fiction

The Castle - Franz Kafka

Kafka's last novel, The Castle is set in a remote village covered almost permanently in snow and dominated by a castle and its staff of dictatorial, sexually predatory bureaucrats. The novel breaks new ground in exploring the relation between the individual and power, asking why the villagers so readily submit to an authority which may exist only in their collective imagination.

Nausea - Jean-Paul Sartre

Nausea is the story of Antoine Roquentin, a French writer who is horrified at his own existence.

How late it was, how late - James Kelman

"Literary vandalism" and "frankly, crap" was the high praise for Kelman's only Booker Prize winning novel, about Sammy, a middle aged man coming to terms with his blindness.

The dome sketch - omen

A three part comedy sketch very loosely inspired by the TV show Under the Dome.

A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry

Cover of a Fine Balance

Story set in Mumbai between 1975 and 1984 during a period of increased government power and crackdowns on civil liberties called 'The Emergency', looking at the changes in Indian society since independence.

Darkness at Noon - Arthur Koestler

Darkness at Noon dramatises the Moscow show trials and the elimination of the Bolshevik old guard by "No.1" In the Fatherland of Revolution. Told primarily from the point of view of N.S. Rubashov a fictitious merging of real Bolsheviks known to Koestler

The Good Soldier Švejk - Jaroslav Hašek

The Good Soldier Svejk - Jaroslav Hasek

Satirical anti-war novel in which the absurdity and hypocrisy of the military, the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the church are repeatedly revealed through the main character's enthusiasm for obeying authority.

The case of comrade Tulayev - Victor Serge

Forced labourers at work under Stalin

Masterful fictionalisation of the purges and how they affected the various character types in the political upheaval of Stalinist Russia.

The day before the revolution - Ursula Le Guin

The day before the revolution - Ursula Le Guin

A prequel of sorts to the novel the dispossessed.