A little love note

So I’ve been sick as a dog this week—and am finally feeling better today, thank goodness. Alex was so sweet to come home early, put Toby to sleep, bring me Gatorade, make me a bland dinner (toast with said Gatorade) and lie in bed and read to me. The last time I was this sick (almost five years ago), he read me “The Diamond as Big as the Ritz” by F. Scott Fitzgerald, which was creepy and wonderful, but this year I couldn’t find any short stories so he read from Bird by Bird. Thank you, Alex; I love you.

(The experience also taught me that it’s really nice to read stories in bed. Do you have any favorite books of short stories? I’d LOVE to hear…)

P.S. Toby’s reaction.

(Photo of our bedroom by Oh Darling Photography)

  1. He reads to you!? How amazingly sweet is that. Love it.

  2. That rug. I am dying! Hope you’re feeling better too!

  3. Nice pictures

  4. two amazing short story collections: cowboys are my weakness by pam houston, and interpreter of maladies by jhumpa lahiri–they are totally different and both amazing.

  5. ugh hope you feel better. i am off work with the flu :( only been out of bed for a couple of hours (and it’s 9,30pm at night my time). there is no one to look after me but my dog who has spent the day with his head on my back or stomach giving me cuddles even now whilst i’m reading thru the internet hes sat right next to me.

  6. I love Alice Munro’s short stories. I have a lovely memory from many years ago of a friend reading Chaim Potok to me on the banks of a river one summer day. He’s since died, so I get a bit misty thinking back to that day. I read aloud with my children constantly, though my 3-year-old has a gift for picking all the books that make me want to tear my hair out when repeatedly (Thank you Sesame Street :) )

  7. Sorry for my English, I’m improving it. But I really like when somebody who loves you do this kind of sweet things. I fell in love with my boyfriend when he read me “The Eyes of My Brother, Forever” by Stefan Zweig, it was winter and he was reading me this book in a garden where the river used to stay.

  8. Battleborn by Claire Vaye Watkins is stunning.

  9. You might like “Winesburg, Ohio” by Sherwood Anderson. It’s a novel, but the stories of people are broken up in short story format. They all fit together, but they don’t need to be read all together! It’s one of my favorites :-)

  10. i always insist on reading aloud from whatever book i have on the go to my husband as he falls asleep, only a page or two..
    a few years ago on vacation he read me ‘all my friends are superheros’ by andrew kaufman while i ate dill pickle chips and watched the waves. it’s only about 100 pages and really sweet.

  11. Reading aloud is such a lovely, intimate thing. When I teach, it is my favorite time of day, and the children adore it as well. I feel incredibly close to them when we’re all caught up in the same story together.

    My boyfriend has read “Winter’s Tale” by Mark Halperin to me in bed, as well as a sweet children’s book (at my request) called The Penderwicks. He’s a teacher, as well as a trained actor, so I feel spoiled by the quality of my read-alouds :)

    As far as recommendations, I’d go with “The Lover’s Dictionary” by David Levithan. It’s a clever novella composed of short vignettes told in the style of dictionary entries.

  12. my kids (9/7/1,5)love when I read their bed time stories …so does my husband. At the moment it’s Narnia stuff for the older kids and Agassi’s autobiography for my hubby. Halas no one reads to me..

  13. The sweetest photo and post about exceptional everyday love. Made my heart full. (love that Toby reaction!!!)

  14. I think Hemingway’s short stories are really good. I also often read essays by Joseph Brodsky before going to bed when I’m sad.

    • oh! I love Brodski! his poems as well as his stories.

  15. Joanna, I have to ask: how do you stay so healthy? FIVE YEARS between illnesses? That’s great! If you have a secret, I’d love to know it.

    James also likes to read me stories. We read the ones in the New Yorker, even though most of the time we turn to each other at the end and say, “That was WEIRD.” I also love anything by Jhumpa Lahiri.

  16. Also, “The Golden Key” and “The Wise Woman” (and everything else) by George MacDonald. He was an inspiration to CS Lewis, Madeleine L’Engle, J.R.R. Tolkien, and more. Beautiful fairy stories.

  17. You’ll love “Roman Fever” by Edith Wharton or “Bernice Bobs Her Hair” by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

  18. Anything by Truman Capote, Vladimir Nabokov or Claire Keegan.

  19. I love short stories, too. My favourite, which I read over and over again, is The Most Beautiful Book in the World, Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt.

