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Books Do Furnish a Room

Penelope Lively

‘The shelves say something about the person who has stocked them; they say much.’

Threshold | State of Mind

Barry Lopez

‘What we’re about to see is greater than the thing you’re running from.’

The Peripatetic Penelope Fitzgerald

Lucy Scholes

Lucy Scholes on the highs, lows and package tours of Booker-prize-winning author Penelope Fitzgerald. ‘Fitzgerald’s life can only be attributed to the caprices of fate.’

Speed Dating the Man Booker Longlist | Discoveries

Josie Mitchell

The Man Booker longlist 2017 has been announced. We’ve put together a speed dating session, introducing you to the work of all thirteen novelists.

Dead in Venice

Masahiko Shimada

‘If I wasn’t a fish spawned in the Brenta river, why was I so compelled to keep returning?’ Masahiko Shimada on his many trips to Venice.

People Who Have Met Drake | Discoveries

Josie Mitchell

Discoveries – cool stuff we found online. Featuring Margaret Atwood, Junot Díaz, Rebecca Curtis and more.

Talking Italish

Antonio Melechi

‘For my mother and father, the past and present had both become foreign countries.’

The Myth of Creative Genius

Natasha Pulley

‘There’s a mysticism that surrounds writing fiction.’

Brontez Purnell Is Everything

Michelle Tea

Novelist, zinester, dancer, go-go-boy, punk, filmmaker, actor, performer, Brontez Purnell is everything.

The American Experience in 737 Novels

Susan Straight

A history of American literature in map form.

Amit Chaudhuri | First Sentence

Amit Chaudhuri

‘A scene in which nothing is ostensibly happening will absorb me; so will a paragraph that contains no vital piece of information.’

The Tamarind is Always Sour

Keane Shum

‘By law, the more than one million Rohingya in Myanmar are almost all excluded from Myanmar citizenship, making them the largest stateless group in the world.’

Solar Stasis | Discoveries

Josie Mitchell

A cluster of links from across the world wide web, feat. Anthony Lane, Claudia Rankine, David Grossman and more.

On Jesus’ Son

Eli Goldstone

‘Jesus’ Son is a song, a glorious clear hymn, full of the notes of bad decisions, of rotten fucking luck, of causing real and lasting damage to yourself and to the people around you.’

Remembering Denis Johnson

J. Ryan Stradal

When people ask me what Denis was like, I always think about how he listened far more intently than just about any writer I’d ever met.

Russia on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown

Liza Alexandrova-Zorina

‘The Russian people suffer from a victim complex: they believe that nothing depends on them, and by them nothing can be changed.’

Microtravel: Home and Away

Vahni Capildeo

‘The place I thought I knew best had become unknown territory, by the perhaps not-so-simple process of taking a few steps.’

I Am Lying

Miranda Doyle

‘Findings show that the bigger the brain, the more frequent the deceit.’ Miranda Doyle on why we lie.

Any Idiot Can Write a Book

Nell Stevens

A production company is looking for contestants to participate in a new TV show, modelled on The Apprentice. They are seeking unpublished writers who have completed a novel.

Cyclical Wisdom | Discoveries

Josie Mitchell

A mash-up of Elif Batuman | Oscar Wilde | David Lynch | Marilynn Robinson | Margaret Atwood | and Viet Thanh Nguyen

All That Was Familiar

Abubakar Adam Ibrahim

The story of two women fleeing Boko Haram in north-east Nigeria.

Other-Dimensional Beings | Discoveries

Josie Mitchell

This week’s Discoveries brings you some top-notch urls from around the world wide web.

Between Them

Richard Ford

‘It was my child’s outlook to think most things were right. And yet if life’s eternal drama is of events seeking a more perfect state, their life and mine was not that.’

Introduction

Sigrid Rausing

Sigrid Rausing introduces Granta’s Best of Young American Novelists 3.

Terra Nova

Robert Moor

Robert Moor remembers hitch-hiking across Newfoundland: ‘The way to pronounce Newfoundland, Bill and Sue instructed me, is to remember that it rhymes with understand.’

The Hatchet Job | Discoveries

Josie Mitchell

This week's Discoveries celebrates the brutal literary tradition of the hatchet job.

The Land In Winter

Madeleine Thien

Madeleine Thien on the occupation of Palestine.

Things I Didn’t Know

Wiam El-Tamami

‘When people would ask me what I was doing in Istanbul, I would explain that I’m a freelance writer and translator, and I move a lot. I move intuitively, I would say: places call to me.’

I come from a place on your bucket list

Deepti Kapoor

Deepti Kapoor on travel, authenticity and the peculiarity of being Indian in Uganda.

Elif Batuman | Is Travel Writing Dead?

Elif Batuman

‘The power imbalance built into travel writing is just a heightened version of an imbalance that’s there in all writing.’

Same-same but different | Discoveries

Ka Bradley

This week’s Discoveries features translation in all its many articulations.

Yet Trouble Came

Phillip Lewis

Phillip Lewis on writing emotional autobiography. ‘A sincere observation followed by a sincere utterance is the most powerful and effective form of communication.’

The Bonds of Trauma

Daniel Magariel

‘An often-unacknowledged truth about families that deal with addiction is that the bonds of trauma can be as challenging to quit as the habit itself.’

Morwari Zafar | Is Travel Writing Dead?

Morwari Zafar

‘What satellites and the internet don’t do is give a voice to experience. And that’s where travel writing endures.’

The Back Way and the Way Back

Will Boast

Despite emerging from two decades of misrule under Yahya Jammeh, many Gambians still aspire to go ‘the back way’ into Europe.