‘The Map of Bihar and Other Stories’

Published by Circaidy Gregory Press, 15th June 2019, with endorsements by writer Farrukh Dhondy and Cathy Galvin, writer and founder of the Sunday Times Short Story Award and The Word Factory. ISBN 978-1-910841-51-8. Available from the publisher:


or from the highly recommended Speedy Hen Books: https://www.speedyhen.com/Product/Janet-H-Swinney/The-Map-of-Bihar–and-other-stories/24392042

or from Amazon.

2 Replies to “‘The Map of Bihar and Other Stories’”

  1. I reviewed The Map of Bihar on Amazon and it was thoroughly entertaining. Here’s what I said: –

    Range, richness, complexity: this is what you get when you engross yourself in Janet Swinney’s anthology of short stories, and very good it is too to have them all in one place.

    From Scotland to India via London, across all ages, classes and races, Swinney deals deftly and with a sharp eye with every human foible and sentiment. There is a denseness, sure-footedness and complexity in the words she uses and the sentences she constructs, and figurative language throughout that makes you sit up and take notice, a fresh way of seeing, hearing, feeling. And yet at the same time there is accessibility and a light touch. These are not stories that you have to plough through with your senses and will-to-understand abnormally alert.

    Swinney draws skilfully on her own varied life experience – particularly her travelling and her intimate knowledge of adult education. She understands people and families, their emotions, their relationships, the cultures and challenges that shape them, and in some cases their wildly unexpected behaviour. She makes the ordinary beguiling and turns it into the extraordinary. Look out for the unbearable tension of the thriller in Drishti and The Work of Lesser Known Artists, and experimentation in Degsie’s All Time Runners, Moving In, and Veil. Look out for the shocking in Washing Machine Wars.

    Don’t just read this anthology to learn and be changed, or for its range, richness and complexity. Read it to be amused and entertained, your journey facilitated by a sly, dry and dark humour, sometimes so subtle that if you blink you miss it.

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