Marina Warner
First published: UK: Salt 2015

A long-awaited new collection of Marina Warner's short stories. Like her award-winning novels, Marina Warner's stories conjure up mysteries and wonders in a physical world, treading a delicate, magical line between the natural and the supernatural, between openness and fear.

Fly Away Home included in the longlist for Edge Hill Short Story Prize 2016, more information can be found here.




'In keeping with her academic interests, Warner's short fiction is a salmagundi of exotic settings, odd characters and lofty references. '
- Suzi Feay published in The Guardian, 08th October 2015 . The review can be read here and a scan of the newspaper can be found here.

With their unique blend of ancient myth and contemporary concerns, Warner's stories are often dark, always gripping, with unexpected flashes of humour and clashes of the real and the supernatural. The legendary Mélusine is transformed into an iPhone-wielding, sassy mermaid in a parable on desire and identity. When the relationship between a young dancer and her maverick patron takes a sinister turn, the girl escapes into an alternative world through the chinoiserie pattern on her curtains. Questions of gender and feminism, never far from the surface, are explored in a fresh manner. Warner's writing is at its strongest when it eschews abstraction in favour of the physical – descriptions of human bodies, shimmering underwater creatures, miniature charms with talismanic powers. These are darkly glittering fairytales for our times.
- The Lady 16th October 2015

'Dame Marina Warner's non-fiction is deeply concerned with myths, legends and fairytales. In this collection of magical haunting short stories, ordinary situations are infused with strangeness, and the nursery-rhyme title suggests a common theme of loss and longing.'
- Kate Saunders - The Sunday Times Book Review, 17th October 2015

'The always excellent Marina Warner ranges through eras, from art history to myth, and from fiction to non-fiction, to produce a collection of mostly modern-set stories where central characters are searching for something. Loss or lack results in desire, and it's a different kind of desire that marks every one of the storytellers here.
- Rosemary Goring in The Herald Scotland on 4th October 2015.

'The lingua franca of yearning and inquiry - Marina Warner'
- Teodor Reljic , August 2015 here.

'Marina Warner's soaring new story collection Fly Away Home echoes with the author's signature concerns about life's mysteries, wonders and perplexities through myth, history and the present. '
- Mark Renolds, Bookanista, October 2015, can be read here.

'Playful tales of love, jealousy and revenge in a classic contemporary style make up this new collection of stories from the feminist writer, historian and Dame, in which her ongoing interst in mythology, fairytales, nursery rhymes and the like is deeply evident. May contain mermaids.
- Diva Magazine, October 2015

'...The range and variety of the stories is quite breathtaking; Warner seems capable of turning her pen to any kind of story and narrator, from an ageing drag queen to a 13th century anchorite. Many of the stories comfortably straddle the divide between fantasy and reality, bring the unusual into the everyday in a way that's totally convincing, and every one packs a punch of some kind. '
Kaggsy's Bookish Ramblings here

'Marina Warner, distinguished scholar of fairytale and myth, is on familiar territory in her third book of short stories. As in her earlier collections, many of the pieces here transpose folk-tale tropes to the present day.'

- Imogen West-Knights in The Financial Time, 4th December 2015, the review can be read here.



'Marina Warner is our doyenne of fairy stories.' —The Guardian

'Warner's short stories, like those of AS Byatt, occupy a rich and delicate terrain between the fairytale and the real, the academic and the observed. Murderers I Have Known contains nine stories .... spun in a glittering web that traps ideas on innocence and evil in the physical world for our inspection. Flesh is manipulated, deceived, tortured and massacred, yet the intellectual poise of Warner's prose makes it not only bearable but highly enjoyable.' —Amanda Craig

'JG Ballard maintains that there is no such thing as a perfect novel, but that short stories can, occasionally, achieve perfectioin. Evidence that he is right is provided by Marina Warner's scintillating new short-story collection Murderers I Have Known in which she, too, displays elegant modern humour shot through with a sexiness not perhaps to be expected from a writer better known for non-fiction works on myth, magic, symbolism and fairytales.' —Michael Thompson-Noel

'When it comes to the territory between commentator and storyteller, Warner is a pretty fluid shapeshifter herself. The stories in Murderers I Have Known, unremittingly contemporary in their settings and subjects, are a kind of warning about the importance of shapeshifting between selves, times, genders, art-forms, material and spiritual worlds. There is a danger, Warner suggests, right now at what she calls "the degenerate moment of the century", of losing this ease of movement altogether. Not that this is a grim read; on the contrary, it is a lightfooted and often funny collection.' —Ali Smith





© Marina Warner 2011 - Contact