Nicholas Royle (one of our writers)
Short stories
June 2016

About the publication

The nation's favourite annual guide to the short story, now in its sixth year. Best British Short Stories invites you to judge a book by its cover - or more accurately, by its title. This new series aims to reprint the best short stories published in the previous calendar year by British writers, whether based in the UK or elsewhere. The editor's brief is wide ranging, covering anthologies, collections, magazines, newspapers and web sites, looking for the best of the bunch to reprint all in one volume. This new anthology includes stories by: Claire-Louise Bennett, Neil Campbell, Crista Ermiya, Stuart Evers, Trevor Fevin, David Gaffney, Janice Galloway, Jessie Greengrass, Kate Hendry, Thomas McMullan, Graham Mort, Ian Parkinson, Tony Peake, Alex Preston, Leone Ross, John Saul, Colette Sensier, Robert Sheppard, DJ Taylor, Greg Thorpe and Mark Valentine.


If the latest iteration of Salt's Best British Short Stories collection is anything to go by then the genre remains in safe hands. Whether safety is what we ought to demand of our writers, particularly in this traditionally experimental genre, is another question entirely. This is not to say that the collection is devoid of innovation: Ian Parkinson's "A Belgian Story" is at once an allegory for contemporary debates surrounding immigration and the paranoid account of a deluded individual, and its success lies in the ambiguous tension between the two. John Saul's "Song of the River" exhibits a Joycean fascination with the intersection between stories and songs.

Lawrence Foley, Times Literary Supplement