Eley Williams’ debut collection Attrib. and other stories. showed that she was a writer of utter brilliance, marrying creative flair and intelligence with subtle charm and depth of emotion. In her new novel The Liars’ Dictionary, Peter Winceworth a Victorian lexicographer inserts bogus definitions into a dictionary. In the present day, Mallory a young overworked and underpaid intern is tasked with uncovering these entries before the dictionary is digitised. Braiding together contemporary and historical narratives, Eley Williams explores themes of trust, agency and creativity, celebrating the rigidity, fragility and absurdity of language.
Eley Williams’ Attrib. and other stories was awarded the Republic of Consciousness Prize and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize in 20182018. With stories anthologised in The Penguin Book of the Contemporary British Short Story, Liberating the Canon and Still Worlds Turning, she is a Fellow of the MacDowell Colony and the Royal Society of Literature.
“[Eley] Williams is a writer for whom one struggles to find comparison, because she has arrived in a class of her own” The Guardian.