100 books like The Garden Party and Other Stories

By Katherine Mansfield,

Here are 100 books that The Garden Party and Other Stories fans have personally recommended if you like The Garden Party and Other Stories. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Dubliners

David W. Berner Author Of The Islander

From my list on the essence of the Irishman’s melancholic emotions.

Who am I?

Dugan was my grandmother’s maiden name. Her family was from County Wexford, Ireland near Rosslare on the island’s east coast. In recent years I have extensively studied my Irish heritage and have discovered much about my family, and about the DNA running through my own Irish blood. The inquiry has revealed much about my love of storytelling, good conversation, and generally about the way I move through the world. As a writer of several books of personal narrative and fiction, I have tried to write books that capture a certain emotion, and now through my own ancestral discoveries, I understand how those emotions and familial ties are so tightly linked. 

David's book list on the essence of the Irishman’s melancholic emotions

David W. Berner Why did David love this book?

What can one say about this classic? It is the quintessential story of old Dublin.

Published in 1914, the collection of fifteen short stories takes the reader on a journey through middle-class Ireland, touching on Irish nationalism and country pride, but also on the forces that were slowing changing Ireland at the time. The stories move chronologically from boyhood to manhood and culminate with what some critics say is the finest short story ever written, “The Dead.”

This story, like many others in Dubliners is both a meditation on everyday urban life and a study of human relationships, including how we live with our memories, our heritage, and how we find ways to manifest our personal emotions.

By James Joyce,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Dubliners as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A definitive edition of perhaps the greatest short story collection in the English language

James Joyce's Dubliners is a vivid and unflinching portrait of "dear dirty Dublin" at the turn of the twentieth century. These fifteen stories, including such unforgettable ones as "Araby," "Grace," and "The Dead," delve into the heart of the city of Joyce's birth, capturing the cadences of Dubliners' speech and portraying with an almost brute realism their outer and inner lives. Dubliners is Joyce at his most accessible and most profound, and this edition is the definitive text, authorized by the Joyce estate and collated from…

Book cover of Metamorphosis and Other Stories

Mike Russell Author Of Nothing Is Strange

From my list on surreal, magical, and mind-expanding stories.

Who am I?

Hello. My name is Mike Russell. I write books (novels, short story collections and novellas) and make visual art (mostly paintings, occasionally sculptures). I love art and books that are surreal and magical because that is the way life seems to me, and I love art and books that are mind-expanding because we need to expand our minds to perceive just how surreal and magical life is. My books have been described as strange fiction, weird fiction, surrealism, magic realism, fantasy fiction… but I just like to call them Strange Books.

Mike's book list on surreal, magical, and mind-expanding stories

Mike Russell Why did Mike love this book?

I love stories that are many things at the same time. They can open a person up to a wider perspective, a greater awareness; that’s the kind of story I love to write. Kafka’s stories can be considered as absurd allegory, as surreal evocations of mystery and magic, as psychological study, as satire, as dark comedy… as all of these and more at once. Many of Kafka’s stories were considered by the author to be unfinished but to me they seem complete. Kafka famously tried to ‘finish’ all of his stories once and for all by instructing his friend to destroy them after his death. Thankfully, he was prevented from adding that final full stop.

By Franz Kafka, Michael Hofmann (translator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Metamorphosis and Other Stories as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This collection of new translations brings together the small proportion of Kafka's works that he thought worthy of publication. It includes Metamorphosis, his most famous work, an exploration of horrific transformation and alienation; Meditation, a collection of his earlier studies; The Judgement, written in a single night of frenzied creativity; The Stoker, the first chapter of a novel set in America and a fascinating occasional piece, The Aeroplanes at Brescia, Kafka's eyewitness account of an air display in 1909. Together, these stories reveal the breadth of Kafka's literary vision and the extraordinary imaginative depth of his thought.

Book cover of The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway

Christopher Lyke Author Of The Chicago East India Company

From my list on being changed by war.

Who am I?

It’s kind of depressing that I’m so fascinated with these big “God and death and war” themes that are always banging around in my head. I think it’s because I like the gravity of even the smallest decisions in heightened crisis situations. It makes things so prominent and visceral. This gravity also makes the beauty in these moments of crisis more beautiful and love that much stronger. Ultimately, I’ve spent the last thirteen years trying to square with my time overseas and chase some version of that heightened meaning in civilian life. The contrast between being a school teacher and soldier really makes all of that clear. 

Christopher's book list on being changed by war

Christopher Lyke Why did Christopher love this book?

