Collected Stories of Wallace Stegner

by Wallace Stegner

Hardcover, 1990

Call number




Random House (1990), Edition: 1st, 527 pages


Here at last are the collected stories of one of America's most distinguished and admired writers. In addition to his honored works (Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winners), Stegner is widely known as one of America's finest teachers of writing. He has taught at Harvard, Wisconsin, and Iowa and has lectured widely.

User reviews

LibraryThing member Smiley
Stegner's stories have won many O. Henry prizes, but he is a novelist, not a short story writer. "City of the Dead" is exceptionally fine.
LibraryThing member mahallett
pretty good start, declined toward the end
LibraryThing member larryerick
This was my first full fledged immersion into this author's work (after a failed attempt at reading one of his novels), and I was immediately impressed with the skill set he brings to the page. Wendell Berry's and Alice Munro's level of word craft came to mind at first, but it soon became clear
Show More
this author was not offering any of Berry's sense of humor, and, by the end, it became obvious it would never be offered. The story settings were often reminiscent of Ivan Doig's work, but ultimately I found what I have read from Kent Haruf came closest to what I read here. There was also a rather jarring splash of John Updike in the mix. Amidst the entire collection, at least three different sets of stories are connected. In one case, the second story in its set comes spaced well after the first, and I was a bit startled to realize it took up immediately after the earlier one. This separation in the full collection is particularly odd when, later in the collection, three stories in a row are from a new set, but not obviously following immediately in narrative time. All this is probably a bit inconsequential when laid against the author's overall tone in his stories. I was constantly reminded of a story I had been told (perhaps erroneously, because I can't find confirmation of it now), in which Andrew Carnegie supposedly told his daughter, "Life would be so much easier for you once you realize life is hard." This story collection repeatedly points out various folks in various situations and settings, struggling hard and often not even achieving "two steps forward and one step back" status. Unfortunately, it was never clear to me whether the author just thought life was hard or if he was ultimately pointing out that he wondered if it was all worth it. The good news is he writes so well, you feel obligated to hear him out, regardless.
Show Less
LibraryThing member charlie68
A tremendous range of stories with different themes and settings that immerse the reader. Mr. Stegner is a writer with depth.




0394584090 / 9780394584096
Page: 0.326 seconds