The Ex - A Short Story

100 Great Short Stories

Bradburyesque, in a timeless land where acolytes strive to save their sacred texts from soldiers and from unexplained disappearances Italics in original Creepy and unexpected in all the right ways. Again, this story's introductory quote ties it in with the preceding Wise story. And again, another excursion into post-apocalypse—a strong subtheme in Ex Libris.

Saxey The dilemma is between circulation and preservation—which is why I'm not a librarian myself, by the way, although I'd prefer to be thought of more as a collector than a "hoarder" their word. This story does have a good setup—I'm not sure it pays off, but it is at least accurately named. One book, at least. Reed's story is not nearly as sexist as its title might suggest, though. She's named Mary, and she is a librarian. He is named George. Benford's entry felt a little too old-school, to me—but would I have thought so without having seen his name?

I must admit I'm not sure. This one touches on the magic of the books no one else has read It reminded me, just a little, of my own " Last Gasp of the Silverfish ," if I may be permitted the presumption. You don't get to tuck your forty-second! At any rate, Ex Libris definitely did the trick for me—that endlessly fascinating trick of turning black ink on white pages into full-color fantasies, again and again, which makes this anthology a very good read.

View all 4 comments. May 19, Alex Sarll added it. Ah, the perils of the anthology on a single topic, in this case libraries: So for all that I love a good library, there were points he Ah, the perils of the anthology on a single topic, in this case libraries: So for all that I love a good library, there were points here at which I found myself sighing as yet another collection was lost or saved, hidden away or opened up. Saxey, whose work I've not encountered before, encapsulates it perfectly in the aptly titled 'The Librarian's Dilemma'; the nature of the job is that it's always a tension between access and preservation.

That story switches back on itself several times within a fairly short piece, understanding that some moral questions are tricky but that doesn't mean others aren't easy; too many of the other pieces seemed too certain of too many answers, plumping uncomplicatedly for one or the other, ending in moments of resolution which made me think - really? There are certainly gems here. They imagine that life will always be like this - like a television show in eternal syndication - that they will always have each other.

They use the same vocabulary. They borrow each other's books and music. May 07, Anna Tan rated it really liked it Shelves: As anthologies go, Ex Libris a mixed bag. It wasn't as dark as I expected it to be hah , nor half as weird. The libraries depicted in this book are often wonderful, magical places, some of which hold more magic than can be reasonably contained.

In Libres Elizabeth Bear is a hilarious case in point, emphasising how dangerous it is can be , where one browses at the As anthologies go, Ex Libris a mixed bag. In Libres Elizabeth Bear is a hilarious case in point, emphasising how dangerous it is can be , where one browses at their own risk and carries a spool of thread to remember how to get out again. Ruthanna Emrys 's Those Who Watch explores this further, though in a slightly darker way, with shifting statues and secret myths. Another notably dangerous library is shown in In The Stacks by Scott Lynch where reshelving books is a dangerous job, often involving magic and swords and resulting in trips to the infirmary.

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Paula Guran is known for selecting darker, wilder stories and this anthology offers that too, mostly in the form of frightening librarians, such as the one in Special Collections Norman Partridge. Some librarians and libraries are inexplicably linked, harking back to the lost library of Alexandria The Midbury Lake Incident ; Kristine Kathryn Rusch. All in all, Ex Libris is a celebration of words, the power of words, and the people who try to keep them in order. It's a hefty book but one worth reading! I received a copy of this ebook via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Apr 02, Bea Charmed rated it liked it Shelves: Libraries are one of my favorite places to be so I when I saw this on Edelweiss, I eagerly requested it. The stories celebrate libraries, librarians, knowledge, information, and the power of words. The stories covered sweet, whimsical, odd, strange, hopeful, funny, and a couple were dark. The quality ranged from good to meh, exciting to boring, inventive to cliched. It's a LONG book as it has a lot of stories.

It would have been a tighter collection with fewer stories, a quarter to a third less. The topic was broad enough that authors had a lot of wriggle room but even so, some authors greatly stretched the definitions of 'library' and 'librarian', and there were some common themes: There are some major authors in the fantasy and science fiction genres here, some of whom I'd never read before so it was a good introduction to a wide range of authors. Jun 12, Marjolein rated it liked it Shelves: Full review to come!

