Fresh stylish new translations of Gogol’s greatest short stories collected in a beautiful edition ‘One of the most profound and influential writers Russia has ever produced he is probably also the funniest’ Guardian ‘The most morally complete writer: baffled outraged reverent mock-didactic mocking all at once. He honours life by feeling no one way about it’ GEORGE SAUNDERS No writer has captured the absurdity of the human condition as acutely as Nikolai Gogol. In a lively new translation by Oliver Ready this collection contains his great classic stories – ‘The Overcoat’ ‘The Nose’ and ‘Diary of a Madman’ – alongside lesser known gems depicting life in the Russian and Ukranian countryside. Together they reveal Gogol’s marvellously skewed perspective moving between the urban and the rural with painfully sharp humour and scorching satire. Strikingly modern in his depictions of society’s shambolic structures Gogol plunders the depths of bureaucratic and domestic banalities to unearth moments of dark comedy and outrageous corruption. Defying categorisation the stories in this collection range from the surreal to the satirical to the grotesque united in their exquisite psychological acuteness and tender insights into the bizarre irrationalities of the human soul.