Thursday, November 17, 2011

New Short Story Collections

A short story is more than just an abbreviated novel, even though it is defined as “a relatively brief fictional narrative in prose”.*  It’s more than a sketch or a tale. A short story has a beginning, a middle and an end; and it often reveals its main character through actions. Another definition describes a short story as a narrative work that can be read in one sitting. Typical short stories range in length from 500 to 12,000 words.

The oldest short story collection from 4000 B.C. comes to us from the ancient Egyptians. Anton Chekov, Edgar Allen Poe and James Joyce are major authors of the genre. The American short story developed its current form at the beginning of the 20thcentury in the hands of O. Henry (William Sidney Porter). Collections of short stories by a single author are found in our Fiction section under the author’s last name. Anthologies, or compilations of works by numerous writers, are in Literature (the 800s).

Book reviewers, literary critics and librarians tend to like short stories more than members of the general reading public do. But this fall a number of new short story collections have received starred reviews. They are worth a look. With a busy holiday season fast approaching you might find that shorter works fit into your hectic schedule. Click on the link below to check for specific titles and availability.

*(from A Handbook to Literature by William Harmon and C. Hugh Holman)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The CSO - Upcoming Programs and Our Collection

If you're going to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in November or December, you can use the link below to find recordings of some of the concert pieces.

CSO Upcoming Concerts (Nov/Dec 2011) - This list links to CD recordings of works to be performed. The list is in order by concert date, and the annotation for each item identifies the program dates and the specific program piece.

Another library source for finding some of the program works is Freegal.  We recommend that you use the advanced search feature and search by composer and title to find them.  Lake Forest Library cardholders can download three free music tracks per week from it.
You may want to read Maestro Muti's recent autobiography, Riccardo Muti : An Autobiography : First the Music, Then the Words.  The Chicago Tribune's John von Rhein says that this book is about "Muti's approach to musical interpretation, within an absorbing account of his formal training and the development of his career, from early music lessons in Naples and Milan, on to his formal arrival at the helm of the CSO last year."

The CSO has declared December as "Mahler Month," so the library has created this list of titles about Mahler and his works:  Gustav Mahler

Happy listening and reading.