Granta Magazine | The Magazine of New Writing

Explore Essays and memoir

A Rationalist in the Jungle

Héctor Abad

‘A pale-faced, near-sighted urbanite like me is nothing less than handicapped in the heart of the jungle.’

First Sentence: Héctor Abad

Héctor Abad

‘When I began to use the testosterone gel I fell in love with the woman who is now my wife.’

But Why Write? The Writer-To-Be

Walter Abish

‘How to explain this resolve to write, this firm unwavering intent to become a writer on the part of someone who may not even really care for books?’

Benjamin Pell Versus the Rest of the World

Tim Adams

‘You hear Benjamin Pell long before you see him.’

Operation

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

‘I like to think now that he knew how much I liked him, from the beginning, and that we were both equal participants in the ritual.’

Abbottabad Pastoral

Humera Afridi

‘Until now, I had never experienced a disaster, or witnessed mass suffering and death close up.’

A Gentle Madness

Humera Afridi

‘Pakistan is a nation of memory keepers. We feed our memories as if they are guests at tea, pay homage to them’

Lovely Girls, Very Cheap

Decca Aitkenhead

‘A bar girl in Ko Samui is employed to attract customers. Almost every bar has at least one girl, and some of the larger bars have up to twenty’.

The Foreign Correspondent

Pallavi Aiyar

‘the absence of Indian foreign correspondents was, and is, unexceptional.’

Baghdad Diary

Nuha al-Radi

‘Last week I went to the Rashid Hotel to pick up a letter which Bob Simpson had brought from Cyprus.‘