A fading actor with a terminal illness devises a meticulous plan to leave the stage in style...
A pregnant composer contemplates motherhood at the end of civilisation...
Spanning centuries and continents, the stories in this collection amount to a tour de force of literary worldbuilding. From deeply insecure time travellers to medieval mystics and futuristic body modification cults, Norminton’s characters find themselves torn between conflicting impulses – temptation and fortitude, hubris and shame, longing and regret. By turns sad, strange and darkly comic, The Ghost Who Bled reveals a master storyteller of incredible range.
“Witty, intelligent, crunchily written, Norminton’s collection is pure reading pleasure.”
Neel Mukherjee (Booker-shortlisted author of The Lives of Others)
'"All the doors of the imagination are open to Gregory Norminton, the author of micro-fictions and exuberantly long novels; this collection roves magnificently from one side of the world to the other, bringing together people and their predicaments as only its author can. Read it and be transported, too."
Michael Caines (The TLS)
"Gregory Norminton’s tautly written, mordant short stories make the reader sit up and think. Startlingly original imagery and that rare thing, moral and political bite."
Gregory Norminton’s novels include The Ship of Fools (2002), Arts and Wonders (2004), Ghost Portrait (2005) and Serious Things (2008), all published by Sceptre. Other books include The Lost Art of Losing (2012), Thumbnails (2013) and Beacons – stories for our not so distant future(editor, 2013). His stories have appeared on BBC Radio 4, and in Prospect, Resurgence, London Magazine and The Lonely Crowd. He teaches creative writing and English at Manchester Metropolitan University. www.gregorynorminton.co.uk
*An undergraduate gets in way over his head when a class assignment to start a terrorist organization goes viral
*A pregnant 10th-grader struggles with her fetus's insistence that she abort him before both their lives are ruined.
*A man trying to come to terms with the death of a friend becomes obsessed with a funeral home's online braodcasts.
*A mortgage broker gets lost between the Web and the real world in pursuit of a pornography-induced fantasy.
Look Down, This is Where It Must Have Happened is a biting satire of nostalgia, a send-up of the way highschool-era friendships can permanently choke off the possibility of adulthood.
"Witty and wise."—San Francisco Chronicle
"An equally gifted fiction writer and social critic."—Tikkun
"There's tons of talent here."—NOW Magazine
"Hal Niedzviecki is a remarkable writer."—Margot Livesey, author of The House on Fortune Street
Which of these would you wager is pure science fiction, and which currently being developed in the lab? Such is the speed and excitement of today’s bio-medical research – sprinting from the starting gun that was the Human Genome Project – it’s sometimes hard to tell. In a unique collaboration, fourteen short story writers have been invited to explore the increasingly grey area between the fantastical and that which is already within our reach. Closely collaborating with scientists and ethicists working at the forefronts of their respective fields, each writer has been tasked with predicting some of the potential ‘ethical side-effects’ of this ground-breaking work. Not all progress, after all, is progressive. And dark forces are afoot that threaten to hi-jack what many declared would be ‘the century of biology’.
'Fascinating reading.' - Financial Times
'An exhilarating read.' - The Short Review
Toby Litt's Bio-Punk story 'Call it ''The Bug'' Because I Have No Time to Think of a Better Title' short-listed for the 2013 Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award.
After the sickness known as the Doom destroyed civilization, magick has become commonplace, and Fallon Swift has spent her young years learning its ways. Fallon cannot live in peace until she frees those who have been preyed upon by the government or the fanatical Purity Warriors, endlessly hunted or locked up in laboratories, brutalized for years on end. She is determined to save even those who have been complicit with this evil out of fear or weakness—if, indeed, they can be saved.
Strengthened by the bond she shares with her fellow warrior, Duncan, Fallon has already succeeded in rescuing countless shifters and elves and ordinary humans. Now she must help them heal—and rediscover the light and faith within themselves. For although from the time of her birth, she has been The One, she is still only one. And as she faces down an old nemesis, sets her sights on the enemy’s stronghold, and pursues her destiny—to finally restore the mystical shield that once protected them all—she will need an army behind her...
The sickness came on suddenly, and spread quickly. The fear spread even faster. Within weeks, everything people counted on began to fail them. The electrical grid sputtered; law and government collapsed—and more than half of the world’s population was decimated.
Where there had been order, there was now chaos. And as the power of science and technology receded, magick rose up in its place. Some of it is good, like the witchcraft worked by Lana Bingham, practicing in the loft apartment she shares with her lover, Max. Some of it is unimaginably evil, and it can lurk anywhere, around a corner, in fetid tunnels beneath the river—or in the ones you know and love the most.
As word spreads that neither the immune nor the gifted are safe from the authorities who patrol the ravaged streets, and with nothing left to count on but each other, Lana and Max make their way out of a wrecked New York City. At the same time, other travelers are heading west too, into a new frontier. Chuck, a tech genius trying to hack his way through a world gone offline. Arlys, a journalist who has lost her audience but uses pen and paper to record the truth. Fred, her young colleague, possessed of burgeoning abilities and an optimism that seems out of place in this bleak landscape. And Rachel and Jonah, a resourceful doctor and a paramedic who fend off despair with their determination to keep a young mother and three infants in their care alive.
In a world of survivors where every stranger encountered could be either a savage or a savior, none of them knows exactly where they are heading, or why. But a purpose awaits them that will shape their lives and the lives of all those who remain.
The end has come. The beginning comes next.