For my money, Hemingway is the greatest American short story writer. He is spare and direct until he isn’t. The meter and clipped phrasing and short sentences set up bigger, longer runs that are beautiful and often explain what it’s like to be a human being without being obvious or careless. They never feel false and are edited down to the bone. That’s probably what I learned most from Hemingway, the editing. Just picking a story, “On the Quai at Smyrna,” has such a staccato matter-of-factness that belies just how awful the situation there on the pier must have been. The narrator is hardened and recounts the events so matter-of-factly that you know they’ll come back later, once he is home and has time to reflect on them.  

By Ernest Hemingway,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The complete, authoritative collection of Ernest Hemingway's short fiction, including classic stories like "The Snows of Kilimanjaro," "A Clean, Well-Lighted Place," and "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber," along with seven previously unpublished stories.

In this definitive collection of the Nobel Prize-winning author’s short stories, readers will delight in Hemingway’s most beloved classics such as "The Snows of Kilimanjaro," "Hills Like White Elephants," and "A Clean, Well-Lighted Place," and will discover seven new tales published for the first time in this collection, totaling in sixty stories. This collection demonstrates Hemingway’s ability to write beautiful prose for each distinct story,…

Book cover of Selected Stories

Richard Ned Lebow Author Of Rough Waters and Other Stories: Facing Ethical Dilemmas

From my list on people who want to become short story writers.

Who am I?

My childhood, very much shaped by World War II, led me the study of international relations and political psychology. I have written numerous books on conflict management and prevention, and also on ancient Greek thinkers and writers, and the elusive nature of knowledge. In recent years I have begun to explore these themes in fiction. This shift has been exhilarating and liberating and provides me the opportunity to present the tragic understanding of life and politics to a larger audience.

Richard Ned's book list on people who want to become short story writers

Richard Ned Lebow Why did Richard Ned love this book?

Chekhov is a master storyteller who conveys important insights into human nature with remarkable parsimony. Chekhov also provides contemporary readers with a certain detachment as he wrote in the nineteenth century and in Russia. Ancient Greek playwrights understood that distant settings provided analytical clarity to contemporary problems and also made people understand their universal nature. Chekhov also serves these aims.

By Anton Pavlovich Chekhov,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Selected Stories as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With an Introduction and Notes by Joe Andrew, Professor of Russian Literature, Keele University.

Anton Chekhov is widely regarded as one of the greatest writers of short stories. He constructs stories where action and drama are implied rather than described openly, and which leave much to the reader's imagination.

This collection contains some of the most important of his earliest and shortest comic sketches, as well as examples of his great, mature works. Throughout, the doctor-turned-writer displays compassion for human suffering and misfortune, but is always able to see the comical, even farcical aspects of the human condition.

Chekhov sees…

Book cover of The Modern Bohemian Table: Gathering with Friends and Entertaining in Style

Lauren Thomas Author Of The Modern Hippie Table: Recipes and Menus for Eating Simply and Living Beautifully

From my list on lifestyle books for cooking, entertaining and tablescaping.

Who am I?

As a child of divorce who moved around often, cooking and entertaining was consistent in my life on both sides of my family. The comforting smells and traditions around food in the home became a religion to me—something I could count on. My grandmother was a hostess to be admiredher impeccable entertaining etiquette was where my love of hosting was born. My degree in psychology lends itself to sharing what’s so important about creating intentional gatherings at the table. My education and passion for creative arts pair well with my husband’s expertise as an Architect, where we understand the importance of creating inviting spaces for people to occupy.

Lauren's book list on lifestyle books for cooking, entertaining and tablescaping

Lauren Thomas Why did Lauren love this book?

As an event planner, Amanda shares her tips for how to host beautiful and meaningful gatherings with friends from small and simple to a larger outdoor party, all of which she uses a bohemian vibe to do so. Her ideas for throwing themed parties are creative, fun, and doable, and I love how she organizes them by season. Her bohemian style uses interesting contrasts, the mixing and matching of tableware and linens, and is a vibe based on feeling rather than rules. There are so many good tips on how to be the best hostess using good planning, calculating how much food you’ll need, and also how to pick drinks to complement your meal.

By Amanda Bernardi,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Modern Bohemian Table as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Learn the rules, traditions and customs of table setting and entertaining and how to incorporate principles of bohemian design.

The Modern Bohemian Table teaches you how to: Build an heirloom tabletop collection; Design a welcoming and beautiful table; Calculate how much food you need you for each gathering; Select wine or other drinks to complement the meal.