  20. This is so sweet of your husband. Being ill is the worst so for someone to make things a little bit easier is just lovely.x

  21. I’m glad you are feeling better! I love thumbing through Whitman’s “Leaves of Grass”.

  22. I just thought of another one The Lone Surfer of Montana Kansas by Davy Rothbart

  23. My boyfriend and I love reading short stories out loud too! Our favorite is Vonnegut’s Welcome to the Monkey House. We took turns reading the stories out loud during a camping trip last year. The story Harrison Bergeron is especially wonderful. I hope you feel better, Joanna!

  24. Reading to another person who is accustomed to multiple forms of info stimuli is an art, so choose your novel wisely…depends on the audience. For the “Not easily Entertained, I’d read Justin Cronin, “The Passage” guaranteed to make them pee the bed. For the easily amused, Tina Fey, “Bossy Pants”, and for the middle of the road – who like excellent fiction, try “The Kite Runner”, nothing beats a well written, well told, well scripted story that makes your heart break at some point or another.

    my 2 cents. read on…


  25. LV says...

    J. California Cooper, Sandra Cisneros and J.D Salinger all have great short story compilations. There is nothing like enjoying a great story in bed. Its even better with warm chocolate chip cookies and coffee.

  26. are you preggers? :)

  27. Also any of the Glass family stories by J.D. Salinger.

  28. How We Are Hungry by Dave Eggers is my favorite.

  29. My favorite collection of stories is “How to Breathe Underwater” by Julie Orringer. Every story is great!

    • I will second this– that book is wonderful.

  30. We love short stories in our house. Have you heard of Sips Card? Short Stories or poems meant to last as long as your cup of coffee?

  31. Joanna,

    Sorry to hear you’ve been ill and thanks for the heroic effort in keeping up with your posts!

    A fantastic read in bed: M.R. James ghost stories. Classic supernatural tales, just spinechilling enough :)

    Get well soon


  32. Glad you’re feeling better!!! Being sick is no fun!!

  33. Hi Jo!

    I’m only commenting because I JUST finished reading this NYTimes article ( before checking out your posts from today.

    I know everyone has her own specifications for what delimits safe food ingredients, so I rarely ever share articles like this, especially because most of us have done the research we deem appropriate to make sure we’re comfortable with what we’re eating. But just in case this is useful for you (as many of your sunscreen and organic veggie posts were me!) I thought I might point out Gatorade’s position the crosshairs of the food additive safety debate..

    Whatever your position, I hope you’re feeling better!

    • Oops! Looks like I’m a little tardy to the party with the NYTimes share – sorry if it seemed I was pushing the issue!

      My twin sister when I was sick a few months ago read me chapters from The Phantom Tollbooth, which is hands down our favorite book. I love reading things like that when I’m feeling sick — they are technically for kids, but have plenty of places adults can appreciate them. :)

  34. I really enjoy Dorothy Parker’s Complete Stories. (There are probably numerous versions). I have the Penguin Classics one. So wry, witty, and intelligent.

  35. That is so sweet and romantic. We’ve all been sick in our house too and it’s the absolute worst! Love “Toby’s reaction.” That’s exactly my daughters attitude too lol

  36. JD Salinger’s Nine Stories is great, as is Murkami’s The Elephant Vanishes. My sweetie and I read a whole (loong) book together last year–Murakami’s 1Q84. It was fun!

  37. Oh! My fiance and I love reading short stories and poetry together…
    Some of our favorites include: Raymond Carver (short stories and poetry; very honest and direct yet beautiful writing), Flannery O’Connor, Mary Gaitskill (both for short stories).
    Also, Sandra Cisneros’ “The House on Mango Street” is a collection of vignettes that are lovely read together or separately.
    Lastly, I just finished Sharon Olds’ poetry collection titled “The Father,” which is about her father’s death. I wouldn’t call myself an avid poetry reader but I loved it. She writes of her relationship with her father in a tender, sometimes blunt way. Her descriptions of the human body are simply wonderful.

  38. Any of Wendell Berry’s stories are fantastic. Watch with Me and Six Other Stories are particularly great for reading out loud: so funny! So sweet! So charming!

    My husband and I started reading Willa Cather’s Death Comes for the Archbishop aloud on our honeymoon, as we went to Santa Fe. Not short stories, but broken into short chapters, so nice for reading aloud.

