Sunday, November 14, 2010

Our Secret Home

Oatmeal Girl and I were - wait, that's such a stupid name and I'm sick of it and I don't know how it came to that. Elizabeth and I - that's her name, Elizabeth - were discussing the new Barry Hannah collection LONG, LAST, HAPPY yesterday, and we both love it. We're glad so many of his stories are packed together in one handy place, and what a beautiful package, too. But we were talking about our hope that people won't think of the "new and selected stories" as a REPLACEMENT for his other short story collections! Get the new book, YES, get it! But let it also act as a spur for discovering some of his other stories that are not included. The publisher did a terrific job of presenting the cream of the stories but once you have read them you should also try to dig up your own favorites, why not? For example, both Elizabeth and I think "Our Secret Home" is one of the highlights of AIRSHIPS, but it does not appear in the new book. Same goes for "Nicodemus Bluff" and "A Christmas Thought" - just for example! - from BATS OUT OF HELL. This is not a criticism of the anthology, which is especially valuable because of the great new stories in it. Elizabeth's "fave" Barry collection of all time is CAPTAIN MAXIMUS, so get that one, too. Yes, get everything, go ahead and get everything all the time.