And inspires you with over 20 fresh and fun party ideas, broken up into seasons, including: Morrocan Rooftop Soiree; Wine Night; Medieval-Inspired Feast; Garden Gathering; Apres-Ski Get-Together.

From tablescapes to menu planning, napkin folding to cocktail mixing, learn to gather your favorite people…

Book cover of Franny and Zooey

Farah Ali Author Of The River, the Town

From my list on growing up in unusual ways.

Who am I?

I have always loved reading about individuals and the ways they behave in extraordinary or unusual circumstances. Stories that are about a person growing up and coming to an understanding that the world around them is deeply flawed, and that they themselves are patched-up, imperfect creatures, fascinate me. I find myself observing people and the words they say. Those are the kinds of stories I write, about regular people stumbling along and discovering some truths about themselves.

Farah's book list on growing up in unusual ways

Farah Ali Why did Farah love this book?

Franny and Zooey are the two youngest siblings in the Glass family. Originally, “Franny” was published as a short story and “Zooey” as a novella, both of them being published later in one book.

In “Franny”, the protagonist visits her college boyfriend who speaks about his experiences in great detail. But Franny increasingly becomes disenchanted with the ideals of accomplishment he speaks about.

The way “Zooey” opens is memorable: he is reading a letter from his brother Buddy who has written about their eldest brother Seymour’s suicide many years ago. Meanwhile, Franny has entered a state of distress. The book then focuses on Zooey trying to help her.

I love that the story centers around these siblings, living and dead and away, and that despite past tragedies there is hope. 

By J.D. Salinger,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Franny and Zooey as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Perhaps the best book by the foremost stylist of his generation" (New York Times), J. D. Salinger's Franny and Zooey collects two works of fiction about the Glass family originally published in The New Yorker.

"Everything everybody does is so--I don't know--not wrong, or even mean, or even stupid necessarily. But just so tiny and meaningless and--sad-making. And the worst part is, if you go bohemian or something crazy like that, you're conforming just as much only in a different way."

A novel in two halves, Franny and Zooey brilliantly captures the emotional strains and traumas of entering adulthood. It…

Book cover of The Lessons

Genevieve Novak Author Of Crushing

From my list on to break you out of a reading slump.

Who am I?

I'm a contemporary romance writer with two novels: No Hard Feelings and Crushing, stories about complex, messy women making mistakes and learning from them. As I work on my third novel, I'm remembering how hard it is to write when you're in a reading rut. Sometimes every book I pick up is disappointing, and reading feels like a chore, and I risk losing momentum. Sometimes I need something familiar to get back on track and remember why I love my job. These books feel like a long exhale. I can come to them with an overloaded brain, bad moods and doubt and discontent, and turn the last page restored.

Genevieve's book list on to break you out of a reading slump

Genevieve Novak Why did Genevieve love this book?

While not exactly a light read – it contains adult explorations of trauma and violence – Purcell’s writing is drum-tight and entirely absorbing.

This book broke my months-long reading slump and writer's block, reminding me that all it takes to fall in love with stories again is one really, really good one. I’m not much of an annotator, but the pages of my copy are splattered with pen, most often exclamation marks and underlines and obscene exclamations of enthusiasm and grief.

Split between multiple perspectives, locations, and decades, The Lessons is a heart-wrenching romance without fluff, tropes, and suspended disbeliefs. A story of expectations and disappointments, promises and betrayals, it’s full of sharp observations about writing and writers, social constructs, and human behaviour.

I devoured it in days, and can’t wait to forget all the details so I can come back to it and fall in love all over…

By John Purcell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Lessons as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What if your first love was your one and only chance of happiness? In our lives, some promises are easily forgotten, while others come to haunt us with tragic results. From the bestselling author of The Girl on the Page comes The Lessons, a compelling novel about love and betrayal.

1961: When teens Daisy and Harry meet, it feels so right they promise to love each other forever, but in 1960s England everything is stacked against them: class, education, expectations. When Daisy is sent by her parents to live with her glamorous, bohemian Aunt Jane, a novelist working on her…

Book cover of All of Me

Maura Jortner Author Of 102 Days of Lying About Lauren

From my list on kids who make it through tough times.

Who am I?

I went through major surgery when I was in eighth grade. The physical pain was bad, but what hurt more was the emotional side. When I returned to school, the friend groups had shifted, shutting me out because of my extended absence. I had to face that time in life alone. Perhaps that’s why I’m drawn to works about kids who have to face challenges on their own. When we go through hard times, our true selves come out. They have to; we have no one else. We can’t pretend. We can only try to make it. The books I like show characters that shine through their hardships.

