Ireland has a rich tradition of short stories and our contemporary writers are continuing that tradition. Try some of the classics, like William Trevor or Bernard MacLaverty, or experiment with newer writers - Jan Carson, Sophia Hillan, Eddie Cunningham, Jamie Guiney and Kelly Creighton. Ask us for recommendations !
Short stories set in contemporary Northern Ireland, full of humour and wry realism. A beautiful illustrated cover courtesy of Irish publisher Arlen House. Rosemary is one of Northern Ireland's foremost short story writers - a genre that is brilliant executed by our Irish writers.
Do email us if you would like more information about Rosemary or any of our other excellent NI short story writers, Jamie Guiney, Peter Hollywood, Louise Kennedy, Lucy Caldwell, Jan Carson, Kelly Creighton - to name just a few!
The perfect gift this Christmas season: a generous selection of some of the greatest festive stories of all time.
This is a collection of the most magical, moving, chilling and surprising Christmas stories from around the world, taking us from frozen Nordic woods to glittering Paris, a New York speakeasy to an English country house, bustling Lagos to midnight mass in Rio, and even outer space. Here are classic tales from writers including Truman Capote, Shirley Jackson, Dylan Thomas, Saki and Chekhov, as well as little-known treasures such as Italo Calvino's wry sideways look at Christmas consumerism, Wolfdietrich Schnurre's story of festive ingenuity in Berlin, Selma Lagerlof's enchanted forest in Sweden, and Irene Nemerovsky's dark family portrait. Featuring Santas, ghosts, trolls, unexpected guests, curmudgeons and miracles, here is Christmas as imagined by some of the greatest short story writers of all time.
A great collection of 'caught at the moment ' short stories from Northern Irish Bernie McGill ( author of The Watch House, The Butterfly Cabinet, Sleepwalkers)
These stories have a delicacy, an emotional connection and a sense of what's between the lines, in a range of voices and characters. Very enjoyable.
An all-new collection of winter-themed mysteries from the master of the genre.
There's a chill in the air and the days are growing shorter... It's the perfect time to curl up in front of a crackling fireplace with this winter-themed collection from legendary mystery writer Agatha Christie.
But beware of deadly snowdrifts and dangerous gifts, poisoned meals and mysterious guests. This compendium of short stories, some featuring beloved detectives Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, is an essential omnibus for Christie fans and the perfect gift for mystery lovers. INCLUDES THE STORIES:The Chocolate BoxA Christmas TragedyThe Coming of Mr QuinThe Mystery of the Baghdad ChestThe Clergyman's DaughterThe Plymouth ExpressProblem at Pollensa BaySanctuaryThe Mystery of Hunter's LodgeThe World's EndThe Manhood of Edward RobinsonChristmas Adventure
From the acclaimed author of My Name is Leon***'
Stories of everyday lives that will resonate and move you utterly'
As she walks out of her marriage, a woman remembers the day her husband rescued a boy from drowning. A blind man on his wedding day celebrates the pursuit of love. And a young man leaves prison with only one desire - to see his son again.
Kit de Waal's characters light up the page in vivid stories of thwarted desire, love and loss. With power and precision, humanity and insight, Supporting Cast captures the extraordinary moments in our ordinary lives, and the darkness and the joy of the everyday.
$13.00In her singular, electrifying style, K-Ming Chang peels back questions of body, power and identity, and the relationships of Asian American women, with vivid imagination. A stream of women adjust to American life by sneaking kisses from women at temple and buying tubs of vanilla ice cream to prepare for citizenship tests.
Ghost-cousins cross space, seas and skies to haunt their living cousin. Two girls explore each other's bodies for the first time in the belly of a plastic shark. Brimming with moths and mothers, nine-headed birds and storm-chasers, these queer, fabulist tales delve viscerally into myth and memory, corporeality and ghostliness, beauty and the grotesque.
$16.00A new collection of stories from the cult author of Terminal Boredom. Izumi Suzuki had ideas about doing things differently, ideas that paid little attention to the laws of physics, or the laws of the land. In this new collection, her skewed imagination distorts and enhances some of the classic concepts of science fiction and fantasy.
