The years from 1930 to 1955 marked a high point in the fortunes of the English short story. Inevitably World War II left its mark on many of the stories Derek Hudson has collected in this suberb volume, but, he argues in the introduction, that “the dominating impression in these English stories…is of humour — not necessarily in the comic sense…but in the sense…of a humorous perspective of life.”
The volume includes stories by such renowned writers as Somerset Maugham, Virginia Woolf, and Evelyn Waugh. Stories by Elizabeth Bowen, Frances Towers, Clemence Dane, Rosamond Lehmann, and A.L. Barker demonstrate that women writers have found the short story form increasingly congenial. C.S. Forester and Graham Greene bring their power of narrative to tragic themes, while Eric Linklater asserts his claim on poetic fantasy. The volume also contains characteristic stories by H.E. Bates, V.S. Pritchett, William Plomer, John Moore, Christopher Sykes, William Sansom, Fred Urquhart, and Nigel Kneale.
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