Tag Archives: Short Story Collection

Stories from the Kitchen: The Joy of Cooking by Elissa Schappell

After reading A Bunch of Broccoli on the Third Shelf last week, I immediately put a request for Lara Vapnyar’s Broccoli and Other Tales of Food and Love at the library. And now I’m going to do the same for Elissa Schappell’s Blueprints for Building Better Girls from which The Joy of Cooking is taken! […]

Stories from the Kitchen: A Bunch of Broccoli on the Third Shelf by Lara Vapnyar

In A Bunch of Broccoli on the Third Shelf, Nina is a Russian immigrant living in Brooklyn, New York. Nina had developed a fascination for vegetables soon after she arrived in America – she still remembers being delighted by the sight of “colorful piles of oranges, tomatoes, cucumbers” outside a small Chinese grocery store in […]

Stories from the Kitchen: Short Friday by Isaac Bashevis Singer

Before Short Friday I had never read anything by Isaac Bashevis Singer or even heard of him. Isaac is a Nobel Laureate and a notable author in Yiddish literature, who incorporated his orthodox Jewish roots into his writings despite identifying himself as a sceptic. Like many of his stories, Short Friday revolves around a struggling […]

The End of the World and Other Catastrophes Edited by Mike Ashley

When the British Library Science Fiction Classics series first came out, I planned on going through them in the order they get published. But ever since I received The End of the World and Other Catastrophes, I’ve been itching to read it. With catastrophic disasters striking more often nowadays, and the increase in the likelihood […]

Stories from the Kitchen: A Kitchen Allegory by M. F. K. Fisher

As she chopped herbs and sliced asparagus and poured boiling water and added the magic dash of brandy to the mixed soft meat, she kept thinking, but not in a frantic way at all, about never seeing two more people again… All she wanted to do was make them full of her love, her food, […]

Stories from the Kitchen: Tea by Saki

Next up in Stories from the Kitchen is an excerpt from Guy de Maupassant’s novel Bel Ami. There are a few excerpts included in this collection, and I’m not sure of the rationale behind it – although they might entice readers to pick up the novels, these are not short stories. So I will be skipping them. In […]

Certain American States: Stories by Catherine Lacey

Similar to Kimberly King Parsons’s Black Light, Catherine Lacey’s stories in Certain American States feature lost, broken individuals who are in various states of mind. These people are at turning points in their lives going through loss – be it the loss of a loved one, or merely a sense of lack of direction in their lives. So […]

Stories from the Kitchen: Love and Oysters by Charles Dickens

It’s time to crack open a new short story collection, and this time I’m going with Stories from the Kitchen edited by Diana Secker Tesdell. Having read Cat Stories and Love Stories before, this will be my third collection put together by Diana and compared to those two, I think, I like the way this book is […]

Black Light by Kimberly King Parsons

I finished reading Kimberly King Parsons’s highly anticipated short story collection, Black Light two nights ago. Had I reviewed and rated this then, it would have probably gotten no more than three stars from me. But now that I’ve had time to reflect on its stories, I’m leaning towards upgrading it to four-stars read. Kimberly’s stories are […]

Good Evening, Mrs. Craven – The Wartime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes: The Waste of It All

The Waste of It All (published on 16 December 1944) is the final story in this fantastic war-story collection. It’s about Frances and Philip, a young couple separated by WWII. Three years ago, soon after they met and tied the knot, Philip had been called to duty in the Middle East. And now this separation is […]

Good Evening, Mrs. Craven – The Wartime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes: The Danger

In the penultimate story of this collection (published on 8 July 1944), the Dudleys are over the moon to finally have their house to themselves. When the Blitz began in 1940, the Dudleys had opened their countryside doors to the Rudds, evacuees from London. The Dudleys had thought the Blitz, and the war would be […]

The Wedding of Zein by Tayeb Salih

I’ve been fond of reading for as long as I can remember, but I only started reading translated fiction roughly a decade ago. Not a lot of books get translated to Sinhala, my native tongue, so I wasn’t able to access most of the translated works until I improved my English reading fluency. And now, […]

Good Evening, Mrs. Craven – The Wartime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes: Combined Operations

When the Butlers’ London flat got destroyed on a fateful day during the Blitz, it had only felt natural to the Parsons to invite the Butlers over to their Oxfordshire cottage. Both these young couples have been great friends for the longest time, so cohabitation had seemed like the perfect idea to all parties involved. […]

Good Evening, Mrs. Craven – The Wartime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes: War Among Strangers

The stories in Good Evening, Mrs. Craven are definitely taking a sombre tone now. War Among Strangers had been published on 17 January 1942, so Mollie must have written it right after the Pearl Harbor attack. In it, Mrs. Bristowe is the wife of a British civil servant. When WWII broke, she and her husband […]

Good Evening, Mrs Craven – The Wartime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes: Goodbye, My Love

In Goodbye, My Love (published on 13 December 1941), Adrian Vyner is a young man who has just been called to serve in WWII. Adrian is to leave London in four days, so he and his wife Ruth have a lot to do before that, and on the top of that list is to pay […]