This is the first in a series of monthly posts in which I'll be having a look at the short story collections being published, which can all be found on The Short Review's Collections Published page together with a (non-complete) list of the collections published in 2008 and links to those we reviewed.
I was going to do Jan and Feb together, but that was before I had a look at Amazon UK's list and found that there are 58 collections and anthologies being published this month!
Of course, this is by no means a definite and complete list - firstly, this is quite a lot of work because around half of the books Amazon calls "Short Stories" are not (a large amount of romantic fiction is misclassified, for some strange reason). Second, there are collections published by small presses that aren't sold through Amazon, so I apologise in advance for any omissions, please use the comments section here to rectify this! Third, some of the books in this list are paperback versions of books previously published in hardback - they are included here because I personally think they are worth counting, since paperbacks can reach a different readership.
Ok, so what is in store this month? First, there are many reissues of classic collections, and new collections of classic stories, from Kipling to Chekhov, HE Bates, Henry James and F. Scott Fitzgerald, Edith Wharton and Dostoevsky, Thomas Hardy and Alexander Pushkin, Jane Austen and Tolstoy.
In terms of well-known contemporary writers, Ali Smith has a new collection, the First Person and Other Stories, which we will be reviewing in the next few months, Jay McInerney has a new collection, The Last Bachelor, two of Tim Gautreaux's collections are being republished, as is Enormous Changes at the Last Minute by the late Grace Paley, and Louise Erdrich is looking back over her writings in The Red Convertible: Selected and New Stories, 1978-2008.
Collections from names that are new to me include:
Stories from Another Time by Benjamin Bautista about which the Phillipine Star said "In their unpretentiousness lies their power";
A Loud Humming Sound Came From Above by Johnny Strike which his publisher says "feature [a] genre-bending, hallucinatory style"
The One Marvelous Thing by Rikki Ducornet, which the LA Times calls "full of rich, literary, sophisticated, worldly, historical references... a manifesto of middle-aged rage. "
Nature's Magician by Anthony Cropper *Short Review coming soon*
Across the Sky by Mark Rich
How the Broken Lead the Blind by Matt Bell
The Long White By Sharon Dilworth, winner of the Iowa Short Fiction Award
Last Known Position by James Mathews, winner of the Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction
There are a number of geographically-specific collections :
If You Eat, You Never Die: Chicago Tales by Tony Romano, described by the Chicago Tribune as "an evocation of time, place and immigrant experience that comes alive with strong detail".
Behind Closed Doors: Her Father's House and Other Stories of Sicily by the late Italian author Maria Messina, translated into English, first published in 2007.
Tiger Burning Bright, Arlene Sanders's debut collection, a finalist for the Jefferson press prize, contains, are stories set in rural and urban Appalachia.
And the World Changed: Contemporary Stories by Pakistani Women edited by Muneeza Shamsie, is described by the Feminist Review as "an impressive anthology of twenty-five short stories by any standard, ... all the more impressive knowing it is the only such collection of stories written in English by Pakistani women. "
Canary Wharf by Orna Ní Choileáin, which is, says the Irish Times "set against a backdrop of high finance and technology and marks the debut of a new voice in Irish language literature."
Cuentos: Stories from Puerto Rico edited by Kal Wagenheim, which the publisher describes as "a bilingual anthology of twelve short stories, many of which appeared in the 1960s in the English-language magazine The San Juan Review."
Morningside Heights: New York Stories by Joe Tsujimoto which, according to the Honolulu Weekly, "is many things: it is an epitaph for the past, it is a quest, it is an appreciation for the places that shape a person, the grand arcs and vertical lines of cities, the souls of the people who live in them, and it is an attempt to know how these things pull so greatly on the heart."
Anthologies published in January include:
A Holiday Read of Short Stories edited by Blanche White
The Global Village (Tell Tales) edited by Courttia Newland and Monique Roffey
Best Lesbian Romance 2009 edited by Radclyffe
Best Lesbian Love Stories 2009 edited by Simone Thorne
Best Gay Romance 2009 edited by Labonte and Richard
Fiction 100: An Anthology of Short Fiction: edited by James H. Pickering
and more...! Check out the (almost full) list on The Short Review's Collections Published page. Who says no short story collections are being published??
Let me know if I have missed your new collection or anthology, I will add it to the list.