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Selected Stories (Wordsworth Classics) [Paperback]

O. Henry
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
Price: £1.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Book Description

1 Mar 1995 Wordsworth Classics

With a new Introduction by Professor Cedric Watts, M.A., Ph.D.


This selection of a hundred of O. Henry’s succinct tales displays the range, humour and humanity of a perennially popular short-story writer.

Here Henry gives a richly colourful and exuberantly entertaining panorama of social life, ranging from thieves to tycoons, from the streets of New York to the prairies of Texas.

These stories are famed for their ‘trick endings’ or ‘twists in the tail’: repeatedly the plot twirls adroitly, compounding ironies. Indeed, O. Henry’s cunning plots surpass those of the ingenious rogues he creates. His style is genial, lively and witty, displaying a virtuoso’s command of language and allusion.

This great collection offers delights for the mind, imagination and emotions.

Frequently Bought Together

Selected Stories (Wordsworth Classics) + The Best Short Stories (Wordsworth Classics) + The Collected Short Stories Of Saki (Wordsworth Classics)
Price For All Three: £5.77

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Product details

  • Paperback: 768 pages
  • Publisher: Wordsworth Editions Ltd; New Ed edition (1 Mar 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1853262412
  • ISBN-13: 978-1853262418
  • Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 12.8 x 4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 194,073 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

About the Author

William Sydney Porter (1862-1910) published all of his work--a novel and some 300 short stories--under the pseudonym 0. Henry. His talent for vivid caricature, local tone, narrative agility, and compassion tempered by irony made him a vastly popular writer in the last decade of his life. He was born in Greensboro, North Carolina, to ordinary middle-class parents and worked in an uncle's drugstore as a youth, becoming a certified pharmacist. Like many Southerners after the Civil War, he sought his fortune in the West, holding various jobs (newspaper work, clerking in a land office, a teller at an Austin bank). Charged with embezzlement in 1894, he fled to Honduras, returning in 1897 to be with his ill and dying wife. His conviction was caused more by his eluding trial than by the conflicting evidence of theft. In the Ohio State Penitentiary (1898-1901), he began to write the stories that made him famous. He moved to New York, remarried, and kept his identity a secret from all but a few friends. He is buried in Asheville, North Carolina. He is universally honored for his mastery of the short story and for his humane spirit.Guy Davenport, a critic and writer of fiction, is best known for two books of essays, The Geography of the Imagination and Every Force Evolves a Form. He has published seven collections of short stories and numerous translations of early Greek poets and playwrights. Now retired, he was a professor of English at the University of Kentucky from 1964 to 1990. He is also a painter and illustrator. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1900's Damon Runyon 13 Aug 2004
By Ken
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought this book on impulse and it has only dissapointed me in one respect. I skipped the introduction and jumped straight to the stories. I thought I was being clever when I compared it to Runyon's stories of 4 decades later. When I went back to read the introduction, the comparison had made there already. In all other respects I cannot fault the book.
The stories are very short. They are generally gentle, charming stories by someone who obviously had a great sympathy for the people he was describing.
I highly recommend it to anyone.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An artist in minature 23 July 2010
By Jean F
Some short story collections read like literary off cuts. Quickies run out to order by novellists are not the same as well crafted miniature works designed to fill their frames. All would-be short story writers should be made to read these tales and learn from the great American master.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Even if many stories reflect the 1910's America the very fact that it's about human values, relations and "Surprises", it's even fresh in 2000's. Many stories, which we heard as short quickies are here by this great author. This a must to have for those who want some thing to tingle there heart, emotions and head.
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4.0 out of 5 stars O Henry 20 Jun 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very enjoyable and brings back memories of when I first read him as a teenager - which was a long time ago
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5.0 out of 5 stars Retro Reading! 21 Dec 2013
By drhugh
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
O. Henry's writing was intended for adult audiences, but because the stories were published in the newspaper they are quite suitable for middle-school readers. I bought this for my grand-children.
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5.0 out of 5 stars On of the greatest short story authors. 30 Nov 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
O Henry is my favourite short story author. I downloaded this book to read to my year 7 form. They love the surprise endings.
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