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Rules for Visiting

Jessica Francis Kane

‘It wasn’t until the end of dinner, when my aunt started clearing and my grandmother demanded another bottle of wine, that I began to understand.’

Evensong

Todd McEwen

‘Characteristically my wife refused to be drawn into the situation while I became obsessed with it.’

Agnes of Iowa

Lorrie Moore

‘Through college she had been a feminist – more or less. She shaved her legs, but just not often enough, she liked to say.’

Nadine at Forty

Hilary Mantel

‘Each day we re-enact, on ourselves, what was done to us.’

Always the Same Snow and Always the Same Uncle

Herta Müller

‘Who knows: what I write I must eat, what I don’t write – eats me.’

A Mother’s Dilemma

Victor Lodato

‘I can hear the girl scratching a pencil inside a notebook. I don’t like it. I’ve asked her not to write about me.’

Vintage 1954

Antoine Laurain

An extract from Vintage 1954 by Antoine Laurain, translated from the French by Emily Boyce and Jane Aitken.

At the Edge of Night

Friedo Lampe

An excerpt from Friedo Lampe’s At the Edge of Night, translated from the German by Simon Beattie.

Picking Up Nathan from the Airport

Benjamin Markovits

‘When shit like this happens, people don’t walk out on fifteen-year marriages.’

Objects in Mirror

Maxim Osipov

‘He runs through the events of the day in his mind. Fairly frightening, really: the sudden request for his file, the question about the government. And the silence.’

If You Start Breathing

Thea Lim

‘Sharing her pain with other people meant that her pain belonged to her less, Joanne belonged to her less.’

Portion of Jam

Mazen Maarouf

‘My father no longer goes to the hospital to work, because you don’t find nurses in wheelchairs working in hospitals.’

The Heavens

Sandra Newman

‘It was one of those parties where no one knew the hostess.’

No Machine Could Do It

Eugene Lim

‘In the future we have to be as interesting to the AI as our pets are to us.’

The Woman Dies

Aoko Matsuda

‘The woman dies. She dies to provide a plot twist. She dies to develop the narrative. She dies for cathartic effect. She dies because no one could think of what else to do with her.’ Aoko Matsuda, translated from the Japanese by Polly Barton.

Ghost Wall

Sarah Moss

An excerpt from Sarah Moss's Ghost Wall, published by Granta Books.

Hoarfrost

John Patrick McHugh

Can infidelity make up for infidelity? New fiction from John Patrick McHugh.

Parfait

Hiromi Kawakami

‘He comes all the way here after he died and the two of you are making small talk?’ New fiction by Hiromi Kawakami, translated from the Japanese by Allison Markin Powell

The Restaurant of Many Orders

Kenji Miyazawa

‘Two young gentlemen dressed just like British military men, with gleaming guns on their shoulders and two dogs like great white bears at their heels, were walking in the mountains where the leaves rustled dry underfoot.’

How Much Heart

Mieko Kawakami

A triptych of flash fiction by Mieko Kawakami, translated from the Japanese by David Boyd.

Jennifer

Amitava Kumar

‘I was overcome by a feeling that took root then and has never left me, the feeling that in this land that was someone else’s country, I did not have a place to stand.’

The Swimmer

Tom Lee

‘I wondered what an onlooker might make of this man, this scene.’

The Dive

Samsun Knight

‘What’s wrong is that she cannot breathe.’ Samsun Knight’s ‘The Dive’ is the winner of the 2018 Disquiet Literary Prize

Gooseen

Nuala O’Connor

Nuala O’Connor’s short story about Nora Barnacle, and her first meetings with James Joyce.

Fathers and Sons

Benjamin Markovits

‘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.’

Brother in Ice

Alicia Kopf

‘My brother is a man trapped in ice. He looks at us through it; he is there and he is not there.’

A Time for Everything

Karl Ove Knausgaard

‘It can almost seem as if God was genuinely concerned about mankind.’ Translated by James Anderson.

The Wanderers

Guadalupe Nettel

'Childhood felt like a waiting room, a transitory phase between birth and the life we wanted.'

American Journal

Christine Montalbetti

‘All those appetizing vessels exposed and available, O how delightfully vulnerable they are, it brings a tear to the eye.’

Rainbow People

Nicholas Mosley

‘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.’

The Astronaut

Christina Wood Martinez

‘I made tea while the astronaut sat at our kitchen table and gazed out the window.’

The Rat Snipers

Ben Lasman

‘When they stand on their hind legs, arms up, wrists limp, rats can take on a beguiling sort of personhood.’

Stratford Marsh

Esther Kinsky

‘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

Andrée A. Michaud

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.

Cold Mountain

Andrée A. Michaud

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.

Lagomorph

Alexander MacLeod

‘It is important to establish, before this begins, that I never thought of myself as an animal person.’