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Best Book of 1950: A Natural History of Trees by Donald Culross Peattie

James Pogue

‘Now more than ever environmentalists need to remember what it’s like to write for that real world.’

The Online Edition

Best Book of 1868: Dostoevsky’s The Idiot

Laurie Sheck

‘The beauty of The Idiot lies in its opposition to closed systems.’

The Online Edition

Best Book of 2013: When the World Became White by Dalia Betolin-Sherman

Mira Rashty

‘New poetic expressions can still emerge and evolve in Hebrew – an ancient and almost prehistoric language, with its grumbling sound’

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Best Book of 2008: Atmospheric Disturbances by Rivka Galchen

Mika Taylor

‘Rivka Galchen’s debut novel is one of my favourites from the last few years.’

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Best Book of 2015: Letters Against the Firmament

Max Porter

‘So much good poetry is being written in and about and for this ghastly time. I cling to it.’

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Best Book of 1994: The Land of Green Plums by Herta Müller

Eliza Robertson

‘You'd have to have lived through that bleakness. You'd have to know with your body, your hands, your eyes, your mouth, the weight of that fear – how it’s not strictly describable.’

The Online Edition

Best Book of 1970: Moominvalley in November

Aleksi Pöyry

‘This is a book I always return to for its melancholy tone, warm humour and psychological insight.’

Granta 137

The Cult of the Hindu Cowboy

Snigdha Poonam

‘The Hindu cowboy accords to the cow the holiest status in his imagination: of mother. It is his duty to protect her honour; it is his privilege to kill for her.’

Granta 137

Introduction

Sigrid Rausing

‘What future youth movement might capture them, those international participants in virtual hunts?’

Granta 137

Peace Shall Destroy Many

Miriam Toews

‘It creates deep-seated wells of rage that find no release.’ Miriam Toews on pacifism in Mennonite communities.

Granta 137

The Interpreters: Among the Brahmins of Benares

Aatish Taseer

‘That first sight of the city curled around the river goes through me like the breath of something old and known and familiar.’ Aatish Taseer revisits Varanasi.

Granta 137

Your Youth

Kelly Schirmann

‘I have never been in love / with so many variants of nothing.’

Granta 137

My Angel

Adam Thorpe

‘I am full of unreal desires and worthless imaginings.’