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The World's Greatest Short Stories Paperback – Apr 28 2006

3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications (April 28 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0486447162
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486447162
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 14 x 21 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 200 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #18,197 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great stuff. An excellent read for writers learning to encapsulate a meaningful read in under 10 pages or so. Pretty good accumulation of stories, all from famous writers around the world. I would suggest combining the with 50 great short stories, by Milton Crane.
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Format: Paperback
Dear James: New edition urgently required. (See 2013 newsflash RE: Alice Munro.)
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love short stories. I have not yet read anything but the table of contents reads like a who's who of literature.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa8fc869c) out of 5 stars 55 reviews
96 of 98 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa8fb193c) out of 5 stars Great value short story collection Sept. 18 2010
By ris-3 - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dover books are unsurpassed for economy and content - $3.50 for a collection of 20 stories from all over the world within the past two centuries. Would be a great teaching resource, as many of these stories are used in curricula for middle/high school and college. Table of contents lists author, country of origin and year written. Relatively diverse selection of authors, but also includes standard anthology fare like Hemingway and Woolf. Stories included:

Bartleby the Scrivener (1853, Melville)
The Necklace (1884, de Maupassant)
The Death of Ivan Ilyich (1886, Tolstoy)
The Man Who Would Be King (1888, Kipling)
The Yellow Wallpaper (1892, C.P. Gilman)
The Fortune-Teller (1896, Machado de Assis)
The Lady with the Toy Dog (1899, Chekhov)
How Old Timofei Died with a Song (1900, Rilke)
The Path to the Cemetery (1901, Mann)
The Prussian Officer (1914, D.H. Lawrence)
Araby (1914, Joyce)
Mrs. Frola and Mr. Ponza, Her Son-in-Law (1917, Pirandello)
The Mark on the Wall (1921, Woolf)
A Hunger Artist (1922, Kafka)
The Garden-Party (1922, Mansfield)
The Grasshopper and the Bell Cricket (1924, Kawabata)
A Clean, Well-Lighted Place (1926, Hemingway)
The Sacrifical Egg (1959, Achebe)
A & P (1961, Updike)
Borges and I (1962, Borges)
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa956b90c) out of 5 stars Great collection for those quick moments on a train, bus, or plane. June 23 2011
By Nettie Scott - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is always worthwhile to keep a few paperback short story collections at hand to pop into a purse or carry-on bag. This collection is very good: diverse, well chosen, and memorable. These Dover Thrift Books are a great bargain as well.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa90cf948) out of 5 stars World's Greatest Short Stories Nov. 24 2012
By sarah - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is full of wonderful and new stories that I would not have become acquainted with if it were not for this book. Well written with different views and styles brought together by the compilation of short stories from all over the world, this was a very enjoyable book and I would gladly recommend it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa917a378) out of 5 stars A Few Short Stories Summarized March 30 2015
By prsoftball - Published on
Format: Paperback
The World’s Greatest Short Stories, edited by James Daley, is a compilation of twenty of the world’s famous, classic and lasting short stories. Some recognizable authors include America’s Herman Melville, Russia’s Leo Tolstoy and Ireland’s James Joyce.
This collection gives the reader a taste of literature from many countries around the world. Each story is expertly composed and showcases the style and talent of its author. This book is an excellent source for any reader with an appreciation for classic literature. Four short stories presented in The World’s Greatest Short Stories are: “Bartleby the Scrivener,” “The Yellow Wallpaper,” “Araby” and “The Sacrificial Egg.”
“Bartleby the Scrivener” was written by America’s Herman Melville in 1853. This story is told by an unnamed lawyer who employs four scriveners (law copyists). One such scrivener is Bartleby. He is an intelligent, hard working employee who dutifully completes his assignments. However, when asked to do anything else, Bartleby responds with a firm, “I would prefer not to.” Astonished by the response, the lawyer lets him be each time he responds thusly. The reader soon learns this lawyer moved on from his practice and sold his law practice to another lawyer. Bartleby “prefered not to” leave. The new owner throws Bartleby in jail where he dies because he “prefers not to” eat.
At the end of the short story, the lawyer exclaims “Oh, Bartleby! Oh, humanity!” (Melville, 30). From this the reader can understand that Melville is likening his formation of Bartleby to how he views humanity.
“The Yellow Wallpaper” was written by American Charlotte Perkins Gilman in 1892. The narrator is a hypochondriac of sorts who is placed on bedrest until her “nervous episodes” subside. For three months she is stuck in her room and those around her refuse to let her engage in any activity “for her own good.” In an attempt to keep herself occupied, she studies the rather strange yellow wallpaper in her bedroom. She begins to see patterns and shadows of a woman trapped inside. The narrator becomes obsessed and tries to help the woman in the wallpaper escape. The narrator goes mad.
This short story is a warning from Charlotte Perkins Gilman. She too suffered from nervous breakdowns and was sentenced to a long stint in bed. After she was released, Gilman felt mentally crippled from the solitude. Gilman wanted the world to realise the dangers of prolonged solitude and how it can permanently harm a person.
“Araby” was written by Irishman James Joyce in 1914. In this short story a nameless young boy falls into a deep infatuation over his friend’s sister. Desiring her to realize his affections, he promises to go to Araby - a Dublin bazaar - and bring her back a gift. His excitement for the bazaar makes his simple life seem even more monotonous. The day of the bazaar arrives, and the young boy finds himself there just before it closes. He scours the booths for a present for his love, only to find himself deeply disappointed at the simple trinkets presented. As the lights of the bazaar go out, the boy not only loses hope in finding a present, but also in his love. He feels that, like the bazaar, he will be sorely disappointed by her. What started off as a hopeful romance ended in despair. The boy realized at the end that his love for the girl was like the bazaar - a distraction from his monotonous life and would not culminate to anything.
“The Sacrificial Egg” was written by Nigerian native Chinua Achebe in 1959. Through its few pages Achebe offers the reader a glimpse of life on the River Niger: the customs, the beliefs and its downfall. In this short story Julius Obi, a native of the land, looks out over a once boisterous marketplace turned barren. As he takes in the surroundings, he remembers how its life was ended: Europeans. Achebe shows the reader how the coming of European traders, and most importantly their smallpox, brought a once proud village to its knees.
The World’s Greatest Short Stories is a masterful compilation of many of the world’s most influential short stories. These four short stories mentioned previously are but a glimpse of the deft stories that lay within.
HASH(0xa96d4e84) out of 5 stars Good modern sampling Aug. 21 2015
By Aislynn Faire - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There are a few stand-out gems in this one: The Death of Ivan Ilyich by Leo Tolstoy, The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and The Grasshopper and the Bell Cricket by Yasunari Kawabata. I enjoyed reading several of the other stories as well. If you're into modern literature, or you'd like to sample its various styles, this is a good collection. Why not five stars? Well, that's due to the nature of the stories themselves. Practically all of them have a rather negative, unsatisfying ending, which seems to be a tenet of famous short stories. Other than that, there is a good sampling here, with authors chosen from many countries.