Monday, January 31, 2011

Reader's Diary #684- Langston Hughes: Thank You, M'am

I've long considered myself a fan of Langston Hughes' poetry, but it was only recently that I discovered that Hughes also wrote short stories.

So, like all curious readers, I had to check it out. "Thank you, M'am" is about a teenage boy who tries to steal a purse from a lady named Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones. However, he soon finds that he has bitten off more than he can chew.

It's not a bad story, it's well written in terms of description, dialogue and premise, but Jones' character is somewhat cliched. Tough, wise, spunky and yet kind black women aren't necessarily boring, but when we've seen them this often in TV shows and movies, it's hard to take such a character seriously anymore. Perhaps when Hughes wrote this story, characters such as Jones were unknown to many people in the world, but I can't say she holds up well today.

(Did you write a post for Short Story Monday? If so, please leave a link in the comments below.)


Anonymous said...

Same as you, I did not know until recently about his short stories. I will have to check him out at some stage.

I did not write one review this week, but three!


Teddy Rose said...

I haven't read and=y Hughes before. Probably because I don't read much poetry but I will have to check him out. I read another Oscar Wilde: