This Living and Immortal Thing by Austin Duffy

The somewhat neo-Yeatsian, almost mawkish-sounding title chosen for Austin Duffy's first novel is deceptively triumphalist. While the novel toys with the idea of the soul’s...

An interview with Emily Berry

Emily Berry's 2013 debut Dear Boy established her as a poet of 'sinful inventiveness' and 'startling gifts'. As the editor of Salt Publishing's Best British...

We Wait for Poets by Manash Bhattacharjee

prophets have retired so do not wait for yours to come to you ~ Ashraf Fayadh (translated by Mona Kareem) In our country, a prince, Dara Shikoh, had...

Public Library by Ali Smith

It seems somehow wrong that I now ‘own’ my copy of Public Library, Ali Smith’s fifth collection of short stories. For Smith, books are...

‘hypnotic delight’: Macbeth at the Young Vic

Three lunatic dollies jerk and prance in dub-step; they suck their fingers (or are they Raspberry Mivvis?), they entice and threaten, they are Sirens...

The Bonniest Companie by Kathleen Jamie

Walking and climbing in a landscape of clifftops, glens, summits and strands, the speaker in Kathleen Jamie’s subtle and assured seventh collection journeys through...

Cockfosters by Helen Simpson

If you dare to enter the murky world of short story criticism, you are likely to find yourself swamped by metaphors—florid, emotive, and frequently...

The History of Modern France by Jonathan Fenby

Do we really need another history of France when Amazon already carries so many?  This one is on the two centuries since Waterloo, making...

Talking Dead by Neil Rollinson

There is a danger when a poet sets out to record the ‘numinous in the everyday’, as Neil Rollinson’s most recent collection Talking Dead...

white – a project by Edmund de Waal

white - a project by Edmund de Waal at The Royal Academy of Arts until 3 January 2016 White has obsessed Edmund de Waal since he made his...

Counting by Ralf Webb

April doesn't rain. We have spent days watching the truant magpies comb our cat-eyed neighbour’s lawn for bottle caps and burnt-out tin foil. The cloying sun has not coaxed...

Physical by Andrew McMillan

Andrew McMillan’s debut collection Physical opens with an epitaph taken from one of the often overlooked novels of Hilda Doolittle, better known as H.D.,...

Ritual Landscapes by Francis Pryor

Many academic phrases, like much academic writing, are too awkward, verbose and cumbersome to find their way into common usage. Indeed, the jargon of...

The Rain Horse by Ted Hughes

Ted Hughes The Rain Horse As the young man came over the hill the first thin blowing of rain met him. He turned his coat-collar up...

The Rat by Hannah Lowe

The landlady watches herself in the living room mirror, phone held to her ear. In the blurred morning light her face looks young again,...

What I’m Reading – Thomas Morris

We asked The Stinging Fly editor and short story writer Thomas Morris about the things he's reading, watching and listening to right now. Reading Dorthe Nors’s Karate Chop (some...

Real Life by Suzannah Evans

The producers decided things were getting slow so I caught you with Arabella at the charity regatta, delivered a flute of strawberry champagne to your blazer, a...

Next Boat from Douala by William Boyd

From The London Magazine Stories 11, 1979 Then the brothel was raided. Christ, he’d only gone down to Spinoza’s to confront Patience with her handiwork. She hadn’t...

His Bottom Lip by Rachel Long

Clitoral, like finding a small, hidden part of myself in someone else. Nerve-wet, fleshy - for a white guy, and stained between life-lines with red wine gone black. Only this...

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

Lauded as a subversive masterpiece, pegged as a favourite to win The Man Booker Prize and one of the best-selling novels of 2015, A Little...

Towpath by Neil Burns

I The Lagan - a muddy silt river - Barrel of roll-tide, ribs of clean branches Poke up water jutting. On the towpath I glean a warm wet...

What Eliot Means to Me

To mark the fiftieth anniversary of T. S. Eliot's death, the great and the good of the literary world have rolled out tributes, readings,...

We Don’t Know What We’re Doing

Editor of The Stinging Fly, one of Ireland's top literary magazines, Thomas Morris is no stranger to reading and writing short fiction. In the final countdown...

Happiness by Jack Underwood

‘Sometimes your sadness is a yacht’ is the title of the fourth poem in Jack Underwood’s recently published collection Happiness. Highlighting early on in...

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