Monday, November 10, 2014

Five Recommended Short Story Collections & Anthologies from 2014

Over at Spinetingler we'll be doing our annual Best of the Year post (we usually post closer to the end of the calender year). In the lead up to that post I'll be using my time here at Do Some Damage to pull together some recommended reading lists for short story collections and anthologies, non-fiction books, comics, re-issues, and straight up crime fiction.

Sixteen Small Deaths by Christopher J Dwyer (Perfect Edge)

After reading When October Falls a couple of years ago Dwyer was marked as one to watch out for. So I was happy to get a copy of Sixteen Small Deaths. The stories contain interesting moments and a perspective close in line with some of the other recent emerging crime writers from a couple of online scenes of the last few years. Still worth keeping an eye on and his stories are worth checking out.

Scream Queen and Other Tales of Menace by Ed Gorman (Perfect Crime Books)

Gorman is a pro. Which means he is master of turning out highly polished gems of stories. And that is exactly what we have here. 

The Downriver Horseshoe by Scott Miles (Stolen Time Publishing)

Probably my favorite collection of the year. It has a working class vibe that is sorely missing from a lot of fiction and Miles writes really interesting characters in interesting situations. 

Trouble in the Heartland: An Anthology of Stories Inspired by the Songs of Bruce Springsteen

Bruce Springsteen and crime fiction go hand in hand, in fact some of his best songs are straight up crime fiction. So this is a match made in heaven.  In fact, the idea of pairing Springsteen and crime fiction shorts is so good it's been done before (Meeting Across the River). Like any anthology there are hits and some misses.  This one comes out in a few weeks and is a must read for fans of crime fiction and of Bruce Springsteen.

The New Black: A Neo-Noir Anthology (Dark House Press)

I disagree with the "noir" discussion that surrounds this anthology, the stories' relationship to the theme, and its editor's take on the subject (here and in other places). But. There are some strong stories by some strong writers here so it is still worth recommending even if it is problematic. It looks like there has recently been a price drop on the Kindle version (now $4.99, but don't know for how long) so check it out for yourself.

I never read as much short fiction as I'd lik and still have other collections and anthologies on my tbr so this isn't a best of. What collections and anthologies from 2014 did you like?

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