Short Story Collections

Anthologies conjure thoughts of large collections of short stories by authors you mostly don't know of.  You'll read story after story. Some good some bad.  But I don't really want to talk about those.  I'm curious if there is a name for those short story collections that are usually no longer than a novel in length. They only contain around four stories all usually with the same theme. Understand what I'm talking about? I'm reviewing two below. What would you call these?

Title: Many Bloody Returns
Authors: Various, Charlaine Harris, Jim Butcher, and Kelley Armstrong highlighted.Genre: Paranormal, romance, short stories
Source: Library

This collection has the over arching theme of birthdays.  Some have a stronger connection to the theme than others. Some of the stories are new, or in worlds that are new to me, while others are happily familar. For example: I'm positive I've read the Charlaine Harris' story before....Eric's excited about Dracula's birthday. It's a fun lil vignette that gives a side to Eric's character that isn't often seen in the novels.  This whole collection is a fun read, but nothing phenomenal.

Title: Love at First Bite
Authors: Sherrilyn Kenyon, LA Banks, Susan Squires, and Ronda Thompson
Genre: Paranomal, romance, short stories
Source: Library

This collection only has the four stories, and they are all in worlds I've yet to set eyes on. This is partly why I chose to read this collection. I've heard good things about each author but for whatever reason haven't picked up their books.  Three of the stories are about vampires and one is werewolfs.  Generally, I really enjoyed this collection. While there was one story that I just had trouble getting odd mix of Hispanic and Native legends smashed with a coming of age vampire hunter story.......I did enjoy the experience on the whole. I've even added Ronda Thompson's Wulf series to my library request list.  This is a great collection to find a new favorite author from.


Allison said...

I think I would still call a book of a few short stories anthologies -- because they come from various authors.

I am not a huge fan of short stories. It takes me about as much time to bond with the characters as it does the pages in a short story. By the time I am hooked, the story is over. Then what? :)

I love how those novels know what sells. Sherrilyn Kenyon's name is all huge and then it's the three other authors I've never heard of (or probably anyone else), LOL. Same with the first (Charlaine Harris -- everybody knows who she is..) but the others? Not so much. Though Kelley Armstrong.. she does the Vampire Diaries? Or the Vampire Academy.. or something like that.

Mandy said...

I generally feel the same way about short stories, although I've found that if I can get into a short story I will most likely really enjoy the series it is part of. They definitely do know their marketing though! I love the trend of putting the author's name larger than the titles. (rolls eyes)

marieb said...

I hate when an author writes a short story and then makes it impossible to get to unless you but the anthology and then refers to it in a series, especially when it is an important plot point in the scope of the series. Ok so that had to have been a run-on. Charlaine Harris did this in her Sookie Stackhouse series...not this anthology though. I also love Sherrilyn Kenyon and her other pen name...can't remember it. That is a highlander series and is pure brain candy.

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