Thursday, December 07, 2006

Back to short stories

I've just finished the Short Story Collection All the King's Horses which is the collection of winners from the Fish Historical Short Story Prize. I can understand why they were chosen (I'd put all of them as an A or the occasional B), but there are one or two I just don't like. Don't like the style. Don't like the approach. I think one of them is particularly 'tricksy' Oh, and it was in First too. Most of the stories were, or in 'tight Third.'

I don't think I would have chosen All the King's Horses by Jo Campbell (Agincourt) as the winner, as I think it's too spare. But it certainly has something about it, and finishes very neatly. I particularly liked Russian Tea by Emma Darwin (about Russian emigres in London), as it just flowed so easily, but perhaps is not substantive enough to come first. Vanishing Point by Hugo Kelly (set in a Soviet gulag) was grimly excellent, came 2nd, and I think that may have come first in my book.

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