A philandering husband receives a bestial punishment from a wife with her own secrets to keep; a music lover finds herself in a timeline both familiar and as wrong as can be; a misfit band of space pirates discover a mysterious baby among the stars; Emma, the Bovary-like character from one of Suzuki's stories in Terminal Boredom, lands herself in a bizarre romantic pickle. Wryly anarchic and deeply imaginative, Suzuki was a writer like no other. These eleven stories offer readers the opportunity to delve deeper in this singular writer's work.
'Gripping... a writer in full possession of her powers' Financial Times'
In ten dazzling stories, Saba Sams dives into the world of girlhood and immerses us in its contradictions and complexities: growing up too quickly, yet not quickly enough; taking possession of what one can, while being taken possession of; succumbing to societal pressure but also orchestrating that pressure. These young women are feral yet attentive, fierce yet vulnerable, exploited yet exploitative. Threading between clubs at closing time, pub toilets, drenched music festivals and beach holidays, these unforgettable short stories deftly chart the treacherous terrain of growing up - of intense friendships, of ambivalent mothers, of uneasily blended families, and of learning to truly live in your own body.
With striking wit, originality and tenderness, Send Nudes celebrates the small victories in a world that tries to claim each young woman as its own. _____________________________________________________________________'A roiling, raw, gut-punch of a debut collection, best read in one sitting ... I sat motionless for about half an hour after reading them; I can't wait to see what she writes next' PANDORA SYKES'A seriously impressive debut.
A Finalist for the National Book Award for Translated Literature, 2022
The collection that established Samanta Schweblin at the forefront of her literary generation, available in English for the first time. The seven houses in these seven stories are strange. A person is missing, or a truth, or memory; some rooms are enticing, some unmoored, others empty. But in Samanta Schweblin's tense, visionary tales, something always creeps back in: a ghost, a fight, trespassers, a list of things to do before you die, or the fallibility of parents.
Seven Empty Houses offers an entry point into a fiercely original mind, and a slingshot into Schweblin's destabilizing, exhilarating literary world. In each story, the twists and turns will unnerve and surprise: Schweblin never takes the expected path and instead digs under the skin and reveals uncomfortable truths about our sense of home, of belonging, and of the fragility of our connections with others. This is a masterwork from one of our most brilliant modern writers.
Unsettling, unpredictable, and brilliant' Roddy Doyle
In sumptuous and evocative prose, Sheila Armstrong writes stories that are unnerving and unsettling. Stories which make you go, wait, wait, what was that? ' Claire Fuller, author of Unsettled GroundOn a boat offshore, a fisherman guts a mackerel as he anxiously awaits a midnight rendezvous. Villagers, one by one, disappear into a sinkhole beneath a yew tree.
A nameless girl is taped, bound and put on display in a countryside market. A man returning home following the death of his mother finds something disturbing among her personal effects. A dazzling and disquieting collection of stories, how to gut a fish places the bizarre beside the everyday and then elegantly and expertly blurs the lines.
An exciting new Irish writer whose sharp and lyrical prose unsettles and astounds in equal measure, Sheila Armstrong's exquisitely provocative stories carve their way into your mind and take hold. 'Dark, devilishly well written and full of atmosphere, How to Gut a Fish is one of the most original and affecting short story collections I've read in years' Jan Carson, author of The Fire Starters.
£9.99 paperback available from mid February 2023.
$13.00Writers & Lovers established Lily King as one of our most beloved authors of contemporary fiction. Now, for the first time ever, King collects ten of her finest short stories, opening fresh realms of discovery for avid and new readers alike.
Told in the intimate voices of unique and endearing characters of all ages, these tales explore desire and heartache, loss and discovery, moments of jolting violence and the inexorable tug toward love at all costs. A bookseller's unspoken love for his employee rises to the surface, a neglected teenage boy finds much-needed nurturing from an unlikely pair of college students hired to housesit, a girl's loss of innocence at the hands of her employer's son becomes a catalyst for strength and confidence, and a proud nonagenarian rages helplessly in his granddaughter's hospital room. Romantic, hopeful, brutally raw, and unsparingly honest, some even slipping into the surreal, these stories are, above all, about King's enduring subject of love.
