This Isn’t The Sort of Thing That Happens To Someone Like You

Jon McGregor

This Isn’t The Sort of Thing That Happens To Someone Like You

In this collection the vast skies and silts of the Lincolnshire fens are sensually evoked and the austerely beautiful landscape exposes the most intimate details of his characters' lives; their secrets, their crimes and desires. 4.0 out of 5 based on 11 reviews
This Isn’t The Sort of Thing That Happens To Someone Like You

Omniscore:

Classification Fiction
Genre Short Stories
Format Hardcover
Pages 272
RRP £14.99
Date of Publication February 2012
ISBN 978-1408809266
Publisher Bloomsbury
 

In this collection the vast skies and silts of the Lincolnshire fens are sensually evoked and the austerely beautiful landscape exposes the most intimate details of his characters' lives; their secrets, their crimes and desires.

Read a story from the collection on the New Statesman website.

Even the Dogs by Jon McGregor

Reviews

The Guardian

Maggie O'Farrell

Read Jon McGregor's new book. Its verve, its inventiveness, its sheer quiet audacity will reassure you that the short story is alive, well and reaching new heights.

03/02/2012

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The Independent on Sunday

Leyla Sanai

Jon McGregor's writing combines dreamy, ethereal poetry with a northern sensibility unafraid to confront devastating truths. This is his first volume of short stories, and each plunges the reader into highly charged situations that ensnare our attention. A false intimacy is created between us and the often unnamed characters: we suddenly care about these people.

19/02/2012

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The Financial Times

James Urquhart

High quality global journalism requires investment. Please share this article with others using the link below, do not cut & paste the article. See our Ts&Cs and Copyright Policy for more detail. Email ftsales.support@ft.com to buy additional rights. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/c7131cb2-859c-11e2-bed4-00144feabdc0.html#ixzz2NtJQBWBD McGregor’s stories are subtle, powerful and quietly dramatic. He builds tension in a few deft paragraphs and while his pared down prose style recalls Raymond Carver, the emotional complexities mapped out here beneath the oppressively wide fenland sky also bring to mind Adam Thorpe’s Ulverton or Graham Swift’s Waterland.

15/01/2013

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The Daily Telegraph

Catherine Taylor

The pivotal moments appear almost insignificant, but brim with drama and import – the dangerous listlessness of a couple of baleful ex-cons living in a caravan on a wealthy eccentric’s estate; a harassed vicar’s wife’s angry, helpless acceptance of a mysterious uninvited guest ... The prose is picked clean, pellucid. Even a young woman’s near-death experience, when a sugar beet smashes through her car windscreen, holds a purposeful, uncanny beauty entirely of that moment

30/01/2012

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The Literary Review

Thomas Marks

McGregor’s prose is as sparse as the countryside it has alighted on, with barely a simile or metaphor in sight. But he finds a bruised lyricism in his care for the short sentence, for the small word, for repetition.

01/02/2012

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The Financial Times

Linda Grant

For the most part, something is going to happen or has already taken place: we are in the present, intensely felt. Stories stop abruptly or peter out before we understand what is going on. Facts are in short supply. The cumulative effect is a kind of novel about a place and its inhabitants, told through fragments and recurring nameless characters. Nothing happens, as Amazon reviewers are wont to write, apart from in every sentence.

03/02/2012

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The Independent

Arifa Akbar

McGregor's writing is so distinctive that it becomes hard to compare to another. There is a precision and a poetry to his prose. Life, inner and outer, is so meticulously dissected that events appear to happen in slow motion. There is, in these brooding stories, that same sense of impending cataclysm that gave his debut, if nobody speaks of remarkable things, its intrigue

27/01/2012

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The Daily Mail

Stephanie Cross

McGregor’s direct, unadorned style couldn’t be more suited to this comfortless landscape, a place of cooling towers, drainage ditches and endless skies … Throughout, omissions and ellipses set the mind racing like a treacherous tide, rushing in to fill the gaps. Not a book for bedtime, then. But very, very good indeed.

26/01/2012

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The Observer

Alex Preston

The most obvious contemporary influence on these stories is the American writer Lydia Davis. It's not just the remarkable ventriloquism and genre-hopping playfulness; McGregor has clearly thought hard about the order of the stories in this collection and, as is the case in Davis's work, the narrative tempo of the individual stories feeds through into the rhythm of the book as a whole ... Sharp, dark and hugely entertaining, this collection establishes McGregor as one of the most exciting voices in short fiction. The fenland landscape may be flat and dreary; these stories are anything but.

22/01/2012

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The Times

Chris Power

[Has] a facility for conversational prose that can wrap itself around a reader’s throat …

28/01/2012

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The Sunday Times

David Mills

The range of approach in the 30 stories is wide: some are only a sentence or two long; one incorporates a “field verse” poem; another is an artful list of place names. All are subtitled with the name of a town or village from the flatter counties of eastern England. Yet, while very little might happen in the narratives, their telling is packed with such incidental detail that deeper, more complex lives are suggestively put before us.

29/01/2011

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