McSweeney's Enchanted Chamber of Astonishing Stories

McSweeney's Enchanted Chamber of Astonishing Stories

by Michael Chabon

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Michael Chabon is back with a brand-new collection that reinvigorates the stay-up-all-night, edge-of-the seat, fingernail-biting, page-turning tradition of literary short stories, featuring Margaret Atwood, Stephen King, Peter Straub, David Mitchell, Jonathan Lethem, Heidi Julavits, Roddy Doyle, and more!

Margaret Atwood- Lusus Naturae

David Mitchell- What You Do Not Know You Want

Jonathan Lethem- Vivian Relf

Ayelet Waldman - Minnow

Steve Erickson- Zeroville

Stephen King- Lisey and the Madman

Jason Roberts - 7C

Heidi Julavits- The Miniaturist

Roddy Doyle - The Child

Daniel Handler - Delmonico

Charles D’Ambrosio - The Scheme of Things

Poppy Z. Brite - The Devil of Delery Street

China Mieville- Reports of Certain Events in London

Joyce Carol Oates - The Fabled Light-house at Vi–a del Mar

Peter Straub - Mr. Aickman’s Air Rifle

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780307426819
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/18/2007
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 352
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

About the Editor

Michael Chabon's works of fiction include The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, A Model World, Wonder Boys, and Were-wolves in Their Youth. His work has appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's, Esquire, and Playboy and in a number of anthologies, among them Prize Stories 1999: The O. Henry Awards. He lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife, Ayelet Waldman, also a novelist, and their children.


Berkeley, California

Date of Birth:

May 24, 1963

Place of Birth:

Washington, D.C.


B.A., University of Pittsburgh; M.F.A., University of California at Irvine

Table of Contents

"Lusus Naturae" by Margaret Atwood
"What You Do Not Know You Want" by David Mitchell
"Vivian Relf" by Jonathan Lethem
"Minnow" by Ayelet Waldman
"Zeroville" by Steve Erickson
"Lisey and the Madman" by Stephen King
"7C" by Jason Roberts
"The Miniaturist" by Heidi Julavits
"The Child" by Roddy Doyle
"Delmonico" by Daniel Handler
"The Scheme of Things" by Charles D'Ambrosio
"The Devil of Delery Street" by Poppy Z. Brite
"Reports of Certain Events in London" by China Miéville
"The Fabled Light-House at Viña Del Mar" by Joyce Carol Oates
"Mr. Aickman's Air Rifle" by Peter Straub

About the Contributors

Customer Reviews

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McSweeney's Enchanted Chamber of Astonishing Stories 2.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
clfisha on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Short stories collections are usually a mixed bag and there is enough variance in here to accommodate different tastes but that also means whilst all stories are ok very few actually stand out. It says astonishing stories but its mostly a mix really of horror and tales of the unexpected, so if that¿s your bag and the impressive list of authors intrigues then it might be worth your time, it certainly has one of the best book covers I have seen this year :)Anyway the stories I really liked (out of 15):-Lisey and the Madman by Stephen King - A mesmerising portrayal of character as an author's wife, coping with an violent attack on her husband.-Delmonico by Damon Handler (yes that¿s a pseudonym) - Another one with wonderful characters. It's a straight crime story but beautifully written.-Reports of Certain Events in London by China Mieville - A wonderful tale of cults and feral streets, with intriguing letters and documents of expeditions. Sadly it¿s one I have seen in other collections-7c Jason Roberts - a unsettling and truly odd short story about one mans madness.
yoyogod on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Wow, I'm glad I won this book in a contest, because if I'd paid for it, I'd feel ripped off. The stories are very much a mixed bag. I really enjoyed the stories by China Mieville, Daniel Handler, and Jason Roberts. I thought the stories by Margaret Atwood, Ayelet Waldman, Heidi Julavits, Poppy Z. Brite, and Joyce Carol Oates were okay. The stories by Stephen King, Jonathan Letham, and Charles D'Ambrosio were boring. The stories by Steve Erikson, Roddy Doyle, and Peter Straub just left me confused. David Mitchell's story was so bad I nearly gave up on the book.
figre on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
You¿d think I¿d know better. You¿d think I¿d learn. But then, I am so confused. ¿What I Should Have Learned¿ - an essay for an assignment from 3rd grade teacher Mrs. Clonts. I enjoyed next to nothing with the McSweeney name on in. I have tried three ¿McSweeney¿s Quarterly Concerns¿, and¿nothing. I mean, I can only remember one piece of one story and, while I feel like it was akin to ¿The Most Dangerous Game¿, I know that couldn¿t have been it. ¿Why I Keep Falling Into the Trap¿ a fantasy written for extra credit in Mrs. Cornet¿s 7th grade class. The only McSweeney¿s that provided any interest to me was the Mammoth Treasury of Thrilling Tales ¿ a collection that harkened back to old style science fiction. I assumed I would see the same in this collection. I also enjoy Michael Chabon¿s work (and he edited the Mammoth Treasure). Finally, in spite of my less than luke-warm response to other McSweeney collections, I am actually rapturous in my feelings for Eggers work on ¿The Best American Non-Required Reading¿ collections. ¿What I Read for the Month of August (Pt II)¿ a critical analysis prepared for ¿Reading and Liking It¿- Mr. McClain¿s critical reading class for high school sophomores. There is little to warrant the time in this collection. Most of these pieces read as if the authors just learned the genre (science fiction, suspense, terror ¿ I guess it goes a long way to say I can¿t really figure out the genre this is meant to homage.) They are trite ideas that aren¿t even really explored ¿ a kind of ¿Gee, here¿s a neat idea. Don¿t you think it¿s neat, too? Okay, it was neat, I¿m done.¿ I walked away from most wondering, ¿So what?¿ Now, there are experienced people here (Stephen King, Peter Straub) and, while these stories are fine, it doesn¿t feel like their best work. Look, that is enough. I was going to go on more, but I¿ve run out of archival essays, and it isn¿t worth your time to read more bad news. Likewise, it isn¿t worth your time to read this collection. Snag a couple of the stories if you¿re kind of interested, but good luck finding the ones that are adequate.
sturlington on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I bought this short story collection for a never-before-published new story by Stephen King, but ultimately, I was disappointed by the caliber of all the stories in the anthology, including King¿s. Either the short story form has lost all meaning for me, or these great authors ¿ such as Margaret Atwood, Peter Straub, Joyce Carol Oates, Jonathan Lethem and King ¿ are merely phoning it in.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago