Nuala O’Connor’s short story about Nora Barnacle, and her first meetings with James Joyce.
Fathers and Sons
‘For a while it wasn’t clear how good he would become, and then it was. He went up the rankings, stopped, and started going down.’
‘It’s dangerous like a very powerful doorbell. / Or a portrait covered with a blanket.’
Brother in Ice
‘My brother is a man trapped in ice. He looks at us through it; he is there and he is not there.’
‘We hope that the copilot knows the terrain well. That his mask of youth conceals the face of a seasoned veteran of war. That he knows the minefields because he helped plant them.’
‘She is luscious / and plump like marshmallow; part edible baby, / part nosy neighbour.’
A Mischief of Rats
‘They slept curled together in a hammock, little scraps of fur, hearts beating madly.’ Joanna Kavenna on her pet rats, Kat Bjelland and Courtney Love.
The Great Israeli novel of War and Doubt
Granta editor Anne Meadows writes about Khirbet Khizeh, the great Israeli novel of war and doubt.
‘even more it was a wish for boundless spaces, a wish for the inexpressibly wide and broad, for the unharnessing of human life’ – New poetry by Sharmistha Mohanty.
A Time for Everything
‘It can almost seem as if God was genuinely concerned about mankind.’ Translated by James Anderson.
Karl Ove Knausgaard | The Proust Questionnaire
'What is your most unappealing habit? Maybe all the brain-like chewing gums I leave behind everywhere I work.'
The Women Are in Insurrection | Discoveries
Who has been nominated for the The Women’s Prize 2018 longlist?
'Childhood felt like a waiting room, a transitory phase between birth and the life we wanted.'
Lisa Moore | Notes on Craft
‘I wanted to explore what a “likeness” is, and how the act of capturing a person through a portrait might compare to writing a character.’
‘All those appetizing vessels exposed and available, O how delightfully vulnerable they are, it brings a tear to the eye.’
Téa Obreht on a chance encounter with a moose in Wyoming, for Granta 142: Animalia
‘This journey around the outskirts of the Jungle went in a little and came out wondering, well that is not what I would have called a jungle.’
A Not-So-Pretty History of Pet Care
‘One day after the next I would figure out what was needed, learn from my mistakes, pay attention to what worked.’
‘I made tea while the astronaut sat at our kitchen table and gazed out the window.’
The Rat Snipers
‘When they stand on their hind legs, arms up, wrists limp, rats can take on a beguiling sort of personhood.’
Large Black Rooster
‘Early one morning in the month of June, someone ran over a huge black rooster on County Road W in Wisconsin hill country.’
The Bible As Literature, Literature As Scripture
'Literature and literary criticism took me away from the Church as a teenager, and literature and literary criticism brought me back to it later.'
Azareen Van der Vliet Oloomi | Five Things Right Now
‘The only recurring emotion I remember experiencing was a kind of manic delight at procrastinating.’
Abuse, Silence, and the Light That Virginia Woolf Switched On
When Virginia Woolf was thirteen, she was abused by her half-brother George Duckworth. No one believed her - not even her biographers. April Ayers Lawson on Woolf's abuse, and her own.
Equal Recognition | Discoveries
In an article for the LA Review of Books, Deborah Smith discusses the politics of literary translation and the backlash she received after winning the Man Booker International Prize.
There Is No Light of the World But the World
‘The mountain rises and sleeps backward / into a cloud-captured sun’
‘Estuary English, the tongue of the river mouth, open vowels, clipped syllables that nonetheless spilled into one: I found it hard to listen to. The words snapped at my ears: malicious fish.’
Cold Mountain: Premières esquisses
Ce qui s’est passé par la suite relève de la folie, folie des vents s’entredéchirant, folie de l’homme que ces vents avaient poussé chez moi.
What came after was the stuff of madness, the madness of warring winds, the madness of the man these winds had delivered up to me.
‘By the dog the minced oaths, / the god-wounds, the solemnly / declared chronical maladies.’
Doubling and Redoubling | Discoveries
Photographs, e-fiction and daylight saving time. Our favourite pieces published elsewhere this week.
Mary O’Donoghue | Notes on Craft
In this new series, we give authors a space to discuss the way they write – from technique and style to inspirations that inform their craft.