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Simon T

I've only read one or two of his stories, and I'd challenge him on greatest story writer in English! Well, I mean to say Katherine Mansfield would challenge him, not me myself...
The ones I read were uber-colonial, though, so perhaps I need to read more.

litlove

How interesting - Kipling is one of those authors I have never fancied reading (although his line about meeting with triumph and disaster and treating those two imposters just the same is a favourite of mine). You can make any author sound fascinating, Danielle!

Mark Thwaite

I think you can abhor Kipling's "political views which he shared with many millions" whilst still rating him as a writer...

Is it me, or is Kipling's star rising again? He seems to be being invoked a fair bit at the moment ...

Dorothy W.

Interesting -- I'm like Litlove and haven't been interested in reading Kipling, but it's cool that you are doing it, and I can learn about him through you! I wonder, too, about the best short story writer in English -- surely that editor is a bit biased!

Danielle

Simon--It seems like I often read that phrase "greatest short story writer" when I pick up these collections. I'm not really sure who really is (Chekhov?--but he didn't write in English). I was sort of surprised when I saw it applied to Kipling as I've sort of considered his famous books to be for YA readers, but I am willing to keep and open mind. I think Mansfield would give him a run for his money, too. It will be interesting to read a selection from his work and see how the stories compare certainly.
Litlove--To be honest I hadn't really considered reading him either until Cornflower choose him for her book group. I figured it would be a good way to get in another short story author, since I am trying to read more this year. It should be an interesting experience.
Mark--Certainly the editor of this collection is quite enthusiastic about Kipling. When I read the Wikipedia entry it sounded a bit more like the jury was still out about his place in literature, though they did say he was an innovator in the short story form. History is such a messy thing sometimes. Even if it was common to think of native populations in the way people did, it can make for uncomfortable reading now to hear the N word used so casually. But I think you're right that his writing can stand on its own merits aside from his political views. It will be interesting to read the whole collection and discuss it later with other readers.

Danielle

Dorothy--Yes, that's quite a claim, isn't it? It seems like every major collection by a famous author gets some sort of similar mention--I'm not quite sure who to believe really. I looked up the editor and he was a Kipling scholar--he was born in 1929 and died in 1998 and apparently he did a lot to stimulate interest in Kipling and further the study of his work. I guess he would be a bit biased from the sounds of things.

Isabel

How are you finding his writing style? I started on Dicken's Somebody's Luggage and I am trouble getting into the language. He writes a bit differently from today's novelist.

Lisa

Good idea to get a head start on this one. I may try to do the same thing. I've been reading along with the Cornflower group, but I don't always get to participate in the discussions until later. I've always been fascinated by India. This story sounds quite good.

iliana

I don't think I'd ever been interested in a Kipling book but you do make this one sound great. Plus, short stories may be a good way to get introduced to the writing! I'll be looking forward to hearing your progress on this one.

Jeane

I always enjoyed the books he wrote for children, but never tried his short stories or works aimed at an adult audience. I didn't know he was such an admired short story author!

Jessica

I've been anxious to read some Kipling ever since My Boy Jack was featured on PBS's Masterpiece. I'll look forward to updates on your progress through this collection.

Danielle

Isabel--His writing seems very accessible. The only thing is he uses some foreign words, though there are footnotes with explanations which helps!
Lisa--I wish I could have read more of the books they've picked, but I read when I can. It will be interesting to see what people think of Kipling's work. I know I need to start early with so many short stories! I'm interested in Indian culture as well.
Iliana--He has never really been high up on my list as well, but I'm willing to give him a try. I'll let you know how it goes!
Jeane--To be honest it was news to me as well. I am trying to read more short stories and am trying to orient myself in the form--not sure which authors are the 'must reads' so I'm sort of doing this randomly.
Jessica--I didn't realize Masterpiece showed one of his works. I'll have to see if my library has it. Thanks for the heads up!

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