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The 2021 Graywolf Press African Fiction Prize is now open for submissions via Submittable through August 31, 2021.

No Animals We Could Name

Ted Sanders
The animals (human or otherwise) in Ted Sanders's inventive, wistful stories are oddly familiar, yet unlike anyone you've met before. A lion made of bedsheets, with chicken bones for teeth, is brought to life by a grieving mother. When Raphael the pet lizard mysteriously loses his tail, his owners find themselves ever more desperate to keep him alive, in one sense or another. A pensive tug-of-war between an amateur angler and a halibut unfolds through the eyes of both fisherman and fish. And in the collection's unifying novella, an unusual guest's arrival at a party sets idle gears turning in startling new ways.

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The winner of the Bakeless Prize for Fiction, a bold debut collection

About the Author

Ted  Sanders
Credit: Lillian-Yvonne Bertram
Ted Sanders is the author of No Animals We Could Name, winner of the 2011 Katharine Bakeless Nason Prize for Fiction, selected by Stacey D’Erasmo and awarded by Middlebury College and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. He teaches at the University of Illinois and Parkland College in Urbana-Champaign.
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  • “In Sanders’s formally rigorous debut collection . . . characters have relationships with a variety of animals—domestic, wild, and even imaginary.”—Publishers Weekly
  • “In his debut collection of stories, Sanders explores the ways in which any attempt to know another person ultimately falls short.”Time Out Chicago
  • “Through fresh prose that is emotional and dispassionate at once, [Sanders] has done something great in No Animals We Could Name, creating a complex work that speaks to the oddity of modern life.”—ZYZZYVA
  • “[It’s] the stories themselves that are the strange creatures [and] watching [Sanders] bring them to life is a rare pleasure. . . . He makes us see everything anew.”—Star Tribune (Minneapolis)


This book is made possible, in part, through the Katharine Bakeless Nason Prize, awarded by the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference of Middlebury College in support of emerging writers, and by the generosity of Graywolf Press donors like you.
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