Ten Sorry Tales by Mick Jackson - review by Sophie Lewis

Sophie Lewis

Small-Town Gothic

Ten Sorry Tales


Faber & Faber 174pp £10.99 order from our bookshop

Within the world of short stories, the evocative genre of the tale is experiencing a revival. From new translations of Ovid and versions of Chaucer to Angela Carter’s modern ‘fairy’ stories, tales are suddenly fashionable. With two acclaimed novels already behind him (including the Booker-shortlisted The Underground Man, 1997), Mick Jackson now rides this wave with assurance, helped along by comparisons to cult figures Roald Dahl, Tim Burton, and Edward Gorey. 

For me, the link with Burton is the most accurate; writer and film director seem to share a vision of small-town kookiness, of the torments endured by shy children and eccentric retirees, and of their flashes of genius. In ‘A row-boat in the cellar’, Mister Morris beats retirement blues by

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

The Art of Darkness

Cambridge, Shakespeare

Follow Literary Review on Twitter