Jessie Greengrass

One of Elif Shafak’s selected writers for the International Literature Showcase


“Jessie Greengrass makes words dance. And she makes me want to stand up and dance with them. Whether turning her head to short stories or novels, she is a brilliant, emerging talent.”

Elif Shafak

Quixotically determined to reach the centre. Funnier than expected.

Jessie Greengrass was born in 1982. Her short story collection, An Account of the Decline of the Great Auk, According to One Who Saw it, won the Edge Hill prize in 2016. Her first novel, Sight, was published in 2017 and has been shortlisted for the Women’s Prize and longlisted for the Wellcome Prize. She lives in Northumberland with her partner and their two children.

Listen to Jessie on BBC Radio 3’s Free Thinking programme.

‘Exceptional…The prose is unsentimental, measured, breathtaking in its elegance…remarkably moving’ The Spectator

‘A slow burning, beautifully written debut…accomplished and melancholic’ Irish Times

‘Remarkable and affecting’ Literary Review

‘A stunning debut’ Guardian

‘Precise and moving…The pages on the mother’s decline are a masterclass in wrenching, pitiless truth…the potted stories of Röntgen, Freud and Hunter form a fluid, richly associative historic narrative of investigation into the body and the mind, about seeking constantly to expand the borders of what we can see’ Daily Telegraph

Writing is often a solitary activity, particularly when combined with small children, and so I am enormously grateful for this opportunity to reach beyond myself, and to feel connected outside of these limited borders.



An Account of the Decline of the Great Auk, According to One Who Saw It, John Murray, 2015 Sight, John Murray, 2018

Contact Jessie


Twitter: @JessGreengrass


Lisa Baker [email protected]


John Murray, contact: Alice Herbert ([email protected])