May 14, Katharine Ventureadlaxre rated it liked it Shelves: This anthology is made up of reprints, taking from other anthologies or magazines such as Uncanny and Subterranean, so some you may have come across before. After all, what better subject than libraries. Unfortunately I struggled with this anthology. Usually I love to review each story individually, but I didn't find my This anthology is made up of reprints, taking from other anthologies or magazines such as Uncanny and Subterranean, so some you may have come across before.

Usually I love to review each story individually, but I didn't find myself able to have enough to discuss about each one. Please find following what I loved about a few of them. This is a steady anthology, one that has a beautiful cover and a few very excellent pieces in it, but unfortunately is not an easy collection to read through continuously either in a week, or a few weeks.

In the House of the Seven Librarians by Ellen Klages In a fitting start to the anthology we see a quaint proper library replaced with a new one that boasts proper fluorescent lighting and ergonomic chairs, and it's written with the kind of tone we can appreciate - a library isn't just a place with stacks of books, libraries that were our friends growing up are places of comfort - not sharp lines and electronics. Not all the books make it over, and for some reason the seven librarians remain in the old building also - and it's here they receive a late return.

As we all know, late books require a fee to be paid, and this payment is quite odd indeed. This is quite a lovely short - a little bit magical and a little bit of old comfort you instantly wish you were one of the librarians in their quiet comfort, or the lucky little bundle of payment. Reading this one was an excellent start to the anthology, and is so lovely in such a gentle way that it beautifully sets the tone.

John Mandel - how in a not so distant future a rabble group of people travel the world to entertain and remind others of things so they can't be forgotten and lost to the ravages of time in a post-apocalyptic world. This one is an excellent piece to broaden the anthology out. We start with a safe library we've always found comfort in as children with Klages' story first, and then Baker takes us out into the big unknown, and shows how stories are our constant, and the one thing we can't do without - up there with food, water and shelter.

In Libres by Elizabeth Bear Euclavia has been instructed by her advisor that her thesis really needs another source. He recommends a full rare book, rather than a particular article, and this means she has to go to the library. To the Special Collections section in particular. And for this, she wants her oldest friend, Bucephalus, a centaur to come with her, as libraries are a cause for concern. They arrive, and the librarian they meet both recommends against it, and asks whether she's done anything to earn the ire of her advisor - slept with the tutor's spouse, etc.

This creates such a fantastic piece of work where librarians carry both sword and wand, and people like poor Eu who need to enter are instructed to bring a ball of twine, three days of food, a bedroll, no fire, no shoes on antique rugs, no pens but pencil and notepaper are allowed Brilliant through each part, and Bear, I want a full novel of this, please. Summer Reading by Ken Liu 'After mankind had scattered to the stars like dandelion seeds, Earth was maintained as a museum overseen by robot curators. He last saw a human over five thousand years ago, but he still goes about his routine - just like our favourite Wall-e, and like him, he cares so much about what humans have left behind.

This short story is endlessly quotable, like a lot of what Liu writes. The Inheritance of Barnabas Wilcox by Sarah Monette As one can guess from the title, Barnabas Wilcox has passed away, and his inheritance involves a country house to his nephew. One of the stipulations being that his library catalogue of an astounding number of books be finished - only his nephew doesn't know where to begin, so he writes to a boy he knew in school - one he was never close with, but he's the only one he knows who to turn to.

And as Booth is in awe of the now deceased antiquary Lucius Wilcox, he agrees. Like a good horror or murder mystery, the pieces slowly fall into place. The insane ramblings of the uncle. The abundance of a certain type of tree in the garden, and the horrid scratchings on the library door. I haven't yet read any of Monette's work but now I really, really want to. Now nothing electronic works, but as long as they stay behind their walls, the invaders seem to leave them pretty much alone. The only issue is that some houses have no or very few physical books, and along with half the houses which means everyone has to squish in together , the shops, and the school so now the town hall acts as the school also Something that 16yo Katie Marsden can't stand.

