A woman and man, parted a quarter of a century, reunite in a bar in New Orleans as the St Patrick’s Day parade goes by. A divorced suburban dad helps his daughter pick out a card for her friend who’s moving away. A group of friends in late middle age, all once promising, reunite for dinner when one of their number loses her husband, but the gathering splinters when bitter revelations about their shared past emerge. Two teenage boys sit in a drive-in, the air thick with the scent of gin and popcorn and longing. A visionary collection of luminous landscapes, of great moments in small lives, of the people we carry with us long after they are gone, ‘Sorry for Your Trouble’ takes disappointment, ageing, grief, love and marriage and silhouettes them against the heady backdrop of Irish America in the past and present.
Here a series of luminous vignettes describe the childhood of Argentina’s rediscovered modernist writer. Self-contained, interconnected fragments begin with her family’s departure to Mendoza in 1910 and end with their return to Buenos Aires and the death of her father in 1915. Lange’s notes tell intimate, half-understood stories from the seemingly peaceful realm of childhood, a realm inhabited by an eccentric narrator searching for clues on womanhood and her own identity.
In these twelve quietly dazzling, carefully crafted stories, Billy O’Callaghan explores the resilience of the human heart and its ability to keep beating even in the wake of grief, trauma and lost love. Spanning a century and two continents – from the muddy fields of Ireland to a hotel room in Paris, a dingy bar in Segovia to an aeroplane bound for Taipei – ‘The Boatman’ follows an unforgettable cast of characters. Three gunshots on the Irish border define the course of a young man’s life; a writer clings fast to a star-crossed affair with a woman who has never been fully in his reach; a fisherman accustomed to hard labour rolls up his sleeves to dig a grave for his child; a pair of newly-weds embark on their first adventure, living wild on the deserted Beginish Island.
A masterpiece of contemporary Gothic from the internationally acclaimed author of Things We Lost in the Fire’Mariana Enriquez is a mesmerizing writer who demands to be read. Like Bola�o, she is interested in matters of life and death, and her fiction hits with the full force of a train’ Dave EggersWelcome to Buenos Aires, a city thrumming with murderous intentions and morbid desires, where missing children come back from the dead and unearthed bones carry terrible curses. These brilliant, unsettling tales of revenge, witchcraft, fetishes, disappearances and urban madness spill over with women and girls whose dark inclinations will lead them over the edge.
Over a decade ago, Groff moved to her adopted home state of Florida. The stories in this collection span characters, towns, decades, even centuries, but Florida – its landscape, climate, history and state of mind – becomes their gravitational centre. Storms, snakes and sinkholes lurk at the edge of everyday life, but the greater threats and mysteries are of a human, emotional and psychological nature.
In 1964, two years after the critically lauded release of his debut novel ‘A Different Drummer’, William Melvin Kelley published his first collection of short stories, ‘Dancers on the Shore’. Reissued in a new edition by riverrun, these seventeen stories expand Kelley’s literary world, showcase his limitless imagination and spotlight his inimitable talent.
The truth was that if a woman bit a man in an office environment, there would be a strong assumption that the man had done something to deserve it. From the creator of ‘Cat Person’ – the first short story to go viral – comes ‘Cat Person and Other Stories’, a compulsive collection about sex, dating and modern life. These are stories of women’s lives now. They also happen to be horror stories. In some, women endure the horror. In others, they inflict it. Here are women at work, at home, on dates, at the doctor’s, with their families and with their friends. Here are women grappling with desire, punishment, guilt and anger. These are stories that make you feel fascinated but repelled, scared but delighted, revolted but aroused.
Wilde’s short fiction includes such masterpieces as ‘The Happy Prince’, ‘The Selfish Giant’, ‘Lord Arthur Savile’s Crime’ and ‘The Canterville Ghost’, as well as the daring narrative experiments of ‘The Portrait of Mr. W. H.’ and ‘Poems in Prose’. This edition shows how they continue to the enthral and challenge the reader.
Roald Dahl was a master of macabre comedy, as well as being one of the greatest children’s writers of the 20th century. This collection brings together all of his short stories, published in chronological order.
FICTIONS is perhaps the single most mysterious and extraordinary collection of short stories written this century. Influenced by writers as disparate as Lewis Carroll, Stevenson and Cervantes, Borges is nethertheless a complete original who can turn dry logical puzzles in to enchanting fables.
From the extraordinary mind of debut writer Ben Pester comes a book of stories in which the everyday – work, parents, friends – is not quite what it should be. Taken together, it forms a collection of things we are doing right now, in this lost and terrifying world we are gamely attempting to inhabit. Things like worshipping an imaginary being while trying to be productive; or slowly dying and having nothing to say about it except how tiring it was building the kitchen extension; or having hot martinis with the ambassador in a hotel that ought not to be there. Unsettling, original and occasionally monstrous, these are stories that light the contours of the ordinary world with a shimmering unreality.
A debut collection of stories that brings together over 15 years of work, Benjamin Myers lays bare the male psyche in all its fragility, complexity and failure, its hubris and forbidden tenderness. Farmers, fairground workers and wandering pilgrims, gruesome gamekeepers, bare-knuckle boxers and ex-cons with secret passions, the men that populate these unsettling, wild and wistful stories form a multi-faceted, era-spanning portrait of just what it means to be a man.
An immeasurably influential female voice in post-war Japanese literature, Kono writes with a strange and disorienting beauty: her tales are marked by disquieting scenes, her characters all teetering on the brink of self-destruction. In the famous title story, the protagonist loathes young girls but compulsively buys expensive clothes for little boys so that she can watch them dress and undress. Taeko Kono’s detached gaze at these events is transfixing: What are we hunting for? And why? Kono rarely gives the reader straightforward answers, rather reflecting, subverting and examining their expectations, both of what women are capable of, and of the narrative form itself.
Spare, taut and told with flashes of pitch-black humour, the short stories of Norwegian master Kjell Askildsen capture all the strangeness of modern existence. In this selection of tales, spanning the whole of his brilliant career, unnerving encounters occur, lonely individuals try to connect, families and relationships are fractured, and we are confronted by the fragility and absurdity of life.