  39. I really love Lori Moore’s short story collections: Self Help and Birds of America are two.

  40. Feel better! It seems that everyone has caught something lately. Yuck!
    In all honesty I don’t think I like short stories. However, I have never given them a fair chance. I love reading and devour books. I have always thought I didn’t like short stories because I was sure I’d tear through the too quickly. Maybe I should give them a chance!!

  41. Feel better!!!! Maybe you’re preggers! ;)

  42. Pregnant?

  43. I’m currently reading “The Elephant Vanishes” by Haruki Murakami. It’s wonderful! Feel better soon.

  44. My heart melts, that is so incredibly sweet! I don’t know that my husband has ever read to me, but he is always at my beck and call when I’m sick (and vice versa of course). Feel better!!!

    Strive to Thrive,

  45. I hope you’re feeling better and a bit stronger everyday. You’re husband is so sweet. I love it when my guy will make me food and watch TV with me when I’m sick, who doesn’t love a little babying ;)

  46. Wow! so many wonderful books. Glad that your much better! Emma Straub has a book of short stories ‘Other People We Married’, which is very good.

  47. MK says...

    Gosh, I’ve been sick this week also! I recommend Sloane Crosley’s essay collection entitled I Was Told There’d Be Cake. Sweet and silly New York-based humor.

  48. feel better soon!!

    i have begged my husband for years to tell me stories when i’m sick and in bed, and he has yet to do it – maybe if i bought him a book of short stories, he would at least read to me? :)

  49. aww. love is so sweet. hope you’re on the mend and feeling better in no time.

  50. Boyfriend and I read in bed (or rather I do) aloud every night. WE’re working on The Mind of the South by W. J. Cash. Probably the best way to understand the South, why it is the way it is, and where it’s going.

  51. My hubby and I love reading aloud Roald Dahl’s The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six Others. My fave is “The Boy who Talked with Animals”.

  52. If you like the Anthony Doerr, check out his “Four Seasons in Rome”. Nonfiction, but short chapters, and it’s one of my all time favorites.

  53. Not sure how we caught the same muthableeping,miserable cold (mine has turned into a sinus infection and bronchitis) because you are in New York and I’m in Florida. Who gets sick in Florida?

    Any book by Alice Munro. She’s a genis!

  54. I love short stories! I have a big O Henry anthology, and it’s great for reading out loud because his stories are always have such unexpected/hilarious endings. He wrote “The Gift of the Magi” (which my dad would always read aloud on Christmas eve after church!) and the “Ransom of Red Chief.”

    I love when you do book recs! I might be getting a Kindle for Christmas so this is perfect :_

  55. how sweet. hope you feel better! x

  56. Glad to hear you’re getting better! I recommended this on Twitter but also strongly suggest The Theory of Light and Matter by Andrew Porter if you like short stories. He was my writing professor in undergrad (and was one of my favorites!) and it won the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction in 08. He just released his first novel, In Between Days, this year and I am hoping it is waiting under the tree for me this year at Christmas. :)

  57. Not exactly a book of short stories, but a novella, (56 pages, I believe, I downloaded it on Kindle) ‘Cats and Dogs’ by Norm Augustinus. It takes place in Michigan and is laugh out loud hilarious. Hope you feel better.

  58. I really loved “Where the God of Love Hangs Out” by Amy Bloom. The way she writes love and relationships is amazing. Feel better!

  59. I’m sure you’ve already read this one, but I love The Umbrella Man by Roald Dahl. I’m a Roald lover as well. :)

  60. Oh yes! I am reading ‘The Country of the Blind and Other Stories’ right now and it’s fantastic, each story is better than the last.
    Sorry you haven’t been well. X.

  61. My husband and I have been reading Grimm’s Fairy Tales (we downloaded them free from Project Gutenberg) to each other in bed. We read a few stories each night and it’s been my favorite thing lately. I just read a tale about a cat who lied about being a Godmother so she could sneak a pot filled with fat. They are all so ridiculous, funny, and great.

  62. This year’s book of the Best American Short Stories is fantastic. I always read the collection every year and like it, but I loved it this year! It’s a great variety of funny and moving stories. Jhumpa Lahiri is one of my favorite short story writers. She has two books of short stories out- The Interpreter of Maladies and Unaccustomed Earth . Both are fantastic. I also second St. Lucy’s Home for Girls. They are surrealist stories that are imaginative and fun.

