Anti-Story is great. A sizable portion (arguably most) of seminal postmodern short story writers are represented here, at a much lower cost than you might expect (I can imagine a comparable Norton anthology running something like forty or fifty dollars). In addition, the editor has organized the stories according to what convention of fiction he thinks they break, and how he thinks they get away with it. In the process, he makes an argument as to what a conventional story is, and how a story that breaks with convention can maintain a reader's interest. This organization, more than anything, makes Anti-Story useful for people interested in how short stories work, and why experimental fiction might be notable or worthwhile. If you teach, the organization could also help you integrate this material into a course, as the book provides such a strong context from which to begin a discussion. If you like this kind of stuff, you need this book. Buy it.
Fun, absurd, different
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 20 years ago
As with most experimental fiction some of the stories really blew me away while others did absolutely nothing for me. But in this case the good outweighed the bad - and even the bad were at least original. I especially enjoyed the stories by Barth, Disch, Ionesco and Landolfi.
The best academic anthology of experimental fiction
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 22 years ago
Over the years, I have used Stevick's book as a reader in several fiction classes I have taught, and it is simply the best, most clearly organized and well thought-out anthology of experimental fiction available. I would love to see it expanded and updated, but even as is, it is thought-provoking and generates wonderful class discussions about the possibilities writers have for deviating from the Aristotelean template. Bravo!
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