The Dig | Granta

  • Published: 06/11/2014
  • ISBN: 9781847088802
  • 129x20mm
  • 176 pages

The Dig

Cynan Jones

Deep in rural Wales, a farmer is struggling through lambing season when he becomes aware that his land is being stalked by a badger-baiter who brings with him the stark threat of violence. Built of the interlocking fates of these two solitary men, this is a searing story of isolation and loss, from a writer of uncommon gifts.

A quietly overwhelming masterpiece of love, degeneration and the merciless landscape of grief

Eimear McBride

I treasure Cynan Jones's The Dig for engaging with [a] marginal pastoral tradition, showing the depth of its attachments to nature, and for refusing to treat those attachments in a romantic, nativist way

Helen Macdonald ‘The six books that made me’, Guardian

A powerful book... about violence, loss and the different ways one can be trapped. It is absolutely unflinching in its descriptions of the savagery the badgers face... [yet] the violence is never gratuitous... There is certainly a deliberate gnarled quality to the novel's prose. Its language is slightly askew, forcing the reader to linger... This is a novel with a heft far beyond its size

Evie Wyld, New York Times Book Review

The Author

Cynan Jones was born in 1975 near Aberaeron, Wales. He is the author of five short novels, The Long Dry, Everything I Found on the Beach, Bird, Blood, Snow, The Dig, and Cove. His work is published in over 20 countries and has won several prizes including a Betty Trask Award, the Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Award, the Wales Book of the Year Fiction prize, and the BBC National Short Story Award. He has also written stories for radio and screen, and a collection of tales for children. Other writing has appeared in numerous publications including Granta and the New Yorker. He was elected a Fellow of the RSL in 2019.

More about the author →

From the Same Author

Cynan Jones on

Essays & Memoir | The Online Edition


Cynan Jones

‘A kestrel is not domestic. The one time I tried affection the bird put his beak through my lip.’

Five Things Right Now | The Online Edition

Five Things Right Now: Cynan Jones

Cynan Jones

‘A pair of seagulls. I say a pair. They might just be good friends.’

Fiction | The Online Edition

A Letter From Wales

Cynan Jones

‘Believe me – it will be impossible for you not to wonder – when I vow I am entirely sane.’