Granta | The Magazine of New Writing

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John Barth

The word odometer dates from 1791, but mileage indicators didn’t appear as standard equipment on...

A Battle

Patrick Süskind

‘Early one August evening, when most people had already left the park, two men sat confronting one another across a chessboard.’

A Beheading

Mohsin Hamid

‘The words are just dribbling out of my mouth. I can’t stop them. They’re like tears.’

A Child’s Book of Death and Dying

Abraham Verghese

‘A fine morning mist had rolled down over Addis Ababa from the Entoto mountains, leaving a sheen on the lawn between the apartment buildings'.

A Conversation Piece

George Steiner

‘No. Listen to me. God's confidence in Abraham was not total. Let me hammer out my meaning.’

A Conversation with the Head of Orpheus

Russell Hoban

‘Far, far away in the night are live human beings whose breathing can be heard as they speak, and they're looking at their illuminated dials as I look at mine at this end of the darkness that curves with the night miles to the heave and swell of the ocean dawn.’

A Day in the Life in El Salvador

Manlio Argueta

‘I have not failed you, José. I understand that you were saying goodbye when you opened your eye, and that, besides greeting me, you were expressing your pride in me, seeing me standing with my arm around the shoulders of your granddaughter.’

A Discourse on the Elephant

Richard Rayner

‘This is not the story of my life, at least not the story of all of it, but it is the story of my father.’

A Fan Letter

Stewart O’Nan

‘Before I begin I'd like to say that I'll try to remember everything as best I can, though sometimes I know it won't be right.’

A Few Words on the Life Cycle of Frogs

Patricio Pron

‘I wasn’t going to abandon the dream of literature, I was going to keep dreaming.’

A Good Man is Hard to Find

Duncan McLean

‘I thought I heard the woman next door crying’

A House in the Country

Romesh Gunesekera

‘The nights had always been noisy: frogs, drums, bottles, dogs barking at the moon.’

A Lovely and Terrible Thing

Chris Womersley

‘For a moment I could not speak. I looked off into the bleak distance, then at this man, and there was something about the sad shake of his head and the way his hair flapped about on his scalp that filled me with unreasonable warmth.’

A Mason’s Hand | New Voices

Ali Akbar Natiq

‘Haji sahib, these kids are beyond me. I can’t teach them any more. Please make some other arrangement.’

A New World

V. S. Pritchett

‘What was this new world? It was their love for each other.’

A Queer Streak Part One: Anonymous Letters

Alice Munro

‘She would never know why she had done it. She was sleepless and strung-up and her better judgement had deserted her.’

A Queer Streak Part Two: Possession

Alice Munro

‘He thinks he remembers Violet coming for supper, as she sometimes did, bringing with her a pudding which she set outside in the snow, to keep it cool.’

A Question of Geography

John Berger & Nella Bielski

‘If I'm not transferred to the mines, I'll hold out, and you must go on thinking of me as dead: you will be closer, my heart, to the reality.’

A Religious Conversation

Orhan Pamuk

‘"Hello, sir. Do you recognize me?" "No, I'm afraid I don't."’

A Scream of Toys

Alan Sillitoe

‘Edie looked a long time at blue sky in a pool of water after rain before dipping her finger down for a taste.’

A Sentence of Love

Assia Djebar

‘I met Annie for the first time in 1995, in Algiers. A friend of my sister's, she came from Paris and stayed with me for one night.’

A Short History of Coronation Ale

Graham Swift

‘Rest assured, it was no ordinary ale that they drank by the Ouse while in Westminster crowds thronged.’

A Soap Opera From Hell

Clive Sinclair

‘It comes as no surprise when an ophthalmist informs him that the tears he does produce–the consequence of various allergies–are deficient, poor-quality facsimiles of the real thing.’

A Tale of Two Martyrs

Tahar Ben Jelloun

‘You spend your life swallowing insults.’

A Temporary Stay

Emilio Fraia

‘There doesn’t seem to be any cause and effect.’

A Wedding

Anita Brookner

‘The bride and groom were there all the time, in the centre, as they should be. A good-looking couple. But lifeless, figures from stock.’

About the Eel

Graham Swift

‘We have not yet come to the most remarkable episode in this quasi-mythological quest for the genesis of the eel.’

Accident

Etgar Keret

’Thirty years I’m a cabbie,’ the small guy sitting behind the wheel tells me, ’thirty years and not one accident.’

Adults

Claire Messud

‘Those summer evenings were all alike.’

After Caravaggio’s Sacrifice of Isaac

Rachel Cusk

‘It was right after he was born that I started looking at paintings.’

After Effects

Oliverio Coelho

‘Iván tried not to keep still.’

After Helena

Andrés Neuman

‘What can damage us more? The blunt honesty of hatred, or the thwarted objective of reconciliation?’

After Hours

A. M. Homes

‘They have created stage sets, backdrops, candy-coloured scenarios, Kodacolor bright landscapes onto which you can project your fantasies.’

After That, We Are Ignorant

Bilal Tanweer

‘He used to see things in his dreams and made them his policies. Yup, Americans loved his dreams because he was screwing the Soviets and Comrades in them.’

Agamemnon’s Truth

Javier Cercas

‘My name is Javier Cercas, just like you.’

Agnes of Iowa

Lorrie Moore

‘Her mother had given her the name Agnes, believing that a good-looking woman was even more striking when her name was a homely one.’