Selected Shorts: Episode 4: “Selected Shorts Gift Set: Take a Seat”

Guest host Robert Sean Leonard presents four stories about sitting down to a meal, or a drink, with surprising results. First, the legendary Henry Miller tells us about the dinner party from Hell in “Soiree in Hollywood”—his interior monologue is a running attack on greed, pretension, and ignorance. Joshua Malina reads. In a classic Roald Dahl tale, “Lamb to the Slaughter,” Catherine O’Hara is the sweet housewife with a big secret. Israeli writer Etgar Keret is known for his off-kilter tales, and in “Halibut” a disenchanted millennial has a heart-to-heart with the fish on his lunch plate. Josh Radnor does the talking for both. The distinguished writer Robert Coover, now in his eighties, contemplates life and death in the beautifully compressed “Going for a Beer,” read by Selected Shorts’ late host and founder, Isaiah Sheffer.

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