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Fen by Daisy Johnson

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English folklore and a contemporary eye, sexual honesty and combustible invention - in Fen, these elements have come together to create a singular, startling piece of modern fiction.


Fen by Daisy Johnson

Daisy Johnson's Fen is a liminal land. Real people live their lives here. They wrestle with familiar instincts, with sex and desire, with everyday routine. But the wild is always close at hand, ready to erupt. This is a place where animals and people commingle and fuse, where curious metamorphoses take place, where myth and dark magic still linger. So here a teenager may starve herself into the shape of an eel. A house might fall in love with a girl. A woman might give birth to a - well what?


'There is big, dangerous vitality herein - this book marks the emergence of a great, stomping, wall-knocking talent.' -- Kevin Barry

'Within these magical, ingenious stories lies all of the angst, horror and beauty of adolescence. A brilliant achievement.' -- Evie Wyld

'Reading the stories brought the sense of being trapped in a room slowly, but very surely, filling up with water. You think: this can't be happening. Meanwhile, hold your breath against the certainty it surely is.' -- Cynan Jones, author of The Dig

'I've been working my way slowly through Fen and not wanting it to end - Daisy marries realism to the uncanny so well that the strangest turnings ring as truth. The echoes between stories give the collection a wonderfully satisfying cohesion, so that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. I cannot wait to see what she does next.' -- Sara Taylor, author of The Shore

About the Author

Daisy Johnson was born in 1990 and currently lives in Oxford. Her short fiction has appeared in The Boston Review and The Warwick Review, among others. In 2014, she was the recipient of the 2014 AM Heath prize.

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Book Info

Publication date

30th November 1999


Daisy Johnson

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Literary Fiction
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