This is such a fun and wonderful piece - kids with gumption, and it tackles the hard questions. Such as 'Should I pick books [to save] because of posterity and shit like that, or should I just be selfish and save the ones I wanted to read? Now Tansy is a fan of the kindle, as am I, but this certainly is a strong reason to be a fan of both mediums for sure.

Even if you pick up this book and flick to Amal's section first - totally worth it. In the Stacks by Scott Lynch An old favourite. Fifth year exams for the High University of Hazar require the aspirants to enter the library and return with a library book.

Well, the motto of the librarians here is: Dressed in armour, equipped with swords and years of training, four of them are there to take the test. As one of the thankfully longer pieces in this anthology, we get such a fun romp of a tale where you see so much of their whole world even though we mostly see their sprawling library alone. Another piece that demands a full novel or ten. The language and dialogue makes anything by Lynch such a joy to read. The descriptions, witty banter - in many awful moods I've picked up something by Lynch and felt better within minutes - if only it could be bottled.

She's had a feeling that she's always been looking for something, and she finally finds it in a slim volume of poetry, that's part of a collection donated by a family clearing out their father's estate. This is a beautiful piece of work. Aug 15, Catherine Girard-Veilleux rated it it was amazing. Now, I must say this book really caught my interest when I first saw it! Stories about librarians, libraries, and lore in the same book? Also, the Latin title got me. The best thing about Ex Libris? It did not disappoint me — in fact, it even surprised me more than once!

She tells us of the different libraries and librarians from all genres in literature while punctuating it with excerpts. Her research must have taken her a long time… but I want to say it was well worth it and beautifully done. As for the reading itself, it flows — it is engrossing and lovely. Moreover, I had a magical read! The stories most of them were very funny and amusing. It is an enchanting and lovely book!

To what extent and use is the surprise of each story. Speaking of stories, they were quite imaginative. The voices of the many narrators are clear, distinct, and strong. I would have thought some stories would lack in voice… but I was shown wrong with this collection! The vocabulary used in these stories is diverse, beautiful, and precise. Some stories are drama, others are adventures, but all have a subtle touch of humor and are engaging in their own way.

I have seen erotic fanfiction written by teenagers who have never had sex better than this garbage. The only reason why I picked this up was because it was on the NYT bestsellers. Katie is a one-dimensional pathetic excuse for a woman in modern society, and Brandon fares no better. There is no proper characterisation and both characters appear to have split personalities throughout the story.

I was midway through the second instalment. What a horrible waste of pape What a complete piece of trash.

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What a horrible waste of paper and ink. Mar 06, Tink Magoo is bad at reviews marked it as did-not-finish. Gave up because the heroine is an whiny immature annoying twat. View all 7 comments. Jan 11, KatLynne rated it it was ok Shelves: It's short, making it a quick, and unfortunately, just an OK read for me. Katie is view spoiler [ an eighteen year old college freshman and a virgin. There's good, bad, and ugly all wrapped up in this short novella. At times the 2. At times the writing is good, other times, not so much. Also, there are areas where the reader must be able to suspend disbelief to thoroughly enjoy.

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In most cases this is not a problem for me. When I read to escape I like to forgo the in-depth realities of RL. Unfortunately, there are a few scenes that were so unbelievable that it detracted from my enjoyment. Katie's innocence and immaturity shine through in this first release. This series was chosen for me by a friend in a local group read. Many have loved this and I'm thinking this is another book that everyone loves but me.

Therefore, please don't let my rating deter you from trying. Now off to the next installment: View all 8 comments. Sep 20, Vaso rated it liked it Shelves: Jan 08, Jamie rated it did not like it. Didn't care for this one.. This one definitely didn't do it for me and I won't be going any further with the series Jan 18, Lashuri Chan rated it did not like it Shelves: This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers.

To view it, click here. Okay let me start by saying the author has no constancy whatsoever. Sometimes she doesn't add the dots across the page to let you know the character is having another flashback. I have to go back and reread to actually get it. Second of all what the heck? I don't like the writing style or at least how the characters are acting, it's ridiculous! Especially this grown man, excuse me I mean grown BOY! I found it laughable he said to her that he didn't date lower because two weeks into i Okay let me start by saying the author has no constancy whatsoever.

