My mom was annoyed when Appalachian Serenade, the novella prequel to Miracle in a Dry Season, released via e-book ONLY. Like any good grandma, she wanted to hold that baby in her hands.

And as of next summer, she’ll be able to do that thanks to a novella collection being released by my publisher. Appalachian Serenade will be included with four other novellas from the likes of Karen Witemeyer and Regina Jennings for a sweet, romance collection all in one book.

We’ve talked before about novellas and how some folks love them and snap them up like little appetizers while others just find them too short for satisfaction. I was on the too short side of the discussion for a long time . . . you know, until I was invited to write one!

Now I’m beginning to appreciate novellas as a way to sample an author without committing my limited reading time to a full novel. And collections like this one are sort of a Whitman’s sampler of authors.

I’ve noticed lately, there are quite a few of these “sampler packs” on the market.

  • There’s A Match Made in Texas from Bethany House with four stories loosely tied together by overlapping characters;match in Texas
  • Autumn Brides from Zondervan with three novellas (there are also Summer, Spring, and Winter collections); and
  • The Most Eligible Bachelor collection from Barbour Books with NINE stories to keep you entertained.

Those are just a few I know of off the top of my head.

They take me back to my high school days when I was hooked on short story collections (Ray Bradbury was a favorite!) and consumed them like popcorn. I loved that I could read one or two just about anywhere, anytime. (Of course I was WAY more focused back then! I think I was carrying less stuff around in my head.)

So what do you think about these collections?And if you love one author and buy a collection she’s included in, do you think the other stories will inspire you to find some new favorite authors?