The Ultimate Anthology: "Mrs. Todd's Shortcut"

Any solid speculative anthology should contain a tale or two by Stephen King. "Mrs. Todd's Shortcut" takes one of those slots in my collection.

What's not to like about a sprite of a feisty woman whose obsession with shortcuts takes her into an age-reversing alternate dimension? That narrative voice, a first-person piece told through the eyes of an older caretaker, is just quintesessntially King. At times humorous and horrific, and always atmospheric and unsettling, this is one of his finest.

I think that description of the ghastly frog the size of a large dog is one of my favorites in weird fiction (saw a Colorado River Toad at the zoo this past weekend--that sucker was a monster!)...

To date:

"Mrs. Todd's Shortcut" ~ Stephen King

"Voluntary Committal" ~ Joe Hill

"The Pear Shaped Man" ~ George R.R. Martin

"The Small Assassin" ~ Ray Bradbury

"Professor Gottesman and the Indian Rhinoceros" ~ Peter S. Beagle


James Everington said...

Oh excellent, an imaginary anthology! I'm always making up these kind of lists and make-believe anthologies in my head.

Some great choices so far - I've read three of the five. You obviously have good taste so I'll look up the others...!

Aaron Polson said...

This is shaping into a special, special collection. Keep 'em coming.

Daniel W. Powell said...

Good Morning, Aaron and James,

Thanks for dropping by! I love these little exercises myself. I used to read slush as an editor at the Clackamas Literary Review, and I always wondered how a collection of all my favorites would shape up.

I suppose I'm about 25% of the way there!

You Know When It's Good

If you spend any real time at the word processor, you understand that sometimes the writing flows and you just know in your heart and in you...