Sunday, March 8, 2009


1. Compare and contrast the short story you choose in a given week to the novel we are reading that week. Consider differences in character development, plots, settings and themes. Consider how the length of the form, i.e. short story vs. novel, impacts the story. Which did you prefer in a given week and why.

Hothouse was about a homeless man that was an escaped convict. I think that I would have liked Hothouse more if it were longer. I think that the character development was lacking a little which I felt was the reason why I didn’t feel sorry for John Kelly. I felt the reason why it was lacking was because of the shortness of the story. I actually preferred the short story this week because I felt that Mystic River was too dark for me. I feel like Hothouse could have had a lot of potential if it was a little longer and they gave a little more history of his life. It talked about how he murdered his wife and S.J. Rozan could have made you feel more sorry for John Kelly if story was a little longer. Rozen could have made it seem more the wife’s fault for cheating on him.

2. Do you attribute any differences between the short stories based on the gender of the author? If so, explain what differences you observed.

I felt that S.J. Rozan spent most of the story building up to the last two pages. I thought she did a good job of describing the setting in the little time she had. I also thought Dennis Lehane did a great job of making you feel attached to the characters. So far I feel like women are more known for making me more attached to the characters and Lehane is an exception.

3. Review each short story. What did you like or dislike and why? Did the mystery in the short story work for you, i.e., were you challenged, surprised, satisfied or unsatisfied by what happened in the end.

I liked the story but I don’t feel like there was really a mystery in the story. I felt like it was just a short story, not a short mystery story. I was a little surprised that he died in the ending. I thought that they way the story ended, I realized that she had foreshadowed his death a few pages before so then I wasn’t surprised at all. I didn’t really feel satisfied or unsatisfied with this story, it was just lukewarm. I would have found the ending more upsetting if I were more attached to him.

4. Reflect on the rest of the course, including your thoughts, reactions, observations, etc about the online discussion, the novels and anything else that strikes you as relevant to the course and your experience. DO NOT REPEAT WHAT YOU HAVE POSTED IN THE ONLINE DISCUSSIONS.

I think Rozan could have added one extra page to show the relationship development between John Kelly and Doctor Morse. It also could have been better it told about Doctor Morse being upset that he was shot.


  1. I had also read Hothouse this past week, but didn't have time to research to find out if the author was male or female, so I just read another short story.

    I agree totally with your thoughts about this not being much of a mystery. I, too, felt like I could have used some more bulk to the story, and would have liked to delve further into the circumstances around the encounters of John Kelly and Jan Morse. Theirs could have been an ongoing story...for sure.

  2. All of our discussions for class has really highlighted how broad the Mystery story genre is. I had a lot of preconceived notions and stereo types before starting, and am amazed at the variety that there actually is. I am also amazed at how many of the short story to novel comparisons have comparable elements. Kinda thought it would be more apples and oranges like your read this week.