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Matilda Bathurst chooses the best recent short story collections

Tales of the desperate and surreal include hungry comic-book characters who resort to eating their own speech bubbles

22 August 2015

9:00 AM

22 August 2015

9:00 AM

The Dog Jack Livings

Penguin, pp.240, £8.99, ISBN: 9780241970126

Lucky Alan and Other Stories Jonathan Lethem

Cape, pp.176, £16.99, ISBN: 9780224101479

Jellyfish Janice Galloway

Freight Books, pp.240, £12.99, ISBN: 9781908754950

‘I just wanted the damn story to ask the right questions,’ sighs a disaffected journalist in Jack Livings’s debut collection of short stories, The Dog. Two other new short story collections, Lucky Alan by Jonathan Lethem and Jellyfish by Janice Galloway, are less interested in asking the right questions than in the opportunities for missing the point.

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'The Dog', £8.54, 'Lucky Alan and Other Stories', £14.99 and 'Jellyfish', £11.69 are available from the Spectator Bookshop, Tel: 08430 600033

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