I found it laughable he said to her that he didn't date lower because two weeks into it they did the deed, then two months into it, I love you, probably still two months or three into it move in with me. Eighteen or not he was being ridiculous! I can't stand Katie. Even now at twenty five she acts like a dear in the headlights saying huh and oh all the time. She is so damn clueless as to what is going on around her it's pathetic! If someone says that word one more time Just what the heck was I reading? And then he finds out she is eighteen and he takes her to the trash cans to screw her one last time to be mean, to have a memory that isn't in the classroom and because lets face it- he's a pervert who likes jail bait.

She tries to kiss him after class and he pulls back in disgust but then he will have sex with her outside? After seven years apparently he still thought about her and wasted no time getting back in her pants again and le shock, the idiot is engaged! I can tell right off the back this series is a car accident.

You can't look away even though you know you should.

Creating Short Stories

Benford's entry felt a little too old-school, to me—but would I have thought so without having seen his name? The descriptions of the feelings of abandonment, confusion and loneliness were so realistically written that the reader is sure to visit the throes of despair of their own break-ups. I'm enjoying the ride, join me!!! They were opposite yet similar and once they convinced their families, they were about to get engaged. About interpreting alien transmissions:

I like the plot but I don't like how it is written and the characters are not smart. I'll buy the next two books and read them only because it will be so darn easy to get a refund afterward. View all 3 comments. Jan 11, Shannon rated it really liked it. I wasn't going to get this.. So I will put it out there I think that is a bit of a scam..

I am going to read the next one now!

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View all 5 comments. OOOOH i had such a good time with this little story.. I can't wait to read the rest 2 parts.. I don't know how or why, because this is not a big book but i connected in a great level with the characters.. And also i feel that i know them and their story well.. I empathize with Katie even though she made mistakes.. Brandon is a multi-billionaire businessman much older than Katie who is a freshman in Columbia, and they fall in love.. Katie lies and they break up.. But the story starts 7 year 3,5 Stars! But the story starts 7 years later, when they meet again and now he is her boss..

View all 6 comments. Jan 28, Tuba Sayed rated it did not like it. I started reading this whilst on my way to college, and oh man, I should've spent my time just staring at the passengers on the bus instead. Books like these are the reason why I have so less faith in humanity. The fact that the male protagonist dumps the female protagonist after screwing her at the most unimaginable place not to forget they did the deed at the most unimaginable place - where you ask? The dumpster, is the reason alone for me to rate this book one star. Feb 14, Kate Kane rated it did not like it.

The fact this was published is amazing. Feb 11, Maureen rated it did not like it Shelves: This was a very mediocre storyline, written poorly and without inspiration. It seemed like a plot the author dreamed up and then used connect-the-dots to write. The characters were flat and unbelievable, the sex was unforgivably boring and the turn of events were laughable and rushed.

Seven years before, Kate fell in love with the much older Brandon--a successful, handsome and possessive businessman. Their whirlwind courtship was perfect Long story short This was a very mediocre storyline, written poorly and without inspiration. Long story short as short as it's told by the author , Brandon finds out about it and ditches Kate in quite the heartless way. Also, did anyone else find it weird he kept calling her "dear"? Now Kate is a "mature" 25 year old woman embarking on the next phase in her career. Even though her relationship with Brandon is all she can think about, she's, like, totally a business woman, you guys.

Almighty Brandon, now in his early 40's--though you wouldn't know that by his actions--just bought the company. Because that's totally realistic. Of course they come face to face, and all Kate can obsess about is how terrible she was to him. All I kept thinking about is how he broke up with her. The two pick up where they left off, their previous anger and hurt fueling yet another boring hook-up. Only this time, it appears Brandon is the one hiding the secret. In short, read this if you have nothing else to do.

I NEED to have the second book right now. That was simply amazing. Aug 17, R. Holmes rated it did not like it. I give it a star for effort, and the time she put into writing it. Sep 05, Silvia rated it it was amazing Shelves: When I first started reading this book about Katie, an 18 year old college freshman, and Brandon, a 35 year old billionaire, I thought this will be quick read for a book challenge I joined! I wasn't expecting to enjoy it! But I did, and quickly 1-clicked the boxed set to read the rest of the follow up books.

