Joyce Carol Oates's Top Ten List

For most writers, 25 short story collections would be three careers. For Joyce Carol Oates it’s just a notch on her heavyweight title belt as the World’s Most Prolific Literary Artist.

Her latest collection, “Black Dahlia & White Rose,” receives a mixed review in Sunday’s New York Times Book Review. “The stories in this collection generally involve a combination of macabre events, fantastical turns and unguarded first-person storytelling,” writes critic Randy Boyagoda. “Throughout, Oates explores the rough fortunes of (mostly) women who think they’re in control of their situations but are inevitably proved wrong, sometimes brutally so.”

Listen to NPR’s review of Black Dahlia & White Rose.

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Joyce Carol Oates’s Top Ten List

  1. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky (1866).
  2. Ulysses by James Joyce (1922).
  3. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner (1929).
  4. The poems of Emily Dickinson (1830–86).
  5. The stories of Franz Kafka (1883–1924).
  6. The Red and the Black by Stendhal (1830).
  7. The Rainbow by D. H. Lawrence (1915).
  8. Women in Love by D. H. Lawrence (1920).
  9. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville (1851).
  10. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (1884).

New List

Amy Bloom

1. The Deptford trilogy by Robertson Davies (1983).
2. Persuasion by Jane Austen (1817).
3. His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman (1995–2000).
4. The Stone Diaries by Carol Shields (1995).
5. The Known World by Edward P. Jones (2003).
6. The Beggar Maid by Alice Munro (1978).
7. The Plot Against America by Philip Roth.
8. The Hours by Michael Cunningham (1998).
9. Fancies and Goodnights by John Collier (1951).
10. Larry’s Party by Carol Shields (1997).

Wild Cards to make it an even dozen:

Jumping the Queue by Mary Wesley (1983).
Raising Demons by Shirley Jackson (1957).

Classic List

Chris Bohjalian

1. The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri (1321).
2. Ulysses by James Joyce (1922).
3. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens (1860–61).
4. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (1877).
5. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (1925).
6. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (1960).
7. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (1847).
8. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain (1884).
9. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison (1952).
10. Les Misérables by Victor Hugo (1862).

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