A Walk in My World: International Short Stories about Youth

Overview

A treasury of short stories about young people, written by some of the world's best writers. This volume of sixteen stories written by some of the world's best writers—including three Nobel Prize winners—will transport readers to all parts of the globe to meet kindred spirits in other cultures on their journeys to adulthood. In Heinrich Böll's "The Balek Scales," a young German boy heroically tries to redress the centuries of injustice in his village. In Yasunari Kawabata's "The Jay," a girl's interest in a ...

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Overview

A treasury of short stories about young people, written by some of the world's best writers. This volume of sixteen stories written by some of the world's best writers—including three Nobel Prize winners—will transport readers to all parts of the globe to meet kindred spirits in other cultures on their journeys to adulthood. In Heinrich Böll's "The Balek Scales," a young German boy heroically tries to redress the centuries of injustice in his village. In Yasunari Kawabata's "The Jay," a girl's interest in a mother jay separated from her young becomes a metaphor for her own estrangement from her father. Set during the Pinochet regime in Chile, "The Composition" by Antonio Skarmeta is the story of a boy who resists betraying his parents through a routine school assignment. In Jamaica Kincaid's "To the Jetty," a teenage girl embarks on her first journey away from her island home of Antigua and into the wider world. Also included are stories by Ama Ata Aidoo (Ghana), Toni Cade Bambara (United States), Italo Calvino (Italy), Anita Desai (India), Elizabeth Jolley (Australia), Naguib Mahfouz (Egypt), Frank O'Connor (Ireland), V. S. Pritchett (England), Valentin Rasputin (Russia), Cora Sandel (Norway), and Xiao Hong (China). An introduction and lengthy biographical notes provide context and give insight into the lives of the authors.

A collection of short stories from around the world including such authors as Valentin Rasputin, Yasunari Kawabata, and Toni Cade Bambara.

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Editorial Reviews

Susan Marie Swanson
Each of the sixteen stories in this compelling collection has a young person at its center.... Not only does this collection sweep around the globe, it compasses the human heart. The stories treat themes of enduring interest to youth...they are stories about growing up.
— Riverbank Review
VOYA - Ruth Cox
Mazer invites the reader "to a feast of stories, to stroll down a festival of the world's fiction" from contemporary Japan, Germany, India, Ghana, Russia, Australia, Egypt, Chile, England, Italy, Indonesia, Norway, China, Ireland, Antigua, and the United States. These short stories highlight how different, and sometimes even how similar, the lives of young people are no matter where in the world they live. For example, in Anita Desai's Game at Twilight, Ravi revels in finding the best hiding place amongst the storage shed smell of rats, ant hills, dust, and spider webs, while playing a game of hide and seek in the Indian heat. Eventually, his joy turns to outrage when no one comes to find him. Ravi returns to the house to discover the other children engaged in another game. No one pays any attention to him, even when he loudly insists that "Raghu didn't find me. I won, I won." This incident could have happened to a child anywhere in the world, but the description of the humid heat of an Indian twilight causes sweat to rise on the forehead of the reader immersed in this particular story.

Although this is a uniquely international short story collection, written by a distinguished group of authors, a majority of the main characters are children rather than adolescents. Whether the young protagonists will hold the attention of YA readers is to be seen. Teachers and librarians will, however, be delighted with the concluding "About the Authors" section, which lists biographical information for Ama Ata Aidoo, Yasunari Kawabata, Jamaica Kincaid, Frank O'Connor, Valentine Rasputin, and the other authors whose stories are included in this collection.

VOYA Codes: 4Q 2P M (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses, For the YA reader with a special interest in the subject, Middle School-defined as grades 6 to 8).

KLIATT
This collection of short stories has an international, multicultural flair that will appeal to better teenage readers and adults, primarily. The compilation of various international authors includes three Nobel Prize winners and several writers who have won other prestigious literary awards, and the quality of the stories is evident in the rich detail and interesting characterizations of the young people. In "French Lessons," we meet a young boy sent to town to attend school in post-WW II Russia. The poverty of his family makes the food that is stolen from him in his room even more precious, eventually leading him to gamble with the money he is sent to buy milk. The empathetic characters and vivid detail of the conditions suffered by these children make this a good example of the quality of all of the stories in this collection. This book would be a good addition to world literature studies in the high school; it also would offer all students a glimpse into the lives of young people around the globe. KLIATT Codes: SA—Recommended for senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 1998, Persea, 223p, 21cm, 98-27861, $8.95. Ages 16 to adult. Reviewer: Lynn Evarts; Lib. Media Spec., Sauk Prairie H.S., Prairie du Sac, WI, September 2000 (Vol. 34 No. 5)
School Library Journal
Gr 9 UpAn uneven collection of stories by writers from around the world. The introduction lays a good foundation for the various themes (rites of passage, the complexities of adulthood, etc.). There are certainly some strong selections here, such as Antonio Skrmetas The Composition, in which young Pedro learns of his parents true feelings toward Chiles fascist government. Also guaranteed to strike a nerve with teens is Pramoedya Ananta Toers Inem, a story centering around an eight-year-old girls pending nuptials and the unfortunate situation that follows. Other entries present situations young adults will sympathize with and find interesting, but several of the offerings lack the plots and themes that usually sustain teen interest, and some of them seem to lose something in translation. Brief biographies of the authors are appended. This collection offers many compelling tales for pleasure reading or classroom discussion, but has too many misses to be considered as a first purchase. Mazers Going Where Im Coming From: Memoirs of American Youth (1995) and Working Days: Stories about Teenagers and Work (1997, both Persea) are stronger anthologies.Karen Hoth, Marathon Middle/High School, FL Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Riverbank Review
Not only does this collection sweep around the globe, it compasses the human heart.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780892552498
  • Publisher: Persea Books
  • Publication date: 5/28/2000
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,171,430
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Anne Mazer is the author of several widely acclaimed books, including the novels Moose Street and The Oxboy, and a picture book, The Salamander Room, winner of the Keystone to Reading Book Award and a Reading Rainbow Feature Selection. Anthologies from edited by Mazer include: America Street, Going Where I'm Coming From, A Walk in My World, and Working Days. Mazur lives in Ithaca, New York.

Anne Mazer is the author of several widely acclaimed books, including the novels Moose Street and The Oxboy, and a picture book, The Salamander Room, winner of the Keystone to Reading Book Award and a Reading Rainbow Feature Selection. Anthologies from edited by Mazer include: America Street, Going Where I'm Coming From, A Walk in My World, and Working Days. Mazur lives in Ithaca, New York.

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Table of Contents

Introduction
The Jay 3
The Balek Scales 9
Games at Twilight 18
The Late Bud 28
French Lessons 40
A Gentleman's Agreement 78
The Conjurer Made off with the Dish 86
The Composition 95
The Ladder 106
Sweet Town 122
Big Fish, Little Fish 127
Inem 137
The Child who Loved Roads 152
Hands 163
Christmas Morning 184
A Walk to the Jetty 194
About the Authors 211
About the Editor 219
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