A startling collection of stories from a debut British writer.
WINNER OF THE EDGE HILL SHORT STORY PRIZE 2016
SHORTLISTED FOR THE SUNDAY TIMES/PFD YOUNG WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD 2016
'Greengrass is undoubtedly that rare thing, a genuinely new and assured voice in prose. Her work is precise, properly moving, quirky and heartfelt' A. L. Kennedy
The twelve stories in this startling collection range over centuries and across the world.
There are stories about those who are lonely, or estranged, or out of time. There are hauntings, both literal and metaphorical; and acts of cruelty and neglect but also of penance.
Some stories concern themselves with the present, and the mundane circumstances in which people find themselves: a woman who feels stuck in her life imagines herself in different jobs - as a lighthouse keeper in Wales, or as a guard against polar bears in a research station in the Arctic.
Some stories concern themselves with the past: a sixteenth-century alchemist and doctor, whose arrogance blinds him to people's dissatisfaction with their lives until he experiences it himself.
Finally, in the title story, a sailor gives his account - violent, occasionally funny and certainly tragic - of the decline of the Great Auk.
The stories in this impressive and unusual debut collection chronicle the lives of the lonely and estranged . . . a highly original collection from a distinctive new voice in fiction - Independent on Sunday
[An] accomplished debut collection . . . She has a Mantel-esque way with metaphor, in which clarity of the image illuminates plot and theme . . . this talented writer has all the resources to break out of her comfort zone - **** Daily Telegraph
Greengrass is undoubtedly that rare thing, a genuinely new and assured voice in prose. Her work is precise, properly moving, quirky and heartfelt. She explores the rich borderland where science fiction and literary fiction meet. I look forward to anything and everything else she writes. - AL Kennedy
A number of the individual story titles are fantastic, too. I must also mention that this volume has been beautifully produced and is one of the first offerings from JM Originals, a new list by John Murray . . . You'll want to keep an eye out for others in the series - Bookbag
One of the first books to come from the John Murray Originals imprint (the cover is stunning) which I want to read for the title, and title story, alone - Savidge Reads
Greengrass is undoubtedly that rare thing, a genuinely new and assured voice in prose. Her work is precise, properly moving, quirky and heartfelt - AL Kennedy
This brilliant and unusual collection is truly original. - Emerald Street
The stories in Jessie Greengrass' debut work would be auspicious even without its singular title . . . Greengrass's scope is ambitious, and at times self-consciously sedulous, compensated for by admirable technical skill, and an exhilarating sense of the unknown . . . The majority of the collection soars. Greengrass's language can switch from elegant and frosty to richly sensual . . . sheer range and conspicuous talent - Financial Times
Jessie Greengrass was born in 1982. She studied philosophy in Cambridge and London. An Account of the Decline of the Great Auk, According to One Who Saw It won the Edge Hill Short Story Prize and a Somerset Maugham Award, and was shortlisted for the PFD/Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year. Sight is her first novel and was shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction.