Top Five Stories: 2011–2012

A young soldier loses his arm and his self-respect during the First World War. A chess player from a small Siberian town travels to a forbidding Cold War Leningrad to compete. Shortly after Kristallnacht, a teenager desperately tries to get a job, in his desire to fight the Nazis. A boy from a rural American town has an astonishing talent his parents can’t understand. After her husband’s death, a woman finally surrenders to her grief. Whether the writers showcased here depict a world close to home or far beyond our experience, each presents characters at depth, taking you into the heart of a wonderfully original story. Don’t rush. Savor each one.

If you would like to send a story for consideration as a Story of the Week, please see our guidelines. Each September the Top Five Stories are selected for special notice.

Congratulations to the winners. Each receives a $400 award.