on 1 July 2003
I favour this edition as you can compare the novella 'The Awakening' which famously ruined Chopin's career for it's supposed 'sordid' theme, with a collection of her other short stories. I much prefer the short stories as they are far more lively and vivid. My particular favourite is the tragic and highly ironic tale 'Désirée's baby'. Chopin gives the reader much food for thought and there appear to be many underlying morals in her stories. As far as 'the Awakening' goes, Chopin seems to be significantly ahead of her time dealing with a number of taboo issues in her story. It's a beautiful piece with plenty of well thought out description, hence her being known as a 'local colourist'. However the novella is perhaps a little too slow and watery at times. Whereas readers back in the day were shocked by the content, the modern reader would be forgiven for getting quite bored at times. Especially as the only sex scene is so well hidden. I actually missed it the first time round! You get the feeling she wrote this book on Sunday afternoons (!) as the tone is so relaxed. I highly recommend this book to readers who don't mind a lack of action but enjoy words and imagery in their own sense.
NB: It's worth looking out for how many times the main character appears to be 'awakened' in the novella - Chopin cleverly links this in a number of times!