This book had me in hysterics and I found myself laughing out loud! One night while out clubbing using fake ID with her two college classmates, Katie steps outside while her frien Hysterical! The same way academics drag their essays to reach the word limit. It is a clear example of how assumptions, overthinking and lack of communication can ruin a relat Full review at- https: It is a clear example of how assumptions, overthinking and lack of communication can ruin a relationship. Mar 12, Kunal Sharma rated it did not like it. I had a hard time reading through this work.

A girl runs away from her wedding. She takes time out later to analyze what just transpired. She reasons with herself and then with her boyfriend who she embarrassed by doing the disappearing act. Nidhi is the main protagonist. Abhay is her much underrated boyfriend. Abhay is too sorted out, this freaks Nidhi out on her wedding day, she expects him to behave differently while I had a hard time reading through this work.

Abhay is too sorted out, this freaks Nidhi out on her wedding day, she expects him to behave differently while he keeps up with the perfectly sorted out demeanor. Or was it the kissing episode involving Abhay and a female friend? Anyways, in the end, things work out fine — I am not going to say if Nidhi and Abhay patch up for sake of readers who still want to read this book. As I stated above, I see Nidhi in an unconventional light — I would never date her.

I believe she over cooks every little incident. I had to go to sleep so many times while reading her letters, I guess I came to know this about myself after reading her letters — I am no love philosopher. Too much emphasis on analysis of what happened just belittles the pure emotional content therein. One of my friend told me when we were little — love is like pickle, take too much and it spoils the whole experience.

Like a banal ritual. Abhay might as well be the marquee husband. Too much of a good guy. No such thing at least as of now, I can vouch on behalf of my species I can tell you that the likes of Nidhi will need to wait another couple of years till Artificial Intelligence truly kicks in and creates something of a cyborg like Abhay. This guy will listen to you patiently when you are confused and angry or just plain confused. Then this cyborg will say something that will make you weak in the knees again. He will never love you like a man.

That will be a good reason to run from weddings. Nikita Singh's latest book 'Letters to My Ex' is very different from her previous books. This book is in the letter-format. It has a unique format of narration. I was very excited about this book since the time when the author announced the book. I have read most of her previous books and loved them. Also, since the title as well as the cover of the book is very attractive and seems interesting, I had really high expectations from this book. The plot is quite simple. The main characters are Nidhi Nikita Singh's latest book 'Letters to My Ex' is very different from her previous books.

The main characters are Nidhi and Abhay. They had been in a relationship for almost five years.

At their engagement, Nidhi calls it off, and thus their long loving relationship comes to an end abruptly. However, the reason for this is unknown at the beginning, which seems confusing. Nidhi decides to pen down her feelings in letter format. Also, Abhay's point of view and feelings has been explored.

You have to read the book to know why Nidhi broke the engagement, and also what happens to them later. The author has well portrayed a romantic story in a different format. The language is lucid, which makes it a very easy read. The book is divided into twelve chapters, each title named after a month. The book is very fast paced. The plot is not very deep and it is quite hollow and cliched. The book at times seems to lack the property to keep the readers glued to the book.

It is very fast paced. It did not quite meet my expectations. Overall, the book is a short, easy light-read and fans of contemporary and romantic fictions can give it a read. You people might like this book. I have always loved writing and reading letters. This is the story of Abhay and Nidhi, a couple who were in love, were about to get engaged. But on the day of the engagement, Nidhi leaves without an explanation. Why did she leave? What will happen to both of them? These two questions form the crux of the story. The narrative is in form of letters,letters written to each other.

I loved the first part of the story and it captured all the emotions one feels after a breakup. The ending was pretty I have always loved writing and reading letters. The ending was pretty predictable Good for a one time read I like the letter-format narration, but somehow Letters to My Ex felt hollow. I could not connect with the emotions and found myself more confused than the protagonist Nidhi.

