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Preserves for Life

Olga Tokarczuk

‘He came upon one under the kitchen sink labelled ‘Shoestrings in vinegar, 2004’, and that should have alarmed him.’

The Infamous Bengal Ming

Rajesh Parameswaran

‘Humans are so unpredictable.’

An Occupation

Adam Stumacher

‘All those years of manipulating the tuning crank have given him the patience to settle in for these more involved jobs, and patience is perhaps the most important quality in a human shield.’

The Death of His Excellency, The Ex-Minister

Nawal El Saadawi

‘A minister like myself had to be vigilant, both in body and mind, in order to retrieve correct facts from incorrect information.’

The Burden of Light

Jessica Thummel

‘Jelly sits on the toilet, folded over, staring at his feet still inches from the floor.’

Cupcake

Yana Punkina

‘His voice had long since lost all superfluous timbral embellishments, he was left with only the raw thread of screeching.’

Returning to the Hague

Georgi Tenev

‘‘Shall I tell you, son,’ I ask him, ‘exactly what I’m guilty of?’’

Suddenly

Victoria Redel

‘A month after turning forty-five, every last egg in her body is a Rockette doing the can-can.’

Night Thoughts

Helen Simpson

‘Don’t be such a MasculiNazi.’

The Sex Lives of African Girls

Taiye Selasi

‘She has the most genuine intentions of any woman out there.’

In Shinjuku

Yang Sok-il

‘I found myself sitting on a bench in Shinjuku Central Park, dazed like a junkie, when the wind plastered a sports tabloid to my legs and an advertisement jumped out at me‘

James

Madeleine Thien

‘You can follow the trail but you can’t know in which direction you are headed’

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.’

Cohiba

Lucía Puenzo

‘She would leave everything behind not to lose him.’

Stars and Stripes

Santiago Roncagliolo

‘He chewed on the syllables until they sounded the way they did in movies.’

The Cuervo Brothers

Andrés Felipe Solano

‘I was Mister Average, right on the borderline.’

Olingiris

Samanta Schweblin

‘Sometimes she lied. She didn’t do it maliciously; she did it to pass the time.’

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 Religious Conversation

Orhan Pamuk

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

The Surgery of Last Resort

Daniel Smith

’Early one morning in the fall of 1999, Steven R., a forty-seven-year-old man with fair skin and grey hair, was in the front yard of his home in suburban Nebraska, picking up leaves‘.

Put Not Thy Trust In Chariots

Jonathan Tel

'David had nothing against Arabs personally.This despite the fact he was religious (he wore a blue-and-white kippa which had been knitted by his wife, Devorah, as an engagement present.'

Athena Sees Good Things for You

Patrick Ryan

‘Dear X1, the first document began, On X2, as X3 moves into X4, I want you to turn X5 years into golden wealth.’

Domp-Domp

Ben Ratliff

‘There’s Bo Diddley. Big hips, pointy shoes, glasses. A gap between his teeth, and a bow tie, in 1965.’

Chasing Cars

Dave Reidy

‘I open the chair and angle it toward the shop. Then I sit and wait.’

Beginning, End | New Voices

Jessica Soffer

‘I walked behind you. You led the rallies. I lost my mother. You rubbed my back.’

American Subsidiary

William Pierce

‘He was typing up another proposal for robots that would replace human workers in an engine factory.’

The Law of Diminishing Returns

Dale Peck

‘Love is like trash: it's not something you hoard, it's merely something you don't waste, like heat, or water, or paper’.

At The Villa Moro

Paul Theroux

‘This is my only story. Now that I am sixty I can tell it’.

Destiny

Tim Parks

‘Destiny: there are those who still believe this word has meaning’.

Sandpiper

Ahdaf Soueif

‘Outside, there is a path. A path of beaten white stone bordered by a white wall–low, but not low enough for me to see over it from here'.

The Man in The Van

Lucretia Stewart

‘On Friday 20 March 1998 at ten-thirty in the morning I was lying in the bath, washing my hair’.

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.’

Honolulu Hotel Stories

Paul Theroux

’The Christmas carols in Waikiki were being sung in Japanese‘.

Our Nicky’s Heart

Graham Swift

‘Frank Randall had three sons: Michael, Eddy and Mark. That was fine by him‘.

Lessons

Justin Torres

‘We were six snatching hands, six stomping feet; we were brothers, boys, three little kings locked in a feud for more.’

Phantom Pain

Lydia Peelle

‘Something’s out there. Something has shown up in the woods of Highland City.’