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Oxford Poets 2007
Edited by David Constantine and Bernard O'Donoghue
Damian Walford Davies
The fifth OxfordPoets anthology continues the aim stated in the first of the series, 'a desire to represent the best' of the new work associated with the OxfordPoets imprint. This latest collection is as varied and thought-provoking as the earlier books. Here are poets from a diversity of backgrounds and traditions, spanning ages, experiences and purposes.
What they share is a commitment to the truth of their experience and an excitement with the possibilities of poetry. They often write at the point where the private and public worlds collide, but such serious concerns never preclude wit, imagination, an inventive flair for language. New writers, and writers who are already becoming recognised, are making compelling new poetry.
Awards won by David Constantine Short-listed, 2010 Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award (The Shieling) Winner, 2013 Frank O'Connor International Short Story Prize
(Tea at the Midland) Winner, 2010 BBC National Short Story Award
(Tea at the Midland)
Praise for David Constantine 'I started reading these stories quietly, and then became obsessed, read them all fast, and started re-reading them again and again. They are gripping tales, but what is startling is the quality of the writing. Every sentence is both unpredictable and exactly what it should be. Reading them is a series of short shocks of (agreeably envious) pleasure...'
AS Byatt, Book of the Week, The Guardian 'Flawless and unsettling.'
Boyd Tonkin, Books of the Year 2005, The Independent
'Touched at times with humour and infused with compassion, these complex, nuanced stories speak repeatedly of lives lived in some form of exile, yet manage to keep in play the possibility that exile is not, contrary to appearances, our true condition.'
New Welsh Review 'A. S. Byatt has described reading a previous collection of Constantine's short fiction as akin to experiencing ''a series of short shocks of (agreeably envious) pleasure''. Tea at the Midland shows the author to be on equally sparkling form again.'
'The excellence of the collection is fractal: the whole book is excellent, and every story is excellent, and every paragraph is excellent, and every sentence is excellent. And, unlike some literary fiction, it's effortless to read.'
The Independent on Sunday
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