Maura's book list on kids who make it through tough times

Maura Jortner Why did Maura love this book?

I never thought I’d love a book written in verse; poetry just isn’t my thing. Yet, Chris Baron’s work took my breath away. I was mesmerized and couldn’t put it down.

It’s about Ari, an overweight kid, who struggles with his self-worth because of his size. I’ve struggled with my weight too–all my life. So I understood what he was going through. It broke my heart when Ari harmed himself, but I appreciated seeing him make it through this tough time. He showed determination and grit.

By Chris Baron,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked All of Me as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

"Beautifully written, brilliant, and necessary," (Matt de la Pena, Newbery Medalist), here is a body-positive book about how a boy deals with fat-shaming.

Ari has body-image issues. After a move across the country, his parents work selling and promoting his mother's paintings and sculptures. Ari's bohemian mother needs space to create, and his father is gone for long stretches of time on "sales" trips.

Meanwhile, Ari makes new friends: Pick, the gamer; the artsy Jorge, and the troubled Lisa. He is also relentlessly bullied because he's overweight, but he can't tell his parents―they're simply not around enough to listen.


Book cover of Drawn from Life: A Memoir

Tessa Lunney Author Of Autumn Leaves, 1922: A Kiki Button Mystery

From my list on the 1920s.

Who am I?

I started reading about the 1920s after I read Among the Bohemians by Virginia Nicholson in 2008. I kept reading about the 1920s, particularly 1920s Paris, through my Masters and then my Doctorate in war fiction. I would read about interwar Europe, or America, or Britain, when I needed to work on my doctorate but was too tired to read about trenches or trauma, and it became an obsession. Then it became the subject of two novels, which involved more and more particular research. I love the period's brittle gaiety, its dirty glamour, a time of cultural and political revolution as people fought for a better world.

Tessa's book list on the 1920s

Tessa Lunney Why did Tessa love this book?

This book should not be out of print. It is beautifully written – economical, witty yet discreet, and joyful. Bowen was a young woman from Adelaide, in South Australia, who set off to London to be an artist and landed there during the Great War. She had a long affair and daughter with writer Ford Madox Ford, painted and partied in Paris, moved her daughter back to England in time to watch German bombers fly overhead during the Blitz. This book became another guide for how to live the creative life, the bohemian life, a life full of honesty and art. Like Hemingway’s memoir, it’s full of anecdotes of other writers and artists that were her friends for a time. It reflects on what it means to be an artist, a woman artist, an artist and mother, ideas that still hold true as they are about the inner life of…

By Stella Bowen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Drawn from Life as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

Book cover of Joe Gould's Secret

Alan Prendergast Author Of Gangbuster: One Man's Battle Against Crime, Corruption, and the Klan

From my list on con artists, swindlers, and other big fat liars.

Who am I?

My father was a stage magician, and I grew up looking for the gimmick behind the marvel. As a journalist, I gravitated toward true crime and the many varieties of fraud, deception, and misdirection on display in any high-stakes criminal trial. I am particularly fascinated by elaborate cons, whether they involve sideshow mitt readers, political hucksters, or cryptocurrency barons. When I found out that a century ago my hometown was the center of a Big Con operation that raked in millions, I had to learn more. The result is my book Gangbuster

Alan's book list on con artists, swindlers, and other big fat liars

Alan Prendergast Why did Alan love this book?

Nobody was better than New Yorker writer Mitchell at capturing the gritty realities of the Bowery, but he met his match when he decided to profile Joe Gould, a Harvard-educated bohemian said to be working on a massive “Oral History of Our Time.”

Twenty years later, Mitchell returned to his subject and revealed the secret he’d learned shortly after the first piece was published: that Gould had perpetrated (with Mitchell’s unwitting help) one of the great literary hoaxes of all time – not out of greed or a desire for fame, but out of desperation and mental illness.

But is Mitchell giving us the straight story, or is there more he’s not telling? This labyrinth of smoke and mirrors still astonishes me. 

By Joseph Mitchell,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Joe Gould's Secret as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'It's a masterpiece, of course, but more than that it shows that there is some such thing as being a simple observer' Nicci French, Independent

It was 1932 when Joseph Mitchell first came across Joe Gould, a Harvard-educated vagrant of Greenwich Village. Penniless, filthy, scurrilous, charming, thieving, Joe Gould was widely considered a genius. He was working on a book he called an Oral History - the longest book ever written he claimed, formed of recorded conversations set down in exercise books. Of course, when Gould died the great epic was nowhere to be found.

This compelling portrait of a…

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