Lily King's literary mastery, her spare and stunning prose, and her gift for creating lasting and treasured characters is on full display in this curated selection of short fiction. Five Tuesdays in Winter showcases an exhilarating new form for this extraordinarily gifted author writing at the height of her career. 'Lily King is one of our great literary treasures' - Madeline Miller, author of Circe
$20.00I don't recall if I saw my first gunman in my childhood nightmares or on my childhood streets. There were plenty in both and they looked very much like each other. So begins Reggie Chamberlain-King's introduction to The Black Dreams, a thrilling and compelling collection of specially commissioned stories that explore the emotional geography of growing up and living in Northern Ireland.
The fourteen stories gathered here criss-cross coast, border and city as they map a 'strange' territory of in-between states and unstable realities in which understanding is unreliable. Obsessions, death and rebirth, violence, sexuality, retribution and apocalypse are all part of the rich fabric of The Black Dreams. Bringing together some of Northern Ireland's finest writers, along with some of the best new talents, The Black Dreams celebrates and extends the rich tradition of the weird, surreal and dream-like in Northern Irish writing.
It is also a powerful act of imagining and storytelling - a vibrant, vivid and exhilarating exploration of a world we cannot, or choose not, to see. Contributors: Jo Baker, Jan Carson, Reggie Chamberlain-King, Aislinn Clarke, Emma Devlin, Moyra Donaldson, Michelle Gallen, Carlo Gebler, John Patrick Higgins, Ian McDonald, Gerard McKeown, Bernie McGill, Ian Sansom, Sam Thompson
A brilliantly warm, witty and moving portrait of our pandemic lives, told in ten heart-rending short stories. Love and marriage. Children and family. Death and grief.
Life touches everyone the same. But living under lockdown, it changes us alone. In these ten, beautifully moving short stories mostly written over the last year, Booker Prize winner Roddy Doyle paints a collective portrait of our strange times.
A man abroad wanders the stag-and-hen-strewn streets of Newcastle, as news of the virus at home asks him to question his next move. An exhausted nurse struggles to let go, having lost a much-loved patient in isolation. A middle-aged son, barred from his mother's funeral, wakes to an oncoming hangover of regret.
Told with Doyle's signature warmth, wit and extraordinary eye for the richness that underpins the quiet of our lives, Life Without Children cuts to the heart of how we are all navigating loss, loneliness, and the shifting of history underneath our feet.
( image featured is hardback. New Paperback is red cover)
$20.00The extraordinary new story collection from one of Ireland's greatest writers and bestselling author of Midwinter Break. Bernard MacLaverty is a consummately gifted short-story writer and novelist whose work - like that of John McGahern, William Trevor, Edna O'Brien or Colm Toibin - is deceptively simple on the surface, but carries a turbulent undertow. Everywhere, the dark currents of violence, persecution and regret pull at his subject matter: family love, the making of art, Catholicism, the Troubles and, latterly, ageing.
Blank Pages is a collection of twelve extraordinary new stories that show the emotional range of a master. 'Blackthorns', for instance, tells of a poor out-of-work Catholic man who falls gravely ill in the sectarian Northern Ireland of 1942 but is brought back from the brink by an unlikely saviour. The most recently written story here is the harrowing but transcendent 'The End of Days', which imagines the last moments in the life of painter Egon Schiele, watching his wife dying of Spanish flu - the world's worst pandemic, until now.
Much of what MacLaverty writes is an amalgam of sadness and joy, of circumlocution and directness. He never wastes words but neither does he ever forget to make them sing. Each story he writes creates a universe.
'Ireland produces writers the way some countries produce footballers, and the latest is John Patrick McHugh' Sunday Times 'One of the most exciting writers working in Ireland today' SALLY ROONEY, author of Normal People
You had to scrap for love. In this stunning debut short story collection exploring betrayal and longing on an imagined island off the west coast of Ireland, John Patrick McHugh takes us deep into a community of individuals who are lost, yearning, and self-deceiving.
