MELISSA FU finds writing inspiration within the pages of CG Menon's debut collection, Subjunctive Moods: 'This many-layered story is heady with a sense of old ghosts clutching old grudges and snickering at new mischief. I was struck by how different the settings and tones were in the two pieces, but the writing was equally captivating in both…'
MIKE SMITH examines the authorial commentary of Rudyard Kipling’s story ‘The Eye of Allah’: 'Set in the monastery of St Illod it tells of the artist John of Burgos, who early on in the story, travels abroad to find ‘new devils’ to draw, to buy pigment, and to visit his ‘Infidel’ and pregnant unofficial wife…'
NICOLE MANSOUR responds to the rhythm of William Gass's short stories: 'In truth, this musical heartbeat underpins much notable creative prose. And perhaps one of the finest modern examples of it can be found in American writer William Gass’s seminal collection of short stories, In the Heart of the Heart of the Country…'
SHORT STORY ADAPTATIONS: this month, Dr. CHRIS MACHELL takes us into alien territory with Denis Villeneuve's film adaptation of Ted Chiang's 'Story of Your Life': 'Villeneuve restructures the themes of Chiang's text to explore the ways that the visual language of cinema represents time as an experiential phenomenon shaped by memory and emotion…'
‘The machinery of grace is always simple.’ Michael Donaghy, in his poem ‘Machines’, writes this of the blind leaps that love requires of us – faith’s gung-ho disregard for gravity. ‘So much is chance…' PENNY BOXALL finds the emotional landscape of Alice Munro's short story 'Amundsen' is a delicate balancing act.
More than twenty years after his first encounter with 'Kleist in Thun', BEN WINCH continues to be dazzled: 'each time I gaze into that mirror—a mirror-within-mirror, and therefore, if the angle’s just right, a particularly dazzling one—I see a different face. '
TRACY FELLS explores the emotional resonance of three very different short stories: 'When you read a short story that thwacks an emotional punch or haunts your daydreams then you have to talk about it. I read at least one short story daily, so what prompts me to talk about specific pieces…?'
NAOMI FOYLE looks at Arab Sci-Fi in the pages of 'Iraq +100: Stories From a Century After the Invasion': 'a landmark anthology of short stories in a scintillating variety of genres and tones, a book of riveting ulterior visions...'