Not the end of the world | Kate Atkinson

Another collection of linked short stories – suddenly they’re everywhere. Wry, surreal, and pleasingly unsettling, the mostly ill-fated cast of characters with their unfortunate beginnings and ignominious endings put me in mind of the Gashlycrumb Tinies. Mythical beings appear in mundane places, duality and metamorphoses abound, and death is never quite the end. There are frequent references to Greek mythology and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, where such occurrences are of course commonplace – and a nice bit of synchronicity as I was binge-watching Buffy boxsets at the time of reading this. Kate Atkinson’s writing is delicious; macabre without being cruel, and quite tender towards her characters despite the misfortunes she inflicts on them. This is another book I wanted to read again as soon I’d finished it.