Arts and Culture

Eight of the Best Short Stories Set in Colorado

Here are eight of our favorite short stories set in Colorado.
Here are eight of our favorite short stories set in Colorado. Marketa, Flickr

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click to enlarge Million Dollar Highway - FLAMOUROUX, FLICKR
Million Dollar Highway
flamouroux, Flickr
"Mud Season"
Antonya Nelson

For anyone who has driven Colorado's Million Dollar Highway, veering off into an endless pit is an unnerving possibility. This story, set in Durango, deals with the aftermath of a daughter's death on a high mountain pass. Written in Nelson’s trademark hyperrealist fashion, the story is both haunting and beautiful.

“White Devils and Cockroaches”
Manuel Ramos

Featuring crooked Capitol Hill landlords and a handful of misfits, this story introduced readers to González, a down-on-his-luck Chicano lawyer. González morphed over the years into Luis Móntez, a familiar character from Ramos’s five mystery novels set in Denver. And, hey, the story first appeared in Westword in 1986. Now, that’s homegrown.

"Pale Horse, Pale Rider"
Katherine Anne Porter

Pulitzer-Prize winner Katherine Anne Porter’s "Pale Horse, Pale Rider," a heartbreaking love story with a good dose of fever dreams, is set along Colfax, in the mountains, and parts of Capitol Hill. This long story (Porter detested the word ‘novella’) centers around the magnitude of Denver deaths due to influenza in 1918.

“Regaining Flight”
Gary Schanbacher

Set in Denver, "Regaining Flight" is the story of Wes, a construction manager from the Western Slope whose ex-wife accuses him of losing his roots. The story charts his new romance with a vet from back east. Told in tight, understated prose, there are beautiful descriptions of Colorado’s varied landscapes, as well as deft observations of human character.

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