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  • Published: 18 June 2018
  • ISBN: 9780241979761
  • Imprint: Penguin General UK
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 272
  • RRP: $22.99

The Dreams of Bethany Mellmoth

The dazzling new book from one of Britain's best-selling novelists

A philandering art dealer tries to give up casual love affairs - seeking only stolen kisses as a substitute. A man recounts his personal history through the things he has stolen from others throughout his life. A couple chart the journey of their five year relationship backwards, from awkward reunion to lovelorn first encounter. And, at the heart of the book, a 24-year old young woman, Bethany Mellmoth, embarks on a year-long journey of wishful and tentative self-discovery.
The Dreams of Bethany Mellmoth depicts the random encounters that bring the past bubbling to the surface; the impulsive decisions that irrevocably shape a life; and the endless hesitations and loss-of-nerve that wickedly complicate it. These funny, surprising and moving stories are a resounding confirmation of Boyd's powers as one of our most original and compelling storytellers.

  • Published: 18 June 2018
  • ISBN: 9780241979761
  • Imprint: Penguin General UK
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 272
  • RRP: $22.99

About the author

William Boyd

William Boyd is the author of one work of non-fiction, three collections of short stories and thirteen novels, including the bestselling historical spy thriller Restless – winner of the Costa Novel of the Year – and Any Human Heart, in which the character of Ian Fleming features. Among his other awards are the Whitbread First Novel Prize, the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize, the James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the Prix Jean Monnet. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and an Officier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. In 2005, he was awarded the CBE.

Born in Ghana in 1952, William Boyd spent much of his early life in West Africa. He now divides his time between the south-west of France and Chelsea, where he lives a stone’s throw from James Bond’s London address.

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Praise for The Dreams of Bethany Mellmoth

A riveting short story collection from one of the best

Woman & Home

Boyd delights in themes of deceit and getting one over on the competition...such finely-honed prose

Evening Standard

Boyd has always been eloquent, his narratives memorably stylish

Literary Review

Boyd is dependably a master of what's most true: an always elegant realist whose characters will get under your skin


Boyd shows why he's so often compared to Graham Greene.... brilliant and bewitching collection of stories

Financial Times

Clever and, yes, cinematic


Enjoyably spot-on

Sunday Times

He is a skilled and humorous storyteller, and his pleasure in exploring life's uncertainties is apparent


Highly entertaining

Mail on Sunday

In a 2008 essay, Boyd explained that writing short stories gives him a welcome chance "to change habits, to experiment, to take risks, to try out different voices". And in the best stories here, it's a chance he takes full advantage of, serving up an impressive variety of settings and protagonists

Daily Telegraph

Like stealing badges, like shucking oysters, once you have one of these stories you can't stop. Lights out was after midnight


No one charts the highs and lows of the human condition like Boyd


Quite brilliant. There has been no decline in the wit, the style, the precise observation

The Tablet

Smart, funny and compelling

The Times Books of the Year

Spiky, sparking and simply brilliant

Sunday Mirror

The stories, as is often the case with Boyd, are packed with characters whose lives are upended by random upheavals

Sunday Times

These stories, by one of Britain's most compelling authors about how the post is inescapable - from random encounters to impulsive acts - is funny and surprising


Unfailingly amusing and clever


Varied, entertaining

Daily Mail

What Boyd does so mesmerisingly...is make the insignificant utterly significant...you are confronted by the full force of Boyd's undeniable talent for storytelling, as he inventively plays with time and form, and infuses his prose with themes of lust, love and emotional incompetence


William Boyd is arguably one of Britain's finest living writers...compelling and highly entertaining

Sunday Express

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