We see two boys set fires while their worlds fall apart, follow a couple driving out to the hills in a last-ditch effort to save their marriage, watch a widow seek a stranger's help to bury her grief, see a horse crash a house party. Whether falling in love or turning on one another the residents here are united by a quest for connection in the treacherous waters of small-town boredom. In stories that are bitterly funny, profoundly moving and crackling with wild energy, McHugh embeds us in the fragile moments on which a life can twist and turn.
Pure Gold heralds the arrival of a thrilling new literary voice.
This collection of eleven stories by one of Ireland's best writers is a compelling exploration of what comes from moving about the place. In these stories, Evelyn Conlon vividly imagines her characters all over the world: Australia, Indonesia, Japan, Italy, Monaco, in a house with two drills of vegetables in Skerries. A couple spend their lives wandering around the equator because of a lie they told during anti-apartheid days; one person holds out in a border-straddling tree; a woman from Hiroshima makes the decision to get pregnant; an Irishwoman attempts to assassinate Mussolini, another fights for women's suffrage in Australia.
Brilliantly written, witty, and full of the sharp observation for which Conlon is well known, Moving About the Place brings together some of the best of her recent work, along with brand-new stories, including a novella, to show how borders, movement and history change and transform people's lives.
'A genuinely exploratory writer ... her work is excitingly original.' The Times'
Hailed among the BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR 2011 by Jeanette Winterson, A.S. Byatt, Patrick Ness and Sebastian Barry to name but a few!
Smith can make anything happen, which is why she is one of our most exciting writers today' Daily Telegraph
There once was a man who, one night between the main course and the sweet at a dinner party, went upstairs and locked himself in one of the bedrooms of the house of the people who were giving the dinner party . . .'As time passes by and the consequences of this stranger's actions ripple outwards, touching the owners, the guests, the neighbours and the whole country, so Ali Smith draws us into a beautiful, strange place where everyone is so much more than they first appear...
A gripping, wonderfully understated book that oozes humanity, emotion and humour.' Guardian
Warm, compassionate and funny, Sweet Home captures life in contemporary East Belfast, in all of its forms. Set in the author's native Belfast, the ten stories in Sweet Home lay bare the heartbreak and quiet tragedies that run under the surface of everyday lives. A lonely woman is fascinated by her niqab-wearing neighbours; a middle-aged teacher becomes obsessed with a young Gaelic football player; and an employer covers for his two employees caught having sex in a public toilet. Wendy Erskine offers perfectly formed, brilliantly observed portraits of people trying to carve out a life for themselves, all the while being buffeted by the loss, grief and regret that come their way.
Winner of the 2020 Butler Literary Award, Shortlisted for the Edge Hill Prize 2019, Shortlisted for the Republic of Consciousness Prize 2019, Longlisted for the Gordon Burn Prize and the Sunday Times Audible Short Story Award 2019'A Book of the Year in the Guardian, The White Review, Observer, New Statesman, TLS.
A City Burning examines power of all types, exploring conflicts between political allegiances; between autonomy and intimacy; emotional display and concealment. The result is a deeply human book full of hauntingly memorable characters and narratives.
They have come to a moment of change, which puts to the proof their beliefs or their idea of themselves. Some of these moments occur in mundane circumstances, others amidst tragedy or drama urban violence, the Covid-19 pandemic, the tipping-point of a marriage. The characters find themselves confirmed or radicalised, and challenge or resist on one or other side of a political division or on the personal front of domestic tyranny. They include a watchful child, a gay priest, an estranged husband, an actress adrift and a young woman catching the tail-end of heartless urban mayhem.
The stories are set in Wales, Italy and Northern Ireland.
The first ever collection of stories from the Man Booker Prize-shortlisted author of Swing Time and White Teeth'
Zadie Smith is the best writer of our generation' Gary Shteyngart'
'Smith is virtuosic, as ever, on family and friendship, and her ability to write about large-scale social injustice without losing her neutral novelist's gaze is breathtaking' Times Literary Supplement on Swing Time
In the summer of 1959, an Antiguan immigrant in north west London lives the last day of his life, unknowingly caught in someone else's story of hate and division, resistance and revolt. A mother looks back on her early forays into matters of the human heart - and other parts of the human body - considering the ways in which desire is always an act of negotiation, destruction, and self-invention.