He named five top contemporary short story collections for The Daily Beast.
One title on the list:
PU-239 and Other Russian FantasiesRead about the other titles on the list.
by Ken Kalfus
Imagine Breaking Bad but with weapons-grade plutonium instead of meth. That’s the basic premise of the title story from Kalfus’s 1999 cult classic, which throws Soviet history into a centrifuge and hits “spin.” Other stories feature the cosmonaut Nikolai Gagarin, Jewish homesteaders in Mongolia, and a disgraced dissident writer forced to review a novel by Leonid Brezhnev. My favorite story in the collection, “Anzhelika, 13,” is about a lonely girl getting her period for the first time in the last days of Stalin’s reign. No one else writes historical fiction like this.
Also see Alison MacLeod's top ten short stories.