Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Outside of a Dog, #12

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read." - Groucho Marx.

A Collection Obsession

"The Seven Stages of Falling in Love with an Author" by Gene Ambaum and Bill Barnes, shown here with permission from Overdue Media, LLC, all rights reserved.

What better way to read more of what your favorite author has written, or to discover a new author, than by reading a collection of short stories or essays? Here’s a list of some great collections you might want to check out:

By Several Authors:

Firebirds by Diana Wynne Jones, et al/Firebirds Rising by Sharyn November

These two books are collections of original science fiction and fantasy, featuring works by Emma Bull, Nancy Farmer, Tanith Lee, and Nina Kiriki Hoffman.

The Essential Bordertown, edited by Terri Windling

Written in the mid-eighties, the Bordertown/Borderlands books operated on a shared-world theory: The world of Bordertown, where humans, elves, and all sorts of otherkin share a world where magic and technology don't always see eye to eye. There are several books and short story collections based here (many are out of print now), but this is the best guide and a great place to find amazing authors like Midori Snyder and Will Shetterly.

Many Bloody Returns, Jim Butcher, Laurell K. Hamilton, Charlaine Harris and Toni L. P. Kelner

13 new vampire stories are presented here, all sharing the theme of everything that can go supernaturally wrong on your birthday.

(See also: My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding & My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon, both edited by P.N. Elrod)

Prom Nights from Hell, Meg Cabot, Stephenie Meyer, Kim Harrison, and Lauren Myracle

Think your Prom night was Hell? Try being a demon huntress, or a girl who accidentally brings her Prom date back from the grave! These stories are short and sweet - they're a YA collection, but fun for adults, too.

Noisy Outlaws, Unfriendly Blobs, and Some Other Things That Aren't as Scary, Maybe, Depending on How You Feel About Lost Lands, Stray Cellphones, Creatures from the Sky, Parents Who Disappear in Peru, a Man Named Lars Farf, and One Other Story We Couldn't Quite Finish, So Maybe You Could Help Us Out, from the editors at McSweeney’s

The title tells you everything about this book of short stories by famous authors like Neil Gaiman and Lemony Snicket. McSweeney's is an Internet humor site, whose contributors also often write short stories and add their unique spin on politics and everyday things at the website.

Speaking With the Angel, edited by Nick Hornby

From the author of High Fidelity comes this collection of tales to benefit the UK-based TreeHouse, a school for autistic children (Hornby's son is autistic, which is what caused him to set this book up.)

Guys Write for Guys Read, edited by Jon Sciezska

Kids don't read anymore? Here's a great book to get them started, especially boys. This book is a collection of stories by-guys-for-guys, as edited by the author of The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales.

Next Time: Fiction Collections by One Author

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