End of My Life in New York
An East Egg Update
Into the Gorge
John Edgar Wideman
For author interviews, photos, and more, go to www.ohenryprizestories.com
A portion of the proceeds from this book will go to support the PEN Readers & Writers Literary Outreach Program.
"The best short storiees are small only when measured by the number of pages. Editor Tom Perrotta, best known for his novels Election and Little Children assembles a stellar collection of 20 stories that create their own worlds in 20 pages or less." -USA TODAY
A collection of the twenty best contemporary short stories selected by series editor Laura Furman from hundreds of literary magazines, The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories 2009 features unforgettable tales in settings as diverse as post-war Vietnam, a luxurious seaside development in Cape Town, an Egyptian desert village, and a permanently darkened New York City. Also included are essays from the eminent jurors on their favorite stories, observations from the winners on what inspired them, and an extensive resource list of magazines.
The Best American Short Stories is the premier annual showcase for the country's finest short fiction, guest edited in 2012 by Pultizer Prize winner Elizabeth Strout.
The Best American Series®
First, Best, and Best-Selling
The Best American series is the premier annual showcase for the countrys finest short fiction and nonfiction. Each volumes series editor selects notable works from hundreds of magazines, journals, and websites. A special guest editor, a leading writer in the field, then chooses the best twenty or so pieces to publish. This unique system has made the Best American series the most respected — and most popular — of its kind.
The Best American Short Stories 2012 includes
Nathan Englander, Mary Gaitskill, Roxane Gay, Jennifer Haigh,
Steven Millhauser, Alice Munro, Lawrence Osborne, Eric Puchner,
George Saunders, Kate Walbert, and others
“As our vision becomes more global, our storytelling is stretching in many ways. Stories increasingly change point of view, switch location, and sometimes pack as much material as a short novel might,” writes guest editor Elizabeth Strout. “Its the variety of voices that most indicates the increasing confluence of cultures involved in making us who we are.” The Best American Short Stories 2013
presents an impressive diversity of writers who dexterously lead us into their corners of the world.
In “Miss Lora,” Junot Díaz masterfully puts us in the mind of a teenage boy who throws aside his better sense and pursues an intimate affair with a high school teacher. Sheila Kohler tackles innocence and abuse as a child wanders away from her mother, in thrall to a stranger she believes is the “Magic Man.” Kirstin Valdez Quades “Nemecia” depicts the after-effects of a secret, violent family trauma. Joan Wickershams “The Tunnel” is a tragic love story about a mothers declining health and her daughters helplessness as she struggles to balance her responsibility to her mother and her own desires. New author Callan Winks “Breatharians” unsettles the reader as a farm boy shoulders a grim chore in the wake of his parents estrangement.
“Elizabeth Strout was a wonderful reader, an author who knows well that the sound of ones writing is just as important as and indivisible from the content,” writes series editor Heidi Pitlor. “Here are twenty compellingly told, powerfully felt stories about urgent matters with profound consequences.”
About the Author
TOM PERROTTA is the author of six works of fiction, most recently The Leftovers, published to wide acclaim in September 2011. His novels Election and Little Children were made into award-winning movies.HEIDI PITLOR is a former senior editor at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and has been the series editor for The Best American Short Stories since 2007. She is the author of the novels The Birthdays and The Daylight Marriage.
Table of Contents
Laura Furman, Series Editor
Annie Proulx, “Them Old Cowboy Songs,” The New Yorker
Kirstin Allio, “Clothed, Female Figure,” Iowa Review
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, “The Headstrong Historian,” The New Yorker
Wendell Berry, “Stand By Me,” Atlantic Monthly
Jess Row, “Sheep May Safely Graze,” Threepenny Review
Preeta Samarasan, “Birch Memorial,” A Public Space
Brad Watson, “Visitation,” The New Yorker
William Trevor, “The Woman of the House,” The New Yorker
Daniel Alarcón, “The Bridge,” Granta
Daniyal Mueenuddin, “A Spoiled Man," The New Yorker
James Lasdun, “Oh, Death,” Paris Review
Natalie Bakopoulos, “Fresco, Byzantine,” Tin House
Peter Cameron, “The End of My Life in New York,” Subtropics
Ted Sanders, “Obit,” Indiana Review
Damon Galgut, “The Lover,” Paris Review
George Bradley, “An East Egg Update,” Yale Review
Ron Rash, “Into the Gorge,” Southern Review
John Edgar Wideman, “Microstories,” Harper’s Magazine
Alice Munro, “Some Women,” The New Yorker
Lore Segal, “Making Good," The American Scholar
Reading The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories 2010
The Jurors on Their Favorites:
Junot Díaz on “A Simple Man” by Daniyal Mueenuddin
Paula Fox on “Oh, Death” by James Lasdun
Yiyun Li on “The Woman of the House” by William Trevor
Writing The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories 2010
The Writers on Their Work
Recommended Stories 2010