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A Clean Marriage

Sayaka Murata

‘Frequency of sex since marriage: zero.’ Sayaka Murata on a sexless marriage and the ‘Clean Breeder’ technique for pleasureless reproduction.

Bezoar

Guadalupe Nettel

‘This was the morning I discovered the anatomy of a hair.’ New fiction by Guadalupe Nettel, translated from the Spanish by Rahul Bery.

Eight Trains

Alberto Olmos

‘To go is always to go somewhere; returning, you return to nowhere. That’s the way it is.’

Deng’s Dogs

Santiago Roncagliolo

‘My earliest memory of Peru is a newspaper photograph from 1980 of dead dogs hanging from lamp posts in downtown Lima.’

The Count

Leandro Sarmatz

‘There was a touch of magic in surviving all that.’

Filling Up With Sugar

Yuten Sawanishi

‘The vagina was the first part of her mother’s body that turned to sugar.’

From the Past Comes the Storms

Andrés Felipe Solano

‘During the hottest months, the thermometer settles in at 100 degrees like a nonagenarian in a rocker – no one can make it move.’

Teenager

Wislawa Szymborska

‘I know much more — / but nothing for sure.’

To Zagreb

Yoko Tawada

‘You didn’t know where you wanted to end up, had never considered how much time you had left.’

Returning to the Hague

Georgi Tenev

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

The Hotel Capital

Olga Tokarczuk

‘At the same time I take off my exotic language, my strange name, my sense of humour, my face lines, my taste for food not appreciated here, my memory of small events—and I stand naked in this pink and white uniform as if emerging from the sea mist.’

Preserves for Life

Olga Tokarczuk

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

A question of identity

Dubravka Ugrešić

‘One of the first things a child learns is the sentiment: My country is… And so begins the homeland briefing that lasts from the cradle to the grave.’

Frogs

Mo Yan

‘Once the preposterous reality set in, we were overcome by sadness.’