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Points of View: Revised Edition Mass Market Paperback – August 1, 1995
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Top Customer Reviews
There is much to learn and much to enjoy here. However I missed there not being a story from my own personal favorite story-writer Isaac Bashevis Singer.
Literature by its very nature is open-ended and difficult to organize in a truly systematic or conclusive way. You can classify literary writings by culture of origin, historical period, or movement, e.g. Romanticism; yet each work is entirely individual and has something unique to say that cannot be subsumed under any classificatory heading.
The editors of this anthology made the choice of *voice* to organize their selections. From what and whose point of view does the author unravel his or her story? This volume offers one relatively concrete way to approach fiction reading and make it fit a bit more tidily into a curriculum of more easily systematized subjects, like chemistry, statistics, even foreign language learning. Yet "point of view" is only the take-off point. The real value in good literature, of which these stories are outstanding representative examples, is the story, the message, the language, all of which leave technical issues behind in a cloud of dust once you are drawn in to the author's world.
This is probably the best collection of short stories in English I have read. Each one of the stories cuts to the quick on themes of love, hate, separation, reunion, guilt, and death. Some are by familiar authors, who I'd first read in junior high school, others were completely new to me. At no point was I reading just to finish the book; I savored each work. My favorites include pieces by Dorothy Parker, Fyodor Dostoevski, Daniel Keyes, Cynthia Rich (sister of Adrienne), Frank O'Conner, Jean Stafford, Guy de Maupassant, and Saul Bellow.Read more ›
Since I had the book out any way, I re-read the story mentioned on the forum, "Flowers for Algernon", then decided to read the three my MIL had noted as "good" (Updike and Joyce) and "very good" (Dorothy Parker). And then I just kept going :-)
I think this book was originally intended as a text book since the short stories are divided into groups based on the point of view used (i.e., interior monologue, letter narration, etc) with a brief introduction to each section discussing the POV . Don't let that put you off. It may be educational but it is highly enjoyable to read these (very short) short stories by some of the greatest authors that ever lived.
If you find some classic authors too daunting, this is a great opportunity to "meet" them in a less intimidating format. Can't quite bring yourself to jump into "Crime and Punishment"? Here's a chance to enjoy Dostoevsky's delightful "A Novel in Nine Letters". It can also give you a different perspective on some authors. "In Cold Blood"¨ or "Breakfast at Tiffany's" may be the only things you've read by Truman Capote so "My Side of the Matter" will be a complete surprise.
I do have to say that the stories in this book were chosen for their point of view not because they represented the authors best work. That's always a subjective call but I enjoy Parker's poems and reviews more than her short stories and of her short stories I admired "The Leave" more than the example here (although it is brilliant).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The previous version was stronger. However, this version has some great reads. Try to read "Doby's Gone" or "The Stone Boy" without being moved.Published 25 days ago by Rachel Nichols
A great primer demonstrating different styles of writing and story types.Published 1 month ago by Crystal Hubbard
Far from pedantic, this book is an essential part of every writer's library. It was suggested reading for a workshop at the Iowa Summer Writing Festival which in itself is quite a... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Michael H. Tidemann
Purchased for a class, ended up keeping for my personal library. This is a great collection of short stories. The paper back and size of it makes it a great companion for travel.Published 9 months ago by Hanna Sims
This is not my favorite short story anthology. A much better collection of stories is found in Short Story Masterpieces edited by Robert Penn Warren and Albert Erskine.Published 11 months ago by c2