Two Kinds by Amy Tan

In Two Kinds by Amy Tan we have the theme of hope, identity, rebellion, responsibility, blame, independence and acceptance. Narrated in the first person by a woman called Jing-mei Woo the story is a memory piece and after reading the story the reader realises that Tan may be exploring the theme of hope. Jing-mei’s mother has hopes for her daughter. […]

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Dreams by Anton Chekhov

In Dreams by Anton Chekhov we have the theme of appearance, identity, struggle, freedom, hopes and aspirations. Taken from his The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and from the beginning of the story it becomes clear to the reader that Chekhov may be exploring the theme of appearance. The […]

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My Greatest Ambition by Morris Lurie

In My Greatest Ambition by Morris Lurie we have the theme of hope, aspiration, disappointment, rejection and disillusion. Narrated in the first person by a man called Lurie (assumed to be the author) the story is a memory piece and the reader realises from the beginning of the story that Lurie may be exploring the theme of hope and aspiration. […]

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The Rain Horse by Ted Hughes

In The Rain Horse by Ted Hughes we have the theme of disappointment, connection, struggle, control, fear and change. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises from the beginning of the story that Hughes may be exploring the theme of disappointment. The protagonist on reaching his destination looks around and is disappointed by what he […]

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There Will Come Soft Rains by Ray Bradbury

In There Will Come Soft Rains by Ray Bradbury we have the theme of suffering, dependency, empathy and nature. Taken from his The Martian Chronicles collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Bradbury may be exploring the theme of suffering. It is left to the […]

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The Taste of Metal by John Updike

In The Taste of Metal by John Updike we have the theme of infidelity, control, dominance, loneliness and selfishness. Taken from his The Early Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Updike may be exploring the theme of infidelity. Not only has Eleanor’s husband […]

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A Day’s Wait by Ernest Hemingway

In A Day’s Wait by Ernest Hemingway we have the theme of fear, courage, responsibility, isolation, confusion, acceptance and control. Taken from his The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed man (father) and after reading the story the reader realises that Hemingway may be exploring the theme of fear. Schatz fears […]

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Engine Trouble by R.K. Narayan

In Engine Trouble by R.K Narayan we have the theme of practicality, hope, luck, responsibility and authority. Taken from his An Astrologer’s Day and Other Stories collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Narayan may be exploring the theme of practicality. The narrator has no […]

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The Blind Dog by R.K. Narayan

In The Blind Dog by R.K. Narayan we have the theme of struggle, connection, greed, freedom, control and loyalty. Taken from his An Astrologer’s Day and Other Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Narayan may be exploring the theme of struggle. Both the […]

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The Luncheon by W. Somerset Maugham

In The Luncheon by W. Somerset Maugham we have the theme of struggle, innocence, greed, responsibility, selfishness and appearance. Taken from his Collected Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Maugham may be exploring the theme of struggle. The narrator is not a […]

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Salvatore by W. Somerset Maugham

In Salvatore by W. Somerset Maugham we have the theme of responsibility, acceptance, happiness, dignity and humility. Taken from his Collected Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed narrator and from the beginning of the story the reader realises that Maugham may be exploring the theme of responsibility. Salvatore is responsible for looking […]

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The Verger by W. Somerset Maugham

In The Verger by W. Somerset Maugham we have the theme of appearance, opportunity, dedication, independence and humility. Taken from his Collected Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Maugham may be exploring the theme of appearance. Albert Edward doesn’t like wearing his […]

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The Stoat by John McGahern

In The Stoat by John McGahern we have the theme of selfishness, fear, responsibility, rejection and honesty. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that McGahern may be exploring the theme of selfishness. The protagonist’s father on hearing that Miss McCabe has had a heart attack decides to abandon any notions […]

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Where Love Is, God Is by Leo Tolstoy

In Where Love Is, God Is by Leo Tolstoy we have the theme of grief, doubt, struggle, hope, growth, contentment and connection. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises from the beginning of the story that Tolstoy may be exploring the theme of grief. Martin has lived a difficult life with his wife and children […]

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Under the Banyan Tree by R.K. Narayan

In Under the Banyan Tree by R.K. Narayan we have the theme of story-telling, isolation, hardship, escape, fear, failure, loyalty and selfishness. Taken from his An Astrologer’s Day and Other Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and from the beginning of the story the reader realises that Narayan may be exploring the […]

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Too Dear! by Leo Tolstoy

In Too Dear! by Leo Tolstoy we have the theme of governance, justice, morality and power. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Tolstoy may be exploring the theme of governance. Every time that the King encounters a problem with the prisoner he calls upon his Council of State. Who […]

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The Phoenix by Sylvia Townsend Warner

In The Phoenix by Sylvia Townsend Warner we have the theme of greed, conflict, cruelty, sensationalism, responsibility and control. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Warner may be exploring the theme of greed. Poldero’s main function is to make money. When he purchases the phoenix he sees that he […]

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At Hiruharama by Penelope Fitzgerald

In At Hiruharama by Penelope Fitzgerald we have the theme of prosperity, aspirations, struggle, love and contentment. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Fitzgerald may be exploring the theme of prosperity. Both Tanner and Kitty (Tanner’s wife) have started out fresh in life after they have gotten married and […]

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Journey by Shirley Geok-Lin Lim

In Journey by Shirley Geok-Lin Lim we have the theme of responsibility, powerlessness, coming of age, tradition, fear and innocence. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Lim may be exploring the theme of responsibility. The unnamed female protagonist is responsible for getting her mother’s medication. Though she has to […]

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Ten Indians by Ernest Hemingway

In Ten Indians by Ernest Hemingway we have the theme of love, rejection, heartbreak, innocence, loss, hope, acceptance and conformity. Taken from his The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by any unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Hemingway may be exploring the theme of love and rejection. Nick […]

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The Three-Day Blow by Ernest Hemingway

In Three-Day Blow by Ernest Hemingway we have the theme of friendship, respect, commitment, change, loss and letting go. Taken from this The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator after reading the story the reader realises that Hemingway may be exploring the theme of friendship. Both Bill and Nick are […]

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In Another Country by Ernest Hemingway

In Another Country by Ernest Hemingway we have the theme of insecurity, alienation, struggle and connection. Taken from his The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed narrator though many critics do believe that the narrator is Nick Adams. A character found in some of Hemingway’s other stories. What is also interesting […]

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Minds in Ferment by Anton Chekhov

In Minds in Ferment by Anton Chekhov we have the theme of curiosity, control, independence, change, corruption and authority. Taken from his The Complete Short Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Chekhov may be exploring the theme of curiosity. Each individual who looks […]

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Rebecca by Donald Barthelme

In Rebecca by Donald Barthelme we have the theme of acceptance, insecurity, appearance, jealousy and love. Taken from his Sixty Stories collection the story is narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator and after reading the story the reader realises that Barthelme may be exploring the theme of acceptance. Rebecca cannot accept the fact that her surname is […]

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The Mark on the Wall by Virginia Woolf

In The Mark on the Wall by Virginia Woolf we have the theme of uncertainty, religion, change, trust and gender roles. Taken from her The Complete Shorter Fiction collection the story is narrated in the first person by an unnamed female narrator and Woolf appears to be using stream of consciousness. Just as an individual while in thought might jump […]

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