Today is one of a few posts we have featuring upcoming and recent releases from small presses. If you're part of our monthly book club (come join! Everyone's welcome!) you might have already read The Ghost who Bled by Gregory Norminton which is my favourite short story collection in a very long time. If not then today's post will alert you to some really great stuff coming your way!
Comma Press was set up in 2003 as an artists group and focuses on short stories and anthologies across a range of genres and with various interesting focuses. Along with The Ghost who Bled I also own Protest which is an anthology of stories about various protests throughout history, each with an attached essay from an expert or eyewitness, and Iraq+100, another anthology about Iraq 100 years on from the US invasion. They are a really exciting publisher and are part of the Northern Fiction Alliance, among other things.
An Autumn Preview
Autumn is a great season for snuggling up indoors with a blanket, a cup of tea and a great book. The first book Comma have coming out this autumn is guaranteed to also make you think. Banthology: Stories from Unwanted Nations was announced after Donald Trump's 'Muslim Ban' and is comprised of seven specially commissioned stories from the so-called 'banned nations' of Sudan, Yemen, Somalia, Libya, Iraq, Syria and Iran covering a range of genres. Comma say that it is "a testament to the importance of creative resistance in turbulent times". I don't know about you but I like creative resistance so much I might write a whole separate post about it...
Banthology is published in October.
In our opinion there isn't anyone doing anthologies with a twist quite as well as Comma Press at the moment. Protest, that I mentioned above, is a good example of this, as is Conradology: A Celebration of the Works of Joseph Conrad. This anthology is another example of stories and essays put together, and includes works written in English and Polish (translated into English - Conrad was British-Polish) which reinvent, critique and respond to his work. Exploring the themes that ran through Conrad's own books this anthology promises to be something a bit special.
Comma Press also publish short story collections by single authors. We read one as our August choice for #ninjabookclub and another really intriguing collection is coming out in November. Letters Home is Martyn Bedford's first short story collection. It brings together short stories covering "everything from family feuds over long-passed industrial disputes, through to futuristic visions of police detection" and as the best collections do, also offers a way to think about the world as it is now.
You Should Come with Me Now is M. John Harrison's first collection in 15 years and explores new versions of British landscapes. As with so much that Comma publishes it sounds extremely timely and bills itself as "weird stories for weird times". Yes please.
The final book featured here is The Book of Tbilisi, a collection of previously untranslated stories by Georgian writers set in Tbilisi, the capital city of Georgia. As so often with Comma Press it's a collection designed to introduce UK readers to a country and culture they are likely to be unfamiliar with and it sounds fantastic.
It's looking like a fantastic autumn of reading over at Comma!
Announcing another raffle prize...Comma Press have donated their Reading the City 6 book bundle to our fundraising raffle. Don't forget to get some raffle tickets & help us raise money for Give a Book!
Catch up on the Indie Extravaganza here and please use #ninjabirthdayraffle to spread the word!