It felt rushed and unplanned. The only solace was the last few letters, but other than that, it was a disappointing read. Apr 08, Neha rated it liked it Shelves: Feb 24, Pratibha rated it really liked it Shelves: This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers.

To view it, click here. I was so stressed out with work when I started this book late one night. And I finished it in a single sitting. This was so real , so heartfelt and so intimate. I thought of all the sent and unsent emails I wrote in love , after a fight or sometimes even now out of so much overwhelming love that only makes sense with words. Read the detailed review on my blog - https: Jun 17, Ajay rated it really liked it.

I bought this book when its launched but as i read the book's reviews i found out that it's an emotional rollercaoster ride. I don't know what i was thinking. Nikita singh is genius in touching your heart. My only problem with nikita's literary work is that her books finishes fast. I read her books from top to bottom like i even read the barcode behind.

The book is all about unfinshed words.

The Ex Games

I dealt with same thing, not exactly. We just think of what happened in the moment and not what's been piling up in the eyes of the estrogen induced humans. Its about taking a break, hurting each other, getting back together, jelousy and almost everything you see in young-adult fiction. I finished it in 3 days and i consider myself a slow reader. This book proved that "Girls maybe don't know what they want, but guy's don't know what they have until it's gone". Its not her best work but definitely a new format and fresh peice from her.

Apr 20, Jagdeshwari Patil rated it liked it. This book is written in the letter-format which is unique and unusual form of narration. This is my first time reading book by Nikita Singh. The Plot revolves around a couple Abhay and Nidhi. They have been in a Relationship for almost 5 years. As being in a relationship for such a long period of time they naturally decide to get engaged.

Which is Called off by Nidhi. Which stunned everyone even as a reader you wonder why would she do it??? To Cope with the issue Nidhi starts to Pen down her Thoughts and feelings through letters. You have to read this book to understand why Nidhi broke off the Engagement.

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Why she is writing letters to her Ex…? I expected it to be more than just a typical cliche story. It was an Cliche Romance Read with nothing that could grab my attention. Apr 07, Aparna Prabhu rated it really liked it. The use of purple shade on the cover gives out the necessary romantic vibes. The blurb is crisp doesn't divulge any crucial details and piques the curiosity of the reader. To begin with, the narrative was quite different, unlike any other romance novels or any novel of other genre for that matter.

The story was subtly narrated in the form of letters written by Nidhi. The letters beautifully encapsulated the thoughts and emotions felt by her. Her confused state, the way her thoughts constantly spir The use of purple shade on the cover gives out the necessary romantic vibes.

Examples of Short Stories

Her confused state, the way her thoughts constantly spiraled in her mind, her uncertain career choices had a personal connect. Emotions are not known to be constant. They are often known to be fleeting. The letters helped herself to keep a tab on them and cope up with her loss. They were a symbolic of the transition of her relationship from the time of its bloom to the time where it broke off. The pacing was odd and irregular.

There was a point where there was a platonic shift in the plot without any event to justify the change. I also felt that the author could have added more characters, more locations and stretched the story to some more pages. Mar 08, Nidhi rated it liked it. I was pretty distracted in the beginning of the story. Unlike most of the readers, I would have guessed the plot way back.

I like the simplicity with which the plot and character have been created by the author. There is no glamour to describe the demeanor of Abhay or Nidhi the main characters of the novel. An essence of college love have been well described, which would take the readers back to their college days. Yes, every c I was pretty distracted in the beginning of the story. Yes, every college has an eye-candy who is attracted to that nerdy girl. Will Abhay and Nidhi make it to the aisle? You will know once you read those letters written to the Ex.

Every month of the year, a letter was written to describe the turmoil inside. Yes, it works for most of us where you jot down every emotion, happy, sad, angry, and excited. It helps you recollect your thoughts and emotions. Every letter would bring you at a point where you would wish to take sides. It is one of the most innocent love stories, I have ever come across. Jul 09, Keerthi Suresh rated it really liked it.

This was too cute. By the end I was smiling so wide. Feb 16, Shivam Kalra rated it liked it. I think I've found my guilty pleasure. However, I don't feel guilty for liking this book. I think maybe the premise was good. But, it wasn't well executed at all. Docking one star for a badly printed last page.