Header Image

Short Stories Review: One World Two by Chris Brazier, ed.

Title: One World Two: A Second Global Anthology of Short Stories
Author: Chris Brazier, ed
Year published: 2016
Category: Adult fiction
Pages: 250 pages
Rating: 4 out of 5

Location: (my 2022 Google Reading map)Brazil, China, Czech Republic, Canada, Germany, Iran, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, New Zealand, Sierra Leone, Singapore,  South Africa, Turkey, UK,  USA (NY)

SummaryOne World Two is the eagerly awaited follow-up to One World and another globe-trotting collection of stories. But it is more than simply an anthology of short fiction, as it contains representative literature from all over the world, conveying the reader on thought-provoking journeys across continents, cultures and landscapes.

One World Two is even more ambitious than Volume One in its geographic scope, featuring twenty-one writers drawn from every continent. Most of the stories are unique to this volume, while others are appearing for the first time in English (Egypt's Mansoura Ez-Eldin and Brazil's Vanessa Barbara). The themes and writing styles are as richly diverse as their writers' origins.

The collection is built around a loose theme of building bridges. It is interested in the human condition as a dynamic central line linking individuals, cultures and experiences: east and west, north and south, and, perhaps most importantly, past, present and future.

This book features established stars such as Edwidge Danticat (Breath, Eyes, Memory), Viet Thanh Nguyen (The Sympathizer) and Aminatta Forna (The Hired Man) and authors who are steadily building a reputation such as Fan Wu, Ana Menéndez and Daniel Alarcon.

In order of appearance, the authors are: Yewande Omotoso, Viet Thanh Nguyen, Heidi North-Bailey, Ana Menéndez, Mathew Howard, Okwiri Oduor, Desiree Bailey, Vamba Sherif, Alice Melike Ulgezer, Daniel Alarcon, Mansoura Ez-Eldin, Aminatta Forna, Nahid Rachlin, Samuel Munene, Vanessa Barbara, Ret'sepile Makamane, Fan Wu, Olufemi Terry, Balli Kaur Jaswal, Chris Brazier, and Edwidge Danticat. Edited and compiled by Ovo Adagha and Chris Brazier.

Review: I read the anthology One World at the end of December to see if we wanted to give it to teachers in a professional development series that I am running. Then we heard that there is a second volume, so of course I had to read this one, too. And while this volume of stories is really good, it is less useful for our group.

This collection has a more diverse set of stories with more male authors (though not many) and more countries represented. The stories seem to center on one person's experience, but they are not necessarily connected to their country or culture as the first volume. I do like how the authors have created well developed characters, settings, and plots in such short stories. 

If you're looking for something different from your normal reading, this volume will surely delight. And, check out how many challenges I am counting this one for!

Challenges for which this counts:  
  • Alphabet Soup (Author)--A, D, E, N, R, S, T, U, W
  • Alphabet Soup (Title)--O
  • Literary Escapes--Brazil, Czech Republic, Canada, Germany, Iran, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, New Zealand, Sierra Leone, Singapore,  South Africa, Turkey
  • Pop Sugar--Latinx authors (3)

No comments