Not the End of the World

A stunning collection of literary and ultra-readable short stories

Not the End of the World is Kate Atkinson’s first collection of short stories. Playful and profound, they explore the world we think we know whilst offering a vision of another world which lurks just beneath the surface of our consciousness, a world where the myths we have banished from our lives are startlingly present and where imagination has the power to transform reality.

From Charlene and Trudi, obsessively making lists while bombs explode softly in the streets outside, to gormless Eddie, maniacal cataloguer of fish, and Meredith Zane who may just have discovered the secret to eternal life, each of these stories shows that when the worlds of material existence and imagination collide, anything is possible.

Read more


Download a reading guide and discussion questions for Not the End of the World to support your Book Club or Reading Group.


Please note: Resources can contain spoilers.

Explore resources


Kate Atkinson is at her most adroit, imaginative and subversive in this dazzling new collection of semi-mythical short stories…exploding with mood-making inventiveness and Atkinson’s trademark dark wit…she takes the short story to new and playful levels.

The Scotsman

Moving and funny, and crammed with incidental wisdom.

Sunday Times

An exceptionally funny, quirky and bold writer.

Independent on Sunday

I can think of few writers who can make the ordinary collide with the extraordinary to such beguiling effect…left me so fizzing with admiration.


Exceptional…Sharp, witty and completely compelling.

Daily Mail

Inventive and moving, these are truly tales for the new millennium.

Good Book Guide

You may also like these books