Over the last few months, I’ve become a bit obsessed with reading short stories. Here are some more that I have enjoyed reading and teaching. I came across quite a few of the stories whilst reading Redefining English for the More Able by Ian Warwick and Ray Speakman, which is fantastic.
A terrified and traumatised man recounts a story of how he was captured by German soldiers in the Pacific. He tells of his escape, and how he awoke in a strange aquatic landscape where he found an unsettling monolith, covered in ancient, alien hieroglyphics. Tormented by his experience, he seems on the edge of madness.
In Omelas, the people are happy and live a utopian existence free from hardship and worry. The only problem is that this blissful state depends upon the suffering of a little child.
Two men, one old and one young, go to watch Notts County play Bristol City. Written in the 1950’s, The Match is a grim and bleak tale that explores fate and determinism.
As the sun beats down on Kew gardens, people walk and talk, providing us with snippets of their lives.
A nurse works in a chaotic, First World War military hospital.
A group of boys build and race trolley karts in the streets. This story has a rich and distinctive narrative voice and a shocking ending.
Eveline is a young woman who dreams of leaving her grim, poverty-stricken Dublin existence to follow her boyfriend to Buenos Aires.
Every weekend, Bridie goes to the local dance in search of romance. This is a story about loneliness and reluctant compromises, filled with lost characters and outsiders.
An eerie tale of space horror, Smear describes the lonely journey of a single human as he travels through space. The story explores the blurred lines between humanity and artificial intelligence, maintaining an unsettling tone throughout.