60 Short Stories, Poems, and Essays You MUST Read This Summer (Reader Generated)

During the last two weeks I’ve been sharing the books that my readers have recommended in the past. This is the last list of works that my readers love. Enjoy!

much love,


60 Short Stories, Poems, and Essays You MUST Read This Summer


Recommendations taken from 3 Short Stories You MUST Read Before You Die 

A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner

Anything by Alice Munro

Story of An Hour by Kate Chopin

The Lottery by Shirley Jackson

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson, M.D.

Johnathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach

The Dead by James Joyce

Anything by Ernest Hemingway

Anything by Neil Gaiman

Anything by Margaret Atwood

The Birthday Cake by Daniel Lyons

Cinnamon by Neil Gaiman

The Ones Who Walk Away From The Omelas by Ursula Le Guin

Anything by Amy Bloom

My Grandfather’s Blessings by Rachel Remen

Nine Stories by J.D. Salinger

For Esme with Love and Squalor by J. D. Salinger.

A Christmas Memory by Truman Capote

Cathedral by Raymond Carver

What We Talk About When We Talk About Love by Raymond Carver

A Small, Good Thing by Raymond Carver

Brokeback Mountain by Annie Proulx

Tits Up In A Ditch by Annie Proulx

Them Old Cowboy Songs by Annie Proulx

Bullet In The Brain by Tobias Wolff

You’re Ugly, Too by Lorrie Moore

For The Relief of Unbearable Urges by Nathan Englander

Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned by Wells Tower

Snows of Kilmanjaro by Ernest Hemingway

The Pit and The Pendulum by Edgar Allen Poe

The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allen Poe

Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? by Joyce Carol Oates

Bodies in The Moonlight by Langston Hughes

Spanish Blood by Langston Hughes


Recommendations taken from 3 Poems You MUST Read Before You Die

Song by Brigit Pegeen Kelly

Famous by Naomi Shihab Nye

The Life by Li-Young Lee

Poety by Pablo Neruda

If I can stop one heart from breaking by Emily Dickinson

The Sonnets to Orpheus by Rainer Marie Rilke

Slow Air by Robin Robertson

Memory by Arthur Rimbaud

Love’s Philosphy by Percy Bysshe Shelley

Renascence by Edna St. Vincent Millay

Daddy by Sylvia Plath

Still I Rise by Maya Angelou

Once More… From The Beginning by Wendy Bertsch

Mending Wall by Robert Frost

Winter Trees by William Carlos Williams

Anything by Ambrose Bierce

Anything by e.e. cummings


Recommendations taken from 5 Essays You MUST Read Before You Die

A Vindication of The Rights of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft

Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau

Common Sense by Thomas Paine

Letter From Brimingham Jail by Martin Luther King Jr.

The Relativity of Wrong by Asimov

Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln

What short stories, poems, or essays are on your reading list this summer?

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10 comments on “60 Short Stories, Poems, and Essays You MUST Read This Summer (Reader Generated)

  1. Christina says:

    Hi Ollin:) I have to add Nathaniel Hawthorne’s short stories to your list. I love his writing, and his life is fascinating.

  2. aha, I had been looking for such things , thank you for posting

  3. Alexis says:

    I LOVE Jonathan Livingston Seagull! Two other greats by Bach: “One” and “Illusions” (these are novels, not short stories.)

    I just read Hemingway’s The Snows of Kilmanjaro. Like so many other short stories (all of Annie Proulx’s, for example), it depressed me. I’m just not that into short stories, I guess (although I did enjoy Strout’s Olive Kitteridge and right now I’m loving Jhumpa Lahiri’s Unaccustomed Earth.)

    You have some great classics on this list, too. And I’m looking forward to checking out the essays.

    • Ollin says:

      Interesting points about short stories. I have read very few, that’s one of the reasons I asked for recs for my readers. I’ll have to check most of these out including the ones you recommend.

  4. clarbojahn says:

    Here is one book I highly recommend to all writers. I just posted a book review on my blog about it.
    It is called “Toxic Feedback” by Joni Cole about the feedback we as writers need to get to the final edition of our work. It is written with humor and kindness and had me racing through the book. It has interviews of thirteen authors and editors about their feedback stories which all writers love to read and know. Enjoy

  5. […] Speaking of short stories, Ollin Morales give us a huge list of must-reads, 60 Short Stories, Poems, and Essays You Must Read This Summer. […]

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