A personal selection by V.S. Pritchett, himself a well-known short story writer, of some 40 stories written in English reflecting the wealth and variety of an art that spans over 200 years. This does not claim to be a collection of the best short stories or even to be properly representative; rather the aim is to bring together some of the most original examples of a changing form. Stories have been gathered from all over the English-speaking world, from Canada, India, New Zealand and Australia as well as from Britain, Eire and America. Stories by Hemingway, Lawrence, Somerset Maugham, John Updike, Frank O'Connor, Joyce and Pritchett himself are included.