Apple and Knife

Apple and Knife


A dazzling, provocative debut story collection from celebrated Indonesian writer Intan Paramaditha, putting fierce female characters centre stage in brilliantly funny and sharp twists on fairy tale.

‘Dark, subversive... Here are fairy tales and myths reworked with a feminist bent’ Tatler

Inspired by horror fiction, myths and fairy tales, Apple and Knife is an unsettling ride that swerves into the supernatural to explore the dangers and power of occupying a female body in today’s world.

These stories set in the Indonesian everyday – in corporate boardrooms, in shanty towns, on dangdut stages – reveal a soupy otherworld stewing just beneath the surface. This is subversive feminist horror at its best, where men and women alike are arbiters of fear, and where revenge is sometimes sweetest when delivered from the grave.

Dark, humorous, and vividly realised, Apple and Knