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The stories in this collection range from impossible fantasy to scorching satire. A civil servant finds a new passion for his work when he’s swallowed alive by a crocodile. A struggling writer stumbles on a cemetery where the dead still talk to each other. An arrogant but well-intentioned gentleman provokes an uproar at an aide’s wedding, and in the marital bed. And a young boy finds unexpected salvation on a cold and desolate Christmas Eve.
This vivid new translation by Nicolas Pasternak Slater and Maya Slater illuminates Dostoevsky’s dazzling versatility as a writer. His remarkable short fiction swings from wickedly sharp humour to gripping psychological intensity, from cynical social mockery to moments of unexpected tenderness.