Granta 132: Possession

Possession takes many forms, and at the heart of it is death and dereliction, invasion and submission. Nothing can be still, as poet Rae Armantrout writes. Possession and loss are intertwined. From Bella Pollen’s retelling of being visited – repeatedly – by an incubus to Oliver Bullough’s reports from Ukraine and Crimea in the wake of revolution, this issue takes on the human drive to possess – a person, a home, a territory – and the many ways we become possessed – by ideas, by desires, by spirits. With new writing by Patrick deWitt, Sonia Faleiro, Greg Jackson, Hanan al-Shaykh, Deb Olin Unferth and more.

You can also read Kerry Howley’s ‘The Cage of You’ and Alan Rossi’s ‘The Buddhist’ from the print issue, both available online for free.

New Writing

This month on

Ariana Reines introduces a photoessay by Jason Lazarus
Juliet Jacques on memoir writing and gender
A new poem by Angélica Freitas

From the Granta archives:

Harold Pinter and a New World Order
Geoff Dyer and the rooftops of Brixton in the eighties
Claire Messud reclaims her father’s past on a journey to Damascus
Ann Beattie and friendship in the ruins of the Roman Forum
William Gass and the first winter of his married life

Five Things Right Now: Evie Wyld

Today, Best of Young British Novelist Evie Wyld publishes her most recent work, Everything Is Teeth. She shares five things she’s reading, watching and thinking about right now.

1. The Book of Sharks by Richard Ellis
This was a kind of storybook to me as a kid – there’s a painting he did of a diver being pursued by what looks like an albino great white shark, while a megalodon lurks in the background. I recently got all my shark books back from my friend Joe Sumner, who has been illustrating my memoir Everything is Teeth, so I’m going back over them.

2. House of Cards
I’ve just started watching this, and understand such a minimal amount of what’s going on, but I love it. The first time Kevin Spacey addresses you directly is just amazing. I love the way he knocks twice on things when he’s done with talking.

3. Breaking Bad
Very late to this, but the reason I had to start watching House of Cards (which I’m also late to) is that I felt so traumatised by the final series of Breaking Bad. I can’t even really think about it, but it’s flavoured my summer.

4. Viviane Schwarz’s Anxiety
This can be found on Viv’s blog if you look hard, and it’s one of the most beautiful and funny things. It also captures something so elemental about anxiety – she’s turning it into a book which I cannot wait to get hold of.

5. H Day by Renée French
One of the reasons there’s no literary fiction on this list is that I’m finding reading difficult at the moment, and this book, which is a graphic novel about migraines (and an ant infestation) is the best description of what that’s all about.



Free Stuff

Write to for the chance to win:

Two copies of Jellyfish by Janice Galloway
Two pairs of tickets to see the new adaptation of T.S. Eliot’s The Cocktail Party at the Print Room
Five pairs of tickets to any First Book Award event at the Edinburgh International Book Festival