Five Dials

A free literary magazine from Hamish Hamilton

Number 39 | Don't Go Too Soon

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What Goes Around

'Riding past a crowded pavement on a hot day, swallowing consecutive gusts of perfume, sunscreen, cigarette smoke, and sometimes even halitosis, you realize just how helplessly intimate we all are in this city.'
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The Ideology of Dinner

'The dinners at the commune were an excuse to convene, to solve problems and, most importantly, to be together.'
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Not Being Shy

'Everybody wanted to buy a taco made by That Guy, the guy who needed to get away from his girlfriend so bad that he basically dug a hole in the ground where he could finally have a little peace.'

Of Immediate Interest

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The Needle and the Damage Done

What's the best title for a book about knitting? Superneedles? Or Bring Knit On?
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How the Oak Came to Life

'The mother, raising her head from the mattress, looked at her son. ‘O,’ she said. A long, low sound. Her mouth a perfect, round simulacrum of the letter.'
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Number 26

Are you looking for German literature? Judith Schalansky, Jan Brandt, Peter Stamm, Demetri Martin, Paul Maliszewski, Tilman Rammstedt, Marjana Gaponenko and Anthea Bell.
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Syria Calling

A document from another time: Robin Yassin-Kassab's diary of his 2008 return journey to Syria, and a Damascus hazed with diesel fumes but still standing.
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Variations on Anne

If the poem is an enigma. If the poem does not offer a solution. If the solution does exist and someone calls out that you must find it. ... Read more
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Number 22

A journey into the forest. William Fiennes on the ash, Tracy Chevalier on the birch, Blake Morrison on the chestnut, Ali Smith on the Scots pine. Plus Philip Hensher, Kate Mosse, Maggie O'Farrell, Tahmima Anam and Susan Elderkin.

Our Town

Dispatches from London

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What Goes Around

'Riding past a crowded pavement on a hot day, swallowing consecutive gusts of perfume, sunscreen, cigarette smoke, and sometimes even halitosis, you realize just how helplessly intimate we all are in this city.'
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Virginia Woolf in the Bomb-scarred City

'This was her grandest bid to bring something back from the ruins. She was not reading despite the bombs; she was reading with them, and the two – reading and bombs – are jumbled together in one of her last letters.'
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Yates Lane, NW8

'Escapees from St Mary’s, Paddington: expectant father smoking; old lady wheeling herself in a wheelchair, smoking; die-hard holding urine sack, blood sack, smoking.'
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Out of Windows

'Last Halloween, a woman was thrown out of a fourth-floor window in Marylebone. I was heading back to my flat on Chiltern Street with the intention of watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, a film that I had always avoided.'
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Diamonds in the Dark

'It is a secret, private, hidden world that operates under a strict set of unspoken internal laws: never screw a partner and once a deal is done it is a 'mazen brucha' and it must be adhered to.'
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