It was a family tradition, to greet each new calamity with a party. It might seem strange, but it was actually rather joyous; the absurdity of cheering and clinking glasses when something had gone terribly, terribly wrong. My earliest memory was of celebrating some failure of my father’s with canapes and champagne. So when the
Tag: short fiction review
Christopher Stanley is an author who when he releases a book I go straight out and purchase it, such is the quality that he brings to the table with ever outing. There are only three other authors that I do that with; Stephen King, Chuck Palahniuk, Donald Ray Pollock, Kealan Patrick Burke, Gemma Amor and
A fly landed on the bottom of the saucepan that was resting on the drainer. Which was allowed. Because it was on the bottom of the saucepan, not inside it, unlike the fly that had greeted Cora when she’d opened the butter dish on Tuesday morning. It had been dead on its back, right in
Reality, and Other Stories is a gathering of deliciously chilling entertainments – stories to be read as the evenings draw in and the days are haunted by all the ghastly schlock, uncanny technologies and absurd horrors of modern life. The above is the blurb that accompanied John Lanchester’s latest offering, a short story collection that
I use collections pretty much as a shopping list. And there is nothing I love more than the feeling of discovering what a new author (to me anyway) has to offer, and I find that through these collections I’ve found a great many writers that have now become a staples of my reading and bookshelves.
Night falls heavy behind drawn yellow curtains, as the silent face watches me grieve. My father used to keep a small transistor radio in the kitchen, a Zenith from sometime in the 1960’s with brushed silver dials and buttons. As a child it was already an antique, the sound it created hollow and tinny, like
You’ve just walked in the door, stripped off your Lycra and turned on the shower when you see it: the toe. Not an ordinary toe; not a toe attached to a foot attached to a leg attached to a body. No. This is a severed toe. Freshly severed. It’s upright and propped against the wall.
The first time I read Burnt Tongues was back in April 2014 – at the time I had only really started dipping my feet into the world of transgressive fiction and I have to admit that I came away from that encounter a little scarred and a little let down, I found the stories shocking
A writer who has shaped (and is unarguably still shaping) the face of modern American literature, Richard Ford’s latest collection of short stories is another triumph, showcasing his recognisable wit and affinity for analysing the average American, with clever, subtle humour. As is the case with Ford’s writing, there’s lots to unpack in these short
You show me the mouldy, rotting body of yet another Siamese Fighting Fish so we stop drinking and head off. In the pet shop we stop to talk to the yellow and blue macaw which answers to the name Pauline Conway. ‘What a disgrace. It’s too big for that cage. We’d do a better job,’