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Capitán

Magalí Etchebarne

‘A man, my mother once told me, is a small animal that looks immense.’

Thick Legs

Natalia Borges Polesso

‘Was soccer a sign? I don’t think so, nearly all the girls had boyfriends, except for Greice and Kelli, and I didn’t have one because I was a puta, as they used to say, I hooked up with everybody.’

Wherever Mister Jensen Went

Reyah Martin

Reyah Martin’s ‘Wherever Mister Jensen Went’ is the 2020 Commonwealth Short Story Prize regional winner from Canada and Europe.

Mafootoo

Brian S. Heap

‘She looks at her husband of fifty years, trussed up like a bewildered Christmas tree, all trailing streamers and twinkling lights, undecided about whether he is quick or dead.’

When A Woman Renounces Motherhood

Innocent Chizaram Ilo

Innocent Chizaram Ilo’s ‘When a Woman Renounces Motherhood’ is the 2020 Commonwealth Writers Short Story Prize regional winner from Africa.

Fracture

Andrés Neuman

‘Sometimes, in the midst of one of our arguments, he would say to me sadly, I understand you more if I understand less.’

Hold Your Fire

Chloe Wilson

‘While waiting for his faecal transplant, my husband wasn’t as fun as he used to be.’

The Station

J. Robert Lennon

‘You’re gonna want to go down the other side of the mountain and check out the Facility. Don’t do it.’

Hair

Mahreen Sohail

‘The first person he tells is his girlfriend of one year. I’m going to donate my hair to my mother, he says, and is worried to see tears rise in her eyes.’

Learning to Sing

Lydia Davis

‘You discover during your very first lessons that the problem of singing better involves overcoming many other problems you had not ever imagined.’

Diminishing Returns

Fatin Abbas

‘Alex had been sent to this remote district between north and south Sudan to update maps. It was an information-gathering project run by an American NGO based in the capital, Khartoum, nine hundred kilometers to the north.’

As if in Prayer

Steven Heighton

‘Many of the life vests were useless fakes, nylon shells that the human traffickers had stuffed with bubble wrap, boxboard, sawdust or rags.’

Fable

Kathryn Scanlan

‘The girl’s curiosity often led her into troublesome situations, but she considered it part of the pact her soul had made in order to gain entrance to the world, and did not worry much over what befell her.’

New fiction from Kathryn Scanlan.

The Smart House of Mrs O

Lincoln Michel

‘I looked around at my apartment, wondering if there was anything gazing back.’

New fiction from Lincoln Michel.