Worlds From the Word's End Book Cover
Joanna Walsh

Worlds From the Word’s End

This collection cements Joanna Walsh’s reputation as one of the sharpest writers of this century. Wearing her learning lightly, Walsh’s stories make us see the world afresh while showing us she has read the world. In ‘Like a Fish Needs a . . .’ – perhaps the funniest, most freewheeling story ever written about cycling (and Freud and and and . . .) you read shenanigans worthy of Flann O’Brien. Meanwhile, in ‘Worlds from the Word’s End’, Walsh conjures up a country in which words themselves fall out of fashion – something that will never happen wherever Walsh is read.

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Paperback: £8.99
EBook: £5.00

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  • Read a wonderful interview with Joanna Walsh in the Paris Review.
Print status: Available
Author: Joanna Walsh
Original language: English
Format: B-format paperback
Publication date: 7 September 2017
ISBN: 9781911508106
Ebook ISBN: 9781911508113
Availability: World
Number of pages: 128

Reviews

Joanna Kavenna
The Guardian

‘Reality is comically unreliable in Walsh’s stories . . . [she] toys with notions of realism versus fantasy and autobiography versus fiction. She exposes, and revels in, the absurdity of these boundaries, their indistinctness. Her clever, self-parodying stories capture the existential disarrangement of the writer, but also the existential disarrangement of anyone who finds real life strange and, at times, quite unreal.’

Eithne Farry
The Daily Mail

‘Joanna Walsh’s stories are playful and perplexing, delighting in wordplay and sly little puns.’

Andrew Gallix
The Irish Times

‘In Worlds From the Word’s End . . . Eve rolls back Adam’s enterprise of linguistic imperialism. There is a great deal of wordplay, but it is never gratuitous . . . Puns burrow rabbit-holes into the unconscious of language, the text seems to become self-generative.’

Rosie Šnajdr
The Times Literary Supplement

‘Walsh explores the uneasy coexistence of manifest and implied meaning . . . Even in the title lurks the danger of failed communication, with “word” and “world” being so visually similar that the unwary reader is liable to skate over the fault, falling into an auto-corrective trap that masks the dangerous truth of the matter.’

Jude Cook
The Spectator

‘The teasing title of Joanna Walsh’s new collection, Worlds From the Word’s End, prepares the reader for the dexterous and subversive linguistic games within . . . What’s not said says everything. Ludic, contrarian, wry, sometimes savage, these associative vignettes stimulate and inspire.’


Kirkus Reviews, starred review

‘Unsparingly observant and disconcertingly sharp . . . an eerily matter-of-fact chronicle of our own impending doom.’

Hernán Díaz
Publishers Weekly, Favorite Books of 2017

Worlds from the Word’s End puts narrative conventions and linguistic codes under great stress, and we finish the book feeling both have cracked here and there. We also feel, strangely, that Walsh’s private language has somehow become ours, as if we were suddenly fluent in a tongue we didn’t even know existed.’

Yuri Herrera

‘Joanna Walsh is clever, funny and merciless. She abducts people from their apparently normal lives and confronts them with the fact that dystopia is not a place in the future but a room in their own house.’

Sara Baume

‘Terrifyingly perceptive, subversively hilarious – these stories are part Daniil Kharms, part-Lydia Davis – while also managing to be singularly Joanna Walsh; how her writing always manages to make everything else I read (and write) seem specious and frivolous.’

Dubravka Ugrešić, author of Baba Yaga Laid an Egg

Worlds from the Word’s End is an anti-mainstream collection. Joanna Walsh’s thick, blurred and claustrophobic worlds deal with deconstruction, estrangement, silence and the disappearance of common language. This is unconventional writing that is going to enchant unconventional readers.’