From the author of the much-loved Old Filth trilogy, Jane Gardam’s short stories are as witty, scintillating, and emotionally acute as the greatest of her novels. This definitive collection, which brings together the best short works from throughout her remarkable career, showcases Gardam’s versatility and imagination as well as her richly developed sense of observation. Moving seamlessly from the macabre to the nostalgic and the wickedly comic, these stories are as eloquent as ever while also highlighting Gardam’s inimitable grasp of dialogue and subtly piercing prose. Featuring a wide cast of characters in all stages of life, Gardam expertly probes secret desires, hidden motives, and unresolved pasts. Some of these stories end with twists worthy of Roald Dahl at his most ironic, while others channel Alice Munro’s gentle melancholy. These reissued masterpieces are a welcome addition to Gardam’s already impressive oeuvre.
Jane Gardam has been twice awarded the Whitbread Prize and was also a Booker prize finalist. She is winner of the David Higham Prize, the Royal Society for Literature’s Winifred Holtby Prize, the Katherine Mansfield Prize, and the Silver Pen Award from PEN. Her novels include God on the Rocks, shortlisted for the Booker Prize; Old Filth, finalist for the Orange Prize; The Man in the Wooden Hat, finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; and Last Friends, finalist for the Folio Award. She lives in the south of England near the sea. In 1999 Jane Gardam was awarded the Heywood Hill Literary Prize in recognition of a distinguished literary career.