Great 2014 Short Fiction Round-Up

by Rachel Baker on May 28, 2014

Thanks to David Abrams at Book Riot for providing a great round up for Short Fiction.

As lovers of short fiction already know, we’re nearly through National Short Story Month. Those who were unaware of this calendar distinction were probably off celebrating May as National Asparagus Month, National High Blood Pressure Month, or National Correct Posture Month (and if you think I’ve made any of those up, I challenge you to Google me wrong).

I’ve always been a champion of the short story, both as a writer and a reader, and it always stuns me into silence when I have friends–good friends, well-read, intelligent, tax-paying friends–who dismiss short stories with a flap of the hand, a pinch of the lips, and a deprecating, “Oh, I don’t do short stories.” It’s said in the same tone of voice a vegetarian would say, “I don’t do meat.” When I come back with, “Why not?” the answers are always vague and insubstantial. I have yet to find anyone who can give me a solid, tangible reason they don’t like short stories. Maybe they “don’t have time” for short fiction, perhaps they prefer relationships that are long-term (like the weeks-long marriage with a novel), or it could be they think short stories are quaintly old-fashioned and that they stopped being written around the time O. Henry died. In truth, I suspect they’re afraid of short stories, an aversion that began in grade school. Quite possibly involving nuns, rulers and knuckles.

At any rate, it’s a good thing we have a long month, with the full allotment of 31 days, in which to celebrate the shortest form of fiction. This year alone, there are so many great collections coming out we’ll need all the time we can get to sample them all. Here are just some of the 2014 short story collections topping my To-Be-Read pile (starting with two I’ve already swallowed in quick, eager gulps):

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