‘A enir cenedl ar unwaith?’
Prayer at the End: Twenty Three Stories
Publisher: Cockatrice Books, 2015 | ISBN: 978-1912368129 | Format: 20.3×12.7cm paperback | Length: 152 pages | Price: £7.99.
Prayer at the End: Twenty-Three Stories is the third of a series of three collections by Rob Mimpriss. It is preceded by Reasoning and For His Warriors.
When women asked Derek Roberts about the scar on his shoulder, he would say that he had born with three arms and the doctors had left him two. If they laughed too loudly or demanded the truth he would explain that he could have been born one of identical twins, but this second twin had never separated or matured, developing only as a nerveless excrescence that the doctors had removed. And he might also say that the loss made him sad: sad that he could have had a brother, could have been twice the man he was in the world, sad also that but for chance he would have been the stunted one, the spare limb.
A cigarette quenched in the Menai Strait makes a man vow to live a selfish life. The memory of an unborn twin makes a man regret the selfish life he has lived. An elderly shopkeeper befriends the teenagers outside his shop, and a lonely householder sets out to confront the trespassers on his land.
‘Heaving with loss, regret, and familial bonds.’
‘Whilst the publication dates of Rob Mimpriss’ three short story collections span a decade — from 2005 to 2015 — the fluency between volumes belies this interval. Reasoning, For His Warriors and Prayer at the End are dark, dense reads. This Welsh writer has a practised confidence, and each of his seventy-three stories collected here is marked by an indelibly bleak angle into society.’
Sophie Baggott, New Welsh Review
‘In the most seemingly unremarkable of Rob Mimpriss’s pieces there is a skill, and a mystery and elusiveness to that skill, which other short-story writers might envy. This is a masterful collection.’
‘Quietly written, contemplative... whose powerhouse is the depth of its moral reflection.’
Siân Preece, Rhys Davies Competition
‘An immaculate collection.’
Books by Rob Mimpriss
Pugnacious Little Trolls
‘freely and fiercely inventive short stories… supercharged with ideas.’
Jon Gower, Nation Cymru
Prayer at the End: Twenty-Three Stories
‘heaving with loss, regret and familial bonds.’
For His Warriors: Thirty Stories
‘sketched with a depth and sureness of touch which makes them memorable and haunting.’
Caroline Clark, gwales.com
Reasoning: Twenty Stories
‘dark, complex, pensively eloquent’
Sophie Baggott, New Welsh Review
The Sleeping Bard: Three Nightmare Visions of the World, of Death, and of Hell
Translated by T. Gwynn Jones, with an introduction by Rob Mimpriss.
A Book of Three Birds
‘Lucid, skilful, and above all, of enormous timely significance.’
‘In this exemplary collaboration between medical science and imagination, lives preserved in official records, in the language and diagnoses of their times, are restored not just to light, but to humanity and equality. This anthology is a resurrection.’
Hallowe’en in the Cwm: The Stories of Owen Wynne Jones
‘An invaluable translation.’
Going South: The Stories of Richard Hughes Williams
Translated by Rob Mimpriss, with an introduction by E. Morgan Humphreys