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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Discussions About Orson Scott Card » Maps in a Mirror - Your favorites?

   
Author Topic: Maps in a Mirror - Your favorites?
staredecisis
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What are everybody's favorite stories from Maps in a Mirror? I just picked up a copy of the book from the early 1990s and wanted to know which ones to read first!

[ October 30, 2013, 10:02 PM: Message edited by: staredecisis ]

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DustinDopps
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Lots of good ones in there. I like "Deep Breathing Exercises" and "Fat Farm" but they're pretty bleak. And "A Thousand Deaths" and "Unaccompanied Sonata" are awesome too.
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staredecisis
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I read "Fat Farm" and it was pretty good. The short story version of "The Lost Boys" is my new favorite short story.

Any recommendations for the best stories from Keeper of Dreams? I just ordered my copy from the Hatrack River store (at a great price, I might add).

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Stone_Wolf_
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Mortal Gods...hands down!
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docmagik
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My favorite is the Porcelain Salamander. Wonderful, wonderful story.

I also love Fat Farm, Prior Restraint, Lost Boys, A Thousand Deaths, and Kingsmeat, among others.

The story I felt the biggest divide between my opinion of the story and Card's opinion of the story was But We Try Not To Act Like It. I really enjoyed it, but Card seemed pretty dismissive of it in his mini-essay afterward.

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staredecisis
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I just read a few more. Porcelain Salamander stands out: in fact, I consider it the best short story I've ever read. To describe it as deeply philosophical is an understatement.

While I know this may sound heretical, having now read many of the stories in Maps in a Mirror, they are OSC's best work. Forget the Ender series... the man is simply the best short story writer I've encountered.

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DDDaysh
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I'm going to have to look up the list of stories in that book...
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DDDaysh
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quote:
Originally posted by staredecisis:
the man is simply the best short story writer I've encountered.

Or at least the creepiest. I went from reading Ender's Game to reading a small collection of scort stories he wrote, "The Changed Man" I think...

I almost couldn't believe it was the same author. The man makes Shirley Jackson look downright light hearted!

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DDDaysh
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Ok, upon review, I defnitely need to read "Maps" again, because I don't even remember half these stories from their titles, but here is my list:

For me, the absolute most unforgettable story in the entire book was "Freeway Games". I probably think about that story at least two or three times a week. It's so freaky to me because it's just so.... plausible. And twisted.

Of course, the short story version of "The Lost Boys" was also pretty intense. It's a beautiful, sad story.

"Unaccompanied Sonata" was definitely an excellent and tragic story. The "sheltered genius" imagery has never left me.

"Kingsmeat" was another one that really stuck in my head. Even years later, it's one of those things that comes up in my brain in idle moments, contemplating the nature of cruelty and salvation. It's also got some pretty powerful "imaginary visuals" if you know what I mean.

"St. Amy's Tale", again, is a story that never completely left me. It was got to me emotionally.

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staredecisis
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I've finished reading them.

You're absolutely right, DDaysh. It does not seem like the same author.

I still think Porcelain Salamander is the best story of the lot. Unaccompanied Sonata and Lost Boys are my number two and three.

I also enjoyed The Bully and the Beast. My understanding is that OSC is turning it into a full length book now. I think it'd make a pretty good movie as well.

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vineyarddawg
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quote:
Originally posted by DDDaysh:
quote:
Originally posted by staredecisis:
the man is simply the best short story writer I've encountered.

Or at least the creepiest...
Well, somebody hasn't read Stephen King before. :-)

I'm not usually one to get discombobulated by books, but after reading Apt Pupil, I couldn't sleep that night. It's a complete psychological mind****.

I spent almost as much time pondering the story as I did pondering what type of person someone would have to be to come up with a short story like that.

EDIT: My comment is in response to DDDaysh's comment, not staredecisis'. I agree with stare's comment!

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staredecisis
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I agree that Stephen King is creepier. I'm a huge fan of King's, and I like his non-horror better than his horror. I feel that he does an exemplary job of capturing American culture, creating lifelike characters. But King's short stories tend to be too drawn out, and frankly, they can be hit or miss.

OSC's stories are uniformly excellent. They can capture our culture (see "I Think Mom and Dad Are Going Crazy, Jerry" for a good example), but more often than not they actually tell us something about ourselves in a completely original way. His stories tend to have deep philisophical implications (see "The Porcelain Salamander"), yet they are entertaining enough for those that prefer the shallow end of the pool.

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Sean Monahan
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I'm surprised no one's mentioned "Eumenides in the Fourth Floor Lavatory" yet. That's the first one I read in Maps, and it's one story by OSC I have never been able to read again.
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Sean Monahan
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Some others that stick out in my mind are "Closing the Timelid", "Fat Farm", and "Deep Breathing Exercises".
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DDDaysh
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I have actually, but nothing of his has really creeped me out that much. I haven't read everything of his though... Some of it was pretty weird, but I didn't find any of the imagery particularly disturbing.


quote:
Originally posted by vineyarddawg:
quote:
Originally posted by DDDaysh:
quote:
Originally posted by staredecisis:
the man is simply the best short story writer I've encountered.

Or at least the creepiest...
Well, somebody hasn't read Stephen King before. :-)

I'm not usually one to get discombobulated by books, but after reading Apt Pupil, I couldn't sleep that night. It's a complete psychological mind****.

I spent almost as much time pondering the story as I did pondering what type of person someone would have to be to come up with a short story like that.

EDIT: My comment is in response to DDDaysh's comment, not staredecisis'. I agree with stare's comment!


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