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The Lottery and Other Stories (1949)

de Shirley Jackson

Outros autores: Veja a seção outros autores.

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2,880703,613 (4.05)188
The Lottery, one of the most terrifying stories written in this century, created a sensation when it was first published in The New Yorker. "Power and haunting," and "nights of unrest" were typical reader responses. This collection, the only one to appear during Shirley Jackson's lifetime, unites "The Lottery:" with twenty-four equally unusual stories. Together they demonstrate Jack son's remarkable range--from the hilarious to the truly horrible--and power as a storyteller.… (mais)
  1. 30
    What We Talk about When We Talk about Love de Raymond Carver (whitewavedarling)
    whitewavedarling: Similar styles and character types, though Jackson's stories are a bit more developed in regard to character and plot. Both authors have a tendency of working toward endings that leave a reader making final decisions instead of tying everything up fully with a more traditional ending.… (mais)
  2. 10
    Death in Spring de Mercè Rodoreda (bluepiano)
    bluepiano: There's a likeness between 'The Lottery' and Rodoreda's novel inasmuch as both are about disquieting traditional rituals in isolated villages.The latter is of course longer & so more complex, and it's strikingly memorable.
  3. 10
    The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty de Eudora Welty (whitewavedarling)
    whitewavedarling: Welty and Jackson work with similar character types and have similar themes and writing styles. Other than those fans who enjoy Welty primarily for her station in Southern Lit., I'd say that fans of one writer will likely enjoy the short stories of the other.… (mais)

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Last night I was back to being a flopping fish, hooked, but with no sleep in sight. The real killer was that I just couldn’t find a book that worked for me. Then, this morning, I reach into one of my book stacks and pulled out a gem. It was an older book, The Lottery and Other Stories, which carries a 1948 copyright. Many recognize Shirley Jackson as a master of the short story, and her story, "The Lottery," which concludes this collection, is held up by many as one of the very best short stories ever published. That last story is a masterclass in misdirection.

Besides all the great stories, this edition also has the additional plus of having a fine introduction by a favorite writer of mine, A.M. Homes. The introduction started with this telling line. “The world of Shirley Jackson is eerie and unforgettable.“ You would think that these stories would feel somewhat dated, but they still work so well. Sure, if you want, you can find signs of another time, but the stories have so much life to them, who would want to slow down and distract oneself by searching for something like that? Jackson’s stories are many times haunted by the obvious and the hidden. She does such a good job of completely terrifying her readers, as well as giving them page after page of unease and worry. Her stories so often deal with the everyday, but terror loves the backdrop of the everyday. I love this line from Jonathan Lethem about her writing. “Shirley Jackson wrote about the mundane evils hidden in everyday life and about the warring and subsuming of selves in a family, a community and sometimes even in a single mind.” Writing about “The Lottery,” Christopher Morley wrote the following. “A great story, like a great vintage, throws a crust of sediment which may destroy the bouquet and cause ulcers later. If you don’t feel the tweak of ulcers, you haven’t read this story.”

I feel like I’m in a reader’s hog heaven, having read two stellar books in a row, with Jackson’s book following Chris Cander’s spectacular novel, 11 Stories. I’m purposely not finishing the Jackson book right now, so I won’t be flopping and gasping later tonight without a good book. I always have a rough time preemptively “pre-picking” (like “pre-boarding” and my pet peeve from home shows, “pre-drilling” a hole—and why isn’t that followed by “re-drilling” a hole?), as my mood can be ever changing and shifting. And now, I’ve foolishly created the image of being a flopping, gasping, dying fish in the dark of night without a good book in hand … or fin? For all you other addicted readers out there, don’t let that image haunt your thoughts.

But, do read Shirley Jackson for a whole world of disturbing and amazing images that will live on in your mind. And, as A.M. Homes reminds us, “Jackson writes with a stunning simplicity; there is a graceful economy to her prose as she charts the smallest movements, perceptual shifts—nothing pyrotechnic here. Her stories take place in small towns, in kitchens, at cocktail parties.” These twenty-six stories are excellent antidotes to the flopping and gasping brought on by having nothing good to read, but I make no promises that you won’t be flopping and gasping from where her stories take you. The world of the reader has many perils and pleasure … sometimes they are the same. ( )
  jphamilton | Jun 8, 2021 |
Shirley Jackson's highly provocative short story "The Lottery" is just one example of her ability to evoke the bizarre, strange, or sad in the human condition. Like every short story collection, not all in this are winners, but several are thought-provoking and deserving of more fame. I highly recommend "The Daemon Lover," "Flower Garden," "The Dummy," and "Pillar of Salt." And obviously, "The Lottery." My students were *furious* with me for assigning it, because it messed with their minds. I enjoyed that day's class discussion thoroughly, I must admit. ( )
  DrFuriosa | Dec 4, 2020 |
What do you call a person who can be in the middle of a party crowd and feel desperately lonely? A person who wants a partner but floats somewhere even outside the Friend-Zone with everyone? Those who never fit in.....those who don't have a "real" life.....those who live in a fantasy world all their own.....the outsiders who let themselves be used and abused by others? What word symbolizes their lives? Disenfranchised? Socially inept? Abnormal? Invisible people? Weird? Weak? Unusual? Different? Oh holy F.....there is nothing worse than being different (note sarcasm). Even in modern society where we pride ourselves on lauding the diverse and extolling the rights of all......those deemed Different pay a price. Human nature? Society norms?

