Aminatta Forna, novelist and short story writer, recommends…

(CLASSIC: from The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Writings, Penguin Classics)

My first encounter with the short story form. A teacher read it out to the class. It was a warm summer’s day in Surrey and we were shivering with terror. One boy had to leave the classroom. That’s the power of words.

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(MODERN: from Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned, Granta)

Americans embrace the short story with so much more enthusiasm than we do in the UK. This is the first collection from Wells Tower. His stories often feature sour, sad or sarcastic men. The lightness of touch comes from the humour and his ability to create compelling voices for his characters. ‘Door in Your Eye’ is about an elderly man who goes to stay with his overbearing daughter and notices strange goings on in the house opposite.

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