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Waifs and Strays

O. Henry

Book Overview: 

These 12 O. Henry stories all deal with waifs and strays in one way or another; people who have somehow become adrift in the current of life. Will they find their way on their own or be helped by kind hearted folk or perhaps, stay a waif and stray, somehow outside the normal life of society? All naturally have the wonderful O. Henry beautiful way with words and people. So if you are in the mood to enjoy some sensuous sounds and convoluted flowing phrases unique to William Sydney Porter, give these a listen. And of course the endings cannot ever be predicted. Ever!

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .omedy lost his last feather and the company broke up. The ponies trotted away and I was left in the window ownerless. The janitor gave me to a refined comedy team on the eighth floor, and in six weeks I had been set in the window of five different flats I took on experience and put out two more leaves.

Miss Carruthers, of the refined comedy team—did you ever see her cross both feet back of her neck?—gave me to a friend of hers who had made an unfortunate marriage with a man in a store. Consequently I was placed in the window of a furnished room, rent in advance, water two flights up, gas extra after ten o'clock at night. Two of my leaves withered off here. Also, I was moved from one room to another so many times that I got to liking the odor of the pipes the expressmen smoked.

I don't think I ever had so dull a time as I did with this lady. There was never anything amusing going on inside—she was devoted to her husband, an. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I find that O. Henry is a reliable read for humourous social commentary, with observations that make you laugh at human nature and at the society that forms around it. This collection of twelve stories lies fully within that tradition. While some of the pieces are better than others, there is lots h

Well-written and most of the stories have a surprise twist at the end that adds that something extra. Some of the tales are written a little old-fashioned but most will appeal to the modern reader.