Friday, January 20, 2012

The Story Prize: the best of US short fiction

The Story Prize finalists for 2011 have been chosen. This award has been around since 2004 and is described as such: "an annual book award honoring the author of an outstanding collection of short fiction with a $20,000 cash award. Each of two runners-up will receive $5,000. Eligible books must be written in English and first published in the United States during a calendar year."

This year's finalists are:

Binocular Vision: new and selected stories (M)
by Edith Pearlman

Edith Pearlman's Binocular Vision combines 13 new stories and 21 previously collected stories, dating to 1976, from a career short story writer whose brilliant work has only recently captured much-deserved attention.

"*Starred Review* There is a vast difference between reading Pearlman's stories in a magazine or anthology and reading this collection. In settings ranging from unnamed South American countries to the Boston suburbs, from the current day to the last century (e.g., the Russian Revolution, WWII), depictions of people, places, and manners are so perfect that the stories become totally immersive... Give this wonderful collection to fans of such classic short story writers as Andre Dubus and Alice Munro and novelists like Nicole Krauss. They will thank you." - Booklist

The Angel Esmeralda: nine stories (M)
by Don DeLillo

Although The Angel Esmeralda is Don DeLillo's first short story collection, the nine powerful stories, published between 1979 and 2011, echo quintessential career-long themes.

"A collection of short stories, written between 1979 and 2011, chronicling - and foretelling - three decades of American life Set in Greece, the Caribbean, Manhattan, a white-collar prison and outer space, these nine stories are a mesmerizing introduction to Don DeLillo's iconic voice, from the rich, startling, jazz-infused rhythms of his early work to the spare, distilled, monastic language of the later stories" - Publisher

We Others: new and selected stories (M)
by Steven Millhauser

The 21 ingenious stories in We Others by Steven Millhauser include seven newly collected pieces alongside selected work from four previous collections, going back to 1981.

"The surreal, magical, and vaguely threatening universe of Pulitzer Prize-winning author Millhauser is grandly portrayed in this story collection. Among the new tales, book lovers will not want to miss "The People of the Book," a story in the form of a graduation speech to young people who learn of their strange heritage from a distant past. The title piece is an enthralling ghost story, detailing the journey of a departed "soul" and his relationship to a lonely woman whose house he comes to inhabit.... Entertaining and disturbing, these brilliant creations are recommended for most fiction readers; an especially good choice for libraries that don't currently have at least some of Millhauser's collections." - Library Journal

No comments:

Post a Comment