Short stories sometimes get a bad rap - but these collections just might change your mind about the writing form.
I am a bona-fide, passionate fan of the short story. I love writing them, I love reading them, and I love recommending them to people. However, many people, when hearing the term "short story," may think of the boring ones they read in middle or high school. A lot of people have been burned by short stories, and I get it - I really do. Short stories might seem heavy or dull or like the author is trying to do too much in just a few short pages.
“A short story is the ultimate close-up magic trick – a couple of thousand words to take you around the universe or break your heart.” – Neil Gaiman
What makes short stories magical to me, though, is that there is so much done in those few pages. A good short story is as though a poem and a novel were fused together - there is the gorgeous language and mood of a poem coupled with the narrative and characters of a novel. To write a good short story requires the brevity of a poet but the plotting of a novelist. To read a good short story requires an open mind - you are not necessarily going to be reading a logical, linear piece of writing. Instead, a short story might artfully and successfully capture a mood or a feeling. It could change your day or outlook or even your life.
For me, that book was Birds of America, a collection of short stories by the author Lorrie Moore. I hope that perhaps the books below might be one of those books for you - if not life-changing, then at least mind-broadening or even just a pleasant or needed read.