Francesca Wade

Modern Magic

What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours


Picador 263pp £12.99 order from our bookshop

In the final story of Helen Oyeyemi’s dazzling collection, an acerbic depiction of office workers bullying a colleague – salad dressing spilled on her desk, corrupt file attachments crashing her computer – takes a turn for the uncanny when Eva, the enigmatic victim, loses her diary. The story’s narrator, another colleague who has taken pity on her, recovers the leather-bound tome and undoes its brass clasp. As she scans the pages, the book begins to unfold ‘like a hand’, enveloping the narrator in a dizzying whirl of voices from Eva’s head. This collection abounds with such disorientating surprises: locked rooms reveal hidden treasures; animals, ghosts and dolls display unprecedented empathy; and supernatural presences lurk everywhere, sometimes benevolent, sometimes menacing. 

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • What a charming, candid blogpost from one of our dear contributing editors. ,
    • RT : The first guess from one of my 1st graders was “death” and such an awed, somber, reflective hush fell over the clas… ,
    • Merry Christmas from Literary Review! Hope your stockings were laden with books, and the tree bending under the weight of further books....,
    • Last minute Christmas gift required? We're offering discounts on all our subscriptions (20% no less!) with the cod… ,
    • In this issue's 'Silenced Voices', Lucy Popescu writes of Thailand's restrictive lese-majesty laws and their latest… ,
    • "Gunn was a disciple of the American formalist Yvor Winters, but Winters’s poetry could never give off such a scent… ,
    • Christmas gift hunting? Why not give the gift of being even better read? We're offering discounts on all our subscr… ,