Shirley Jackson's short story collection - The Lottery and Other Stories -- delves into the feelings, lives and disjointed experiences of those people who live outside the norm. I was pleasantly surprised by this collection of stories. I expected little snippets of ghostly encounters or maybe a bit of light horror.....but I didn't expect a look into the lives of The Separate. I really wanted to read The Lottery. I'd heard of the story so many times, but had never taken the time to actually read it. I'm trying to turn over a new leaf. Instead of saying "Oh, I'd really love to read that'' and then forgetting entirely about the great book or story that caught my interest, I am actually taking the time to read what interests me. So, I initially checked out this book just to read The Lottery. It is, of course, the final story in this collection....and I couldn't just skip over 200 pages of Shirley Jackson's work to get to one story. If I want to experience the author more fully, I need to spend time with a wide selection of her writing, not just the most famous or well-known bits. At first I found the stories weird. I reacted like I do to literary nose-in-air overdone fiction.....oh dear....more stories that make no sense but literature majors love to assign some ethereal meaning to in order to impress tired professors who no longer care. But as I read more.....it turned to "These stories....these people are Weird!'' Weird. Different. Living in the same cities, towns and world as all of us.....but seeing and feeling things differently. A girl who relishes the idea of the end of the world. A man who fixes dinner for a woman who doesn't care if he's alive or not. A woman who finds her job at Macy's ridiculously complicated. The boy who meets a strange old man on the train. A woman who finds herself unable to take back items stolen from her by another. It's the emotion that's important.....the peek into the life of The Separate. In a way it is horror.....society and each of our places in it is pretty scary. Imagine if you really didn't have a place...or if you did, but never found it. Or if you just couldn't function within your parameters at all. Lovely dark stories. I read each one and thought about how it made me feel, what I thought of the characters and their lives, before I moved another story closer to The Lottery.

Shirley Jackson's writing is subtle. It makes you think. She throws emotions and situations out, and then lets them settle into a reader's brain. It's up to each reader to figure out what is significant. I think the story that packed the most punch for me is Like Mother Used To Make. David Turner lives alone. His apartment is Just So....everything in its place, nothing out of order. He cooks lovely meals. He lives a peaceful life. His existence is orderly and tidy. His neighbor Marcia, however, is messy, haphazard and so different from David. But he likes her. So he cooks dinner for her. In the end, he finds himself down the hall from his own warm, orderly apartment, cleaning Marcia's mess while the woman enjoys the company of a co-worker in David's own house, while she pretends the meal and the nice apartment are hers. Wow.....it's really in human nature to wish for what we can't have, to aspire to things either out of our league, out of reach, or even beneath us. David is orderly, but he's drawn like a moth to flame to disorder. He wants Marcia....but she doesn't even really see him. She uses him. And poor David ends up cleaning up her mess instead of receiving any thanks, caring or consideration. The epitome of unappreciated. But yet something prevents him from standing up for himself. He just allows himself to be used. I think every adult has been in a situation where they allowed themselves to be used. Maybe not to the extent that David Turner did.....but a loss of self pride nonetheless. Do those moments always stem from grasping at things (or people) that are beyond our reach, things that don't fit into our lives, things we really can't possibly have/achieve/fulfill? Opposites attract? And after that initial attraction, they often rip our lives up trying to escape. I have an ex-husband who was my Marcia......Lord have mercy, I wish I had left that man alone. But I was determined to have what didn't fit into my life. Whammo! I was left cleaning up the mess just like poor old David Turner.

I read and enjoyed the first 24 stories in this book....and then finally, there it was.......The Lottery. I'm so glad I finally read it!! This story has definitely inspired so many other authors over the years. Jackson definitely packed a lot of chilling dread into just 11 pages. It's a tale of sacrifice, the power of tradition and mistaken human beliefs. Loved it! I"m sure it ruffled some feathers when it first came out in 1948!

All in all, a strangely creepy, chilling collection of strange little tales. A trip into the weird. I loved this book!

Shirley Jackson wrote six novels and many short stories during her writing career. She passed away in 1965. ( )
1 vote JuliW | Nov 22, 2020 |
This book was really frustrating to read. Every story just...didn't have a point? Every character felt emotionless and shallow. I read almost 300 pages and then decided to skip to The Lottery. Even that story, which is super famous, felt flat and characterless. I'm not a big fan of short stories to begin with, but I think that Jackson's writing truly shines in her novels. These stories just feel soulless. ( )
  LynnK. | Aug 4, 2020 |
A perfect collection of short stories. Among the collection my favourites are:
- After You, My Dear Alphonse (Social norms take time to change even for good people)
- Flower Garden (how racism creep in and take hold of people)
- Colloquy (short, sweet and I consider it lighthearted) ( )
  sami7 | Aug 3, 2020 |
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Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Shirley Jacksonautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculado
Homes, A. M.Introduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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For my mother and father
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He was just tight enough and just familiar enough with the house to be able to go out into the kitchen alone, apparently to get ice, but actually to sober up a little; he was not quite enough a friend of the family to pass out on the living room couch.
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PLEASE NOTE: This work is a COLLECTION of stories by Shirley Jackson that includes "The Lottery" and many other stories.  It is NOT to be used for stand-alone copies of "The Lottery" (a short story) or for briefer collections or compilations.  It has been printed in several editions, and I have kept with this work books that have the ISBN number of the collection even if only titled "The Lottery."
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The Lottery, one of the most terrifying stories written in this century, created a sensation when it was first published in The New Yorker. "Power and haunting," and "nights of unrest" were typical reader responses. This collection, the only one to appear during Shirley Jackson's lifetime, unites "The Lottery:" with twenty-four equally unusual stories. Together they demonstrate Jack son's remarkable range--from the hilarious to the truly horrible--and power as a storyteller.

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