Unexpected Developments

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Sunday, August 08, 2010

A summer vacation, a romantic tryst, and a key business trip don’t turn out the way the characters in these two stories expected. 

In Shirley Jackson’s “The Summer People,” the “people” in question cross an invisible line when they decide to stay on in their summer cottage past Labor Day—with harrowing consequences.  Jackson is best known for the eerie “The Lottery,” and this little tale partakes of some of its sinister imaging of the hidden lives of small communities. The reader is the stage, screen and television actor Rene Auberjonois.

“Luggage tends to look alike,” as a woman traveling to meet her lover, and a man plotting to bring down a business rival, discover when they wind up with each other’s in Maeve Binchy’s “The Wrong Suitcase.”  And that’s not all that’s wrong, as you’ll hear in this lively read by Sex and the City alum Cynthia Nixon.

“The Summer People” by Shirley Jackson, read by Rene Auberjonois

“The Wrong Suitcase” by Maeve Binchy, read by Cynthia Nixon.

The musical interlude is Some Connections, by James Willey, played by the Esterhazy Quartet.  The SELECTED SHORTS theme is Roger Kellaway’s “Come to the Meadow.”

For additional works featured on SELECTED SHORTS, please visit

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Rene Auberjonois and Cynthia Nixon
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