Monthly Archives: August 2010

Take A Break, Read Some Short Stories

Short stories are ideal for travelers and busy people. On a trip, you can read two stories while waiting for the plane, and two more coming back. It also makes a light entertainment on a dentist room rather than relying on your Blackberry. Besides, you won’t need to feel guilty of not finishing the whole book. Here we compile some entertaining short stories from all times, from humor, cultural or even romance.

Holidays On Ice by David Sedaris

A quick read around the holidays, this book is a collection of Christmas theme stories in David Sedaris’s dark playful humor. As always, Sedaris’s best work is his sharply observed nonfiction. Worth the price of the book alone is the hilarious “SantaLand Diaries,” Sedaris’s chronicle of his time working as an elf at Macy’s, covering everything from the preliminary group lectures. In a sly way, it carries a holiday message all its own. Read it aloud to the adults after the kids have gone to bed.

Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri

This stunning debut collection unerringly charts the emotional journeys of characters seeking love beyond the barriers of nations and generations. This book is mostly about different types of loneliness and disconnection with the world. Each story deals with some mix of cultural and romantic uncertainty, giving the collection a pleasing continuity. There was a story about a woman with an illness who was kept in a small room and could not live in a normal way – at her lowest point she became pregnant and then was cured, maybe not of her illness, but of her isolation and immaturity.

What We Talk About When We Talk About Love by Raymond Carver

In his second collection of stories, as in his first, Carver’s characters are peripheral people- people without education, insight or prospects, people too unimaginative to even give up. This book consists of 17 stories, each with unique, crystal insight into the way people work and interact with each other. Known not only as the most well-known short story title of the latter part of the 20th century; this book has come to stand for an entire aesthetic, the bare-bones prose style for which Raymond Carver became famous.

Complete Tales & Poems by Edgar Allan Poe

This single volume brings together all of Poe’s stories and poems, and illuminates the diverse and multifaceted genius of one of the greatest and most influential figures in American literary history. Featuring Poe’s best known works, including Fall of the House of Usher, The Gold Bug, The Imp of the Perverse, The Black Cat, The Pit and the Pendulum, The Murders in the Rue Morgue, As another reviewer mentioned, there are no annotations.

Skin & Other Stories by Roald Dahl

Beloved children author Roald Dahl wrote a series of delightful, dark humour and eleven of them are compiled in Skin and Other Stories. Dahl once said, “The success to a short story is simple, it must have a beginning, a middle and an end. The reader must never want to put it down.” Reading this book has proven that there is no reason to put down this book too early. As single story, if not the entire book, is short enough to finish in one sitting.

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Fish Bowl Bookends

I am forever in hunt for fun and quirky bookends, but the problem is most of them are not sturdy enough to support my thick hardcover collection. So when I came across this Halve Glass Bookends which made from real heavy glasses, I know I gotta have ’em! I can fill it with fishes for the obvious reason, or simply fill it with decorative seashells for easier maintenance. Heck, I can even fill it with pencils! or flower! The lists are endless…

Halve Glass Bookends

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Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

MiddlesexMiddlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

There is a possibility for me to like this book more.. I particulary enjoyed the journey of Cal (or Caliope, in this story).. It portrays a beautiful and struggling journey of a young girl who is questioning her sexuality. BUT on the contrary, I got bored reading the stories about her grandparents and her parents, which take like.. 3/4 of the book! If only this book tells more about Cal, then no doubt, it will be more interesting, might even compete the popularity of the “Secret Life of Bees”…

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Time Was Soft There: A Paris Sojourn at Shakespeare & Co. by Jeremy Mercer

Time Was Soft There: A Paris Sojourn at Shakespeare & Co.Time Was Soft There: A Paris Sojourn at Shakespeare & Co. by Jeremy Mercer

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is like a modern tale of Alice in Wonderland.. I seldom find a book that is even better than the synopsis.. until I read this. It’s amazing that even in this era, such charming bookstore, with such original personality still exists. Jeremy Mercer did an excellent job describing his adventure during his stay here. Nevertheless, after reading it, I browsed for as many pics as I can find about Shakespeare and Co to let my imagination come alive. Now my next quest will be… purchased a book from here, with the “Shakespeare and Co” stamped.

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Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout

Olive KitteridgeOlive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

very beautiful..
you’ll still get the goosebumps days after..
Elizabeth Strout is a brilliant writer..
She is able to write stories of 13 different individuals equally good..

Definitely a book that I’ll reread again, not necessarily from front to back, I can choose any chapter and be delightful.
It’s amazing how she is able to write such a deep and moving story in one chapter, yet the whole 1 chapters bound them together.

But this book might not be suitable for those who reads chick lits, its beautiful, but slow, you can’t read it fast, you have to immerse in each chapter.. and while you’re enjoying it suddenly the chapter is finished.. makes you crave for more..

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