    Feel better soon!

  63. J. D. Salinger’s Nine Stories is terrific.

  64. I hope I’m not being one of those annoying people but Gatorade has brominated vegetable oil in it which is banned in Europe and soon Japan. Drink some herbal tea, or a glass of water with some lemon..anything but this. If I was there I would make you some good chicken foot stock and make you drink that – it cures everything. Have you read The Sisters Brothers? Each chapter is only a few pages long which makes it easy to read. I read it aloud to my husband. It’s a very good book!

  65. Sounds like you’re one lucky girl!
    I like to read the David Sedaris short stories such as “Squirrel seeks Chipmunk”. *chuckle*

  66. Sounds like you’re one lucky girl!
    I like to read the David Sedaris short stories such as “Squirrel seeks Chipmunk”. *chuckle*

  67. A book of Sherlock Holmes mysteries is always a treat to read aloud in bed.

  68. SO typically I prefer novels, but I have really strong feelings about the few short story books that I like. Favorites –
    1. Walk the Blue Fields by Claire Keegan – “An unforgettable array of quietly wrenching stories about despair and desire in the timeless world of modern-day Ireland.” Beatiful and haunting.
    2. St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell -Author of the novel Swamplandia which is also stellar. Such a unique voice and talented story teller.
    3. A Natural History of the Senses by Diane Ackerman – “…lusciously written grand tour of the realm of the senses includes conversations with an iceberg in Antarctica and a professional nose in New York, along with dissertations on kisses and tattoos, sadistic cuisine and the music played by the planet Earth.” (Non-fiction) I love opening this book to a random page and reading whatever is in front of me. Each essay is a little treat.

    Get well soon!

  69. Get well soon!

  70. Second the Nine Stories. My husband gave me a copy of a compilation called New York Stories from the New Yorker, edited by David Remnick. I’m not usually big on compilations, but I love picking this one up and just getting a little hit of something unexpected. It’s also just the thing when I am missing NYC. (I now live in L.A.)

    Feel better

  71. So glad you are starting to feel better!

    I LOVE Roald Dahl’s short stories- they are thrilling and creepy and horrible and some are strangely beautiful. So fun.

  72. So many great suggestions! Add Other People We Married by Emma Straub, The Book of Life by Stuart Nadler, The Collected Works of Lydia Davis, Yesterday’s Weather by Anne Enright, and anything by Flannery O’Connor to the list. Also, The Anchor Book of New American Short Stories. Okay. Done.

  73. Love your rug Joanna!:)

  74. this is really wonderful. i look so forward to a love like this!

    i hope you are feeling better!

  75. I hope you feel better soon dear :)
    I have been wanting to read this book Bird by bird for so long!…How is it? I heard it is really good and helps to improve writing.

  76. Reading Pete Hamil’s the Christmas Kid now, which paints such a vivid portrait of Brooklyn in the 70s and 80s. Also, anything my Neil Gaiman on audiobooks is excellent. He’s a wonderful narrator of his own work, which is rare.

    And I’m so glad to see you’re reading Baked Explorations! I hope you have a copy of their latest cookbook, Baked Elements.

  77. Fierce Pajamas and/or Disquiet Please! – Both are short humor pieces from past issues of the New Yorker. It’s an anthology of essays. You get a lot of great writers in there like Woody Allen, David Sedaris, Veronica Geng, Steve Martin, Christopher Buckley etc. They will definitely make you laugh and are great to have around.

    After all, laughter IS the best medicine ;) (sorry, I couldn’t resist)

  78. I’m a long lurker, never commenter, but I’m so obsessed with this collection I had to jump in: Delicate Edible Birds, by Lauren Groff. The prose is so beautiful, and each one just leaves you sitting there like: whoa. What just happened? One of the stories is available free online if you’d like a sneak preview – it contains, I think, as much as many novels do within its few pages. It’s here:

  79. a little piece of happiness : )

  80. I love Barbara Kingsolvers short stories. Small wonder or high tide in Tucson. Feel better.

  81. That is truly so sweet…. I love it.


  82. Sorry you were sick!
    Anytime I need to keep my mind occupied while sick or cleaning, etc., I listen to “This American Life” (they have an EXCELLENT app!!) or “Stuff You Should Know” or “On Being” podcasts.

