The Pink Jumpsuit: short fictions, tall truths

Emma Neale



In Emma Neale’s first collection of short fiction, the tales range from the surreal to the real; from the true to the tall. This collection includes some of her internationally recognised flash fiction and more extended examinations of the eerie gaps and odd swerves in intimate relationships. There are confidence tricksters, compulsive liars, emotional turn-coats, the pulse of jumbled childhood memory still felt in adult life, the weird metamorphosis of fantasy hardening into reality. A woman meets up with an ex-lover after twenty years, to be told an outrageous secret; a mother takes her ailing son to a doctor for an undocumented condition; a bride is left at the altar; a brother and sister reel from a family tragedy decades after the event; a children’s birthday party turns all Queen of the Flies; a hidden family legacy appears in a grand-daughter’s strange affliction. From everyday realism to the speculative and imaginary, recurring motifs in these stories (the scientist father; the mystery of identity even within families; what we can’t know about even those closest to us) toy with the boundaries between memory and the unknown: the blending of the real and the invented.

Additional information

Weight 0.9 kg
Dimensions 15.3 × 23.4 cm

About the Author

Emma Neale is the author of six novels and six collections of poetry. Her novel Fosterling (Vintage, Random House [NZ], 2011) was short-listed for the Sir Julius Vogel Award for Science Fiction and Fantasy 2011. Her novel Billy Bird (Vintage, Penguin Random [NZ], 2016) was short-listed for the Acorn Prize, Ockham NZ Book Awards 2017 and long-listed in the International Dublin Literary Award 2018. Her poetry collection The Truth Garden (Otago University Press, 2012) was awarded the Kathleen Grattan Award for an unpublished manuscript 2011, and Tender Machines (Otago University Press, 2015) was long-listed in the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards.

Among other awards, she has received the Macmillan Brown Prize for Writers for a portfolio of poems, Timekeeper, Canterbury University (NZ), 1991; an English Speaking Union Cultural Scholarship, ESU Cultural Seminar, Cambridge University (UK), 1999; the Todd/Creative New Zealand New Writer’s Bursary, 2000; the inaugural Janet Frame/NZSA Memorial Prize for Literature (2008) and the Robert Burns Writer’s Fellowship (2012). Her poetry was short-listed for the inaugural Sarah Broom Poetry Award (2014). She has also held the Philip and Diane Beatson Writer’s Award (2015); the University of Auckland Michael King Writer’s Fellowship (2019); and in 2020 she received the Lauris Edmond Memorial Award for a Distinguished Contribution to Poetry.

Until recently, Emma edited the literary journal, Landfall. She works as a freelance editor, and co-supervises two creative/critical PhD candidates at the University of Otago.

Look Inside


ISBN: 9780995132993

Pages: 128

Dimensions: 153mm x 234mm

Format: Trade Paperback

Author: Emma Neale

Published: 19 July 2021