When I was in college, I read Shirley Jackson’s short story “The Lottery” as part of my twentieth-century literature survey. A good deal of the class was shocked by it. I thought the conceit was *genius.* When I taught a narrative unit in my Comp. I class about three years ago, I decided to include “The Lottery” and pair it with the Reaping scene from The Hunger Games. My students were electrified. They were simultaneously horrified by the concept and curious to see its echoes in contemporary young adult literature (sidenote—this is why, as a teacher, I read young adult literature for professional development. It efficiently achieves what other, more classic works, cannot do for 21st century students: grab their attention). In short: “The Lottery” has been formative for me. I’ve been wanting to read more of Jackson’s work, so I found a copy of a Jackson anthology of short stories, I decided to give it a go. Find out how it went in my full review.
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