  83. Alex reading aloud to you reminds me of this Daily Beast post on the intimacy of being read to as an adult :)

    I also recommend the collection of short stories The Worst Years of Your Life: Stories for the Geeked-Out, Angst-Ridden, Lust-Addled, and Deeply Misunderstood Adolescent in All of Us, edited by Mark Jude Poirier. It has Julie Orringer’s “Note to Sixth-Grade Self,” probably my favorite short story, told in the second person as a grown-up looking back and giving advice to her (yup) sixth-grade self. It’s poignant. I’m also convinced it spawned all those magazine articles featuring celebrities writing to their younger selves.

  84. Dorothy Parker and Philip K. Dick have fabulous short stories that are great for reading out loud. My husband reads to me from the passenger seat while I drive on long trips, it’s such fun. Feel better!

  85. Interpreter of Maladies and Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri (I liked Unaccustomed Earth better). But be warned, these stories will gut you. So emotional.

  86. So glad you’re feeling better! Being sick is the pits.

    My favorite book of short stories (right now) is Annie Dillard’s Teaching A Stone to Talk. She is a genius. (honorable mention to In Fact: The Best of Creative Nonfiction)

    My favorite book to read when I’m sick or to read to those who are, or to children or to anyone who will sit still long enough to listen is Animal Family by Randall Jarrell. It is so simple and sweet and lovely.

    Enjoy the holidays, now that you’re well!

  87. i’m home sick too this week; it’s the worst!

    my boyfriend and i have the same ritual; we read from old H.P. Lovecraft and M.R. James books that we’ve picked up at antique stores or book fairs. there’s something both nostalgic and very adult about reading together in bed.

    oddly, this exact tradition of reading to each other (or lack thereof) was a catalyst for the end of a previous relationship of mine. i had been dating one of those All American Jerk types for years, who considered himself a jock and videogame connoisseur. one night, while getting ready for bed, he mocked me for wanting to spend time quietly reading. the next day as a co-worker told me how she and her boyfriend were taking turns reading chapters of a book to each other each night before bed, i realized i would never have that with this man. and for whatever reason, it was the final straw. i’d already made the mistake of giving up much of myself to fit into a mold of who his All American Jerk wanted me to be. but the idea that this man would never want to read to me, well it was enough. i deserved someone and a future, where that was a possibility. we broke up the next week.

    a very long way of saying that i completely understand how cherished and lovely this ritual is. i’m happy i fought for it, and waited for a man who would share in, and treasure it with me.

    glad to hear you’re on the mend!

  88. What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, Raymond Carver. Molly Ivins Can’t Say That, Can She?, Molly Ivins.

    • YES!

  89. Love to be read stories
    Canadian authors are among my favorite story tellers.

  90. I had surgery last week and my guy took the best care of me…it was so sweet! He even missed his beloved monday night football to rub my back while I was feeling bad:) I love the short story idea…I’ll have to look into your list above!

  91. I struggle with insomnia and my husband reads to me from The Odyssey to help me fall asleep. It makes my mind wonder off on an adventure and I fall asleep like a baby. It’s the best.

  92. The Collected Short Stories of Saki, you can’t go wrong.

  93. We read the Curious Case of Benjamin Button together aloud before the movie came out.

  94. My husband read The History of Love and Half Broke Horses to me over the course of a couple of weeks. In his voice, his cadence, timing… it was so wonderful to listen. Being told a story is the best :)

  95. “Gravity” by Ann Beattie, one of my favorite writers. Though anything from “Burning House is wonderful.

  96. Ever so S W E E T !

    PS. Next time. Alice Munroe has a new collection of short stories out. She’s the queen of short story writers.

    • I second the Alice Munro suggestion! I’ve read two of her collections so far, hoping to start the new one this weekend.

    • The new Alice Munro is excellent. I keep finding myself rereading one line over and over wonder how anyone could write so beautifully – spare, elegant and powerful.

      Joanna, I also like Michael Chabon’s short stories, the collection “You Know When the Men Are Gone,” anything from the Best American series, anything by Annie Proulx and Jhumpa Lahiri. Short stories are my favorite thing to read.

  97. SO glad you are feeling better. If you like Bird by Bird, you may like some of Anne Fadiman’s books, especially Ex Libris!

    • I’d also highly recommend Anne Fadiman’s collection of essays “At Large and At Small” — such an enjoyable to read. Hope you are feeling better!

