Many of these earlier stories lack the subtlety that I love so much in his more recent work. Some of them that don't have it are strong stories anyway, but they are more "ordinary" shorts, for lack of a better word. Some of the stories that do have that subtlety are more like sketches than stories, and a couple of them are kind of disturbing. Well worth reading, if you are a PE fan and can get your hands on this book. I was able to get the e-book from the new york public library.