Our Lady of Mercy
‘I was engaged in a battle of politeness, those kindly – but ferocious – skirmishes that are so common in our country.’
Acts of Infidelity
‘Anticipation made it difficult for Ester to swallow.’ Translated from the Swedish by Saskia Vogel.
Man of Principle
A novelette by Roy Chicky Arad, written after one of the wars of Israel in Gaza. Translated from the Hebrew by Maayan Eitan and Oded Even Or.
Slip of a Fish
‘Charlie’s swimming. Six strokes then she turns to breathe, six more and all the way to the end of the length. She’s a swimmer, Charlie. She’s a bit of a fish, a slip of a fish.’
Shirley from a Small Place
‘The highs and lows of fame, have been far better and far worse than both mother and daughter could have hoped for. Shirley is only twenty-seven.’
Jenny Bennett-Tuionetoa’s ‘Matalasi’ is the Pacific winner of the 2018 Commonwealth Short Story Prize.
Cowboys and Angels
‘I had me a cowboy once on a hot steam Friday night.’ New fiction from Chelsea Bieker.
A coming-of-age story about an awkward roommate on Roosevelt Island, ordering bisexual porn tapes from catalogues and writing summaries of The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet for a living.
The Swallow’s Nest
Meet Gore Vidal in this excerpt from John Boyne’s novel A Ladder to the Sky.
I’ve Seen the Future, Baby; It Is Murder
‘It was not very comfortable, but the appeal of it was that we did not like each other.’
‘In terms of aspiration, leaving London was the new moving to London. You slogged it out, made a name for yourself, then decamped to the sticks and devoted yourself to trashing city life on Twitter while roaming the fields in pursuit of your tweedy ideals.’
Susan and Miffy
‘The lust of an old man is disgusting but the lust of an old woman is worse. Everyone knows that.’
‘I like to think the ones who are worst at coloring will remember me the longest.’
‘Social services gave Mum a whole list of conditions she had to adhere to. She wasn’t allowed to be animals anymore, under any circumstances, or they would take Ghillie away from her.’
Mall Camp, Seasons 1 & 2
‘He was thirteen years old or just about and newly an only child. Newly not a child.’
An extract from Kudos, the final novel in Rachel Cusk’s trilogy, following Outline and Transit.
The Divine Pregnancy in a Twelve-Year-Old Woman
Sagnik Datta’s ‘The Divine Pregnancy in a Twelve-Year-Old Woman’ is the Asian regional winner of the 2018 Commonwealth Short Story Prize.
Carys Davies' new novel is a mesmerising depiction of the uncharted wilderness beyond the Mississippi River
‘I Am Going to Speak to You about Anxiety’
‘Her mother was still sitting on the sofa, stroking the left armrest while she talked.’
The Taxidermy Museum
‘Even dying is an attempt to approach life. That’s how I perceive taxidermy.’
Yokosuka blue line
‘I close my eyes and circle my finger around the map. Wherever my finger lands.’
The Break-up of the Ice
‘Deeper in the port, a woman was speaking, a knitting process in which letters were picked and drawn out of loops of sound, detaching in part and rejoining, like a sort of memory.’ New fiction by Lucie Elven
Lake Like a Mirror
‘If she’d swerved any harder, she would have crashed right into the lake.’ New fiction by Ho Sok Fong, translated from the Chinese by Natascha Bruce.
Now, Now, Louison
Jean Frémon on the artist Louise Bourgeois and her fascination with spiders. Translated from the French by Cole Swensen.
‘They tell me you write about exile, about lives adrift, about trees whose roots are buried thousands of kilometres away, he said in his harsh accent, his hoarseness aggravated by the static on the telephone line.’
‘This writer does not write among these men who are here because they have lost the plot, lost the thread of their own lives.’
Subha Prasad Sanyal’s translation of ‘After Half-Time’ by Shamik Ghosh is the winner of Harvill Secker’s Young Translators’ Prize 2018.
‘All through winter and another summer we wait, but time passes more quickly now that we have a purpose. I feel it flowing.’
‘On the rampage, he truly did become a devil; it was impossible to restrain him.’ Translated from the Russian by Robert & Elizabeth Chandler.
The Seafood Buffet
‘Things that felt like cold stones began to be piled around her ankles. Lemon halves.’