  98. When I was small, a close family friend who was a reading teacher would give me the most wonderful books each year for Christmas. The Outspoken Princess and the Gentle Knight was my favourite. It’s a collection of fairy tales with modern sensibilities written by some of the greats (Tanith Lee, Jane Yolen, and others) at various points in the 20th Century. It enchanted me then, and continues to do so now (I read Lee’s story, “Princess Dahli” in the bath just the other day). I’ve also used it in several teaching situations, so I know it appeals to kids, too!

  99. I second the Oschner and Bender recommendations and would add The Dead Fish Museum by Charles D’Ambrosio and anything by Amy Hempel. I hope you feel better soon.

  100. oh, yes! I see that Lorrie Moore is already on your radar in an above comment, but I can not recommend the collection “Self Help” enough. It is heartbreaking and hilarious and so well-written. xo Kim

    PS — Feel better!

  101. My husband *loves* to read me stories, and he’s a storyteller at heart. Last Christmas when we were just engaged, he read aloud The Best Christmas Pageant ever while wearing a headlamp. So endearing.

    Great post. Hope you feel better!

  102. You’re in good hand with Alex and Ms. Anne Lamott. My mother gave me that book for my first day of high school and Plan B later. I honestly think her words could get me thought anything.

    Feel better soon!

    • I feel the same way about Anne :)

  103. You and Alex are so great together! And I hope you’re feeling better soon–there is some nasty stuff going around!

  104. sometimes the best remedies are little things. Where You’ll Find Me: And Other Stories… to add to the list:)

    get well
    xo- Katie

  105. Roald Dahl’s short stories are the BEST! My favorite collection is the Best of Roald Dahl. My parents used to read these when I was a kid (although many of them are very dark and not necessarily good for kids).

  106. My boyfriend and I read almost the entire Harry Potter series together (!). Okay, really it was him reading the entire series to me, and even though that sounds like overkill, it was lovely and wonderful and it’s a memory I’ll always cherish. :)

    • I have the audio books narrated by Stephen Fry. I find them so relaxing that I took them to hospital with me when I had my daughter :)

  107. I love short stories – my boyfriend and I sometimes read to each other from “A Kind of Flying”, a collection of short stories by Ron Carlson. I would highly recommend it.

    I hope you feel better!

  108. So sweet! When I was very sick with bronchitis about 4 years ago, my boyfriend (now fiance) was living in Wyoming and I in Charleston, SC. We’d been long distance for 2 years, and were very used to talking on the phone – but sick on the phone and able to help each other…not so much. I was sooo sick- could barely talk, let alone breathe- and missed him so much. Each night that I was in bed sick, he read me a story or two out of Nine Stories by JD Salinger. It’s always been one of my favorites, but having someone read it to you makes the stories that much better (and that much creepier, too) :) Even though he was over the phone, it felt like he was right there. Nothing sweeter than that!

  109. My husband reads Moby Dick to my son and I before bed. Its actually a really funny book and it has short chapters so its perfect for a sleepy read.

  110. I LOVE The Diamond as Big As The Ritz!! Alex is such a hero. I’m so glad you’re feeling better, Joanna!!

  111. This is so sweet. Reading out loud in bed is such a wonderful experience. My husband just read The BFG out loud to our 5 & 3-year-old boys (one chapter a night) and it was such a bonding experience for them!

  112. I don’t have any suggestions, but do want to say that you are one lucky lady! I only hope to have a husband like Alex one day. I hope you continue to feel better.

  113. I also asked people on twitter and got some amazing recommendations, including Birds of America by Lorrie Moore, St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves by Karen Russell, J.D. Salinger’s Nine Stories, Music for Chameleons by Truman Capote; The Girl in the Flammable Skirt by Amy Bender; Jhumpa Lahiri’s Interpreter of Maladies; Like You’d Understand Anyway by Jim Shepard; The Shell Collector by Anthony Doerr; People I Wanted to Be by Gina Ochsner…

    • Such a great list! Thanks for sharing!

    • Feel better! It’s so hard when you are sick with little ones that depend on you.

      Thanks for the list–short stories are much more manageable at this stage of life:)

    • Everything Jhumpa Lahiri writes is wonderful.

    • Joanna, when you asked for short story recommendations I actually Tweeted at you “F. Scott Fitzgerald!” and here see you’ve already been hot on his trail. I absolutely adore his book of short stories and all of his work. Being from the Twin Cities really seals the deal on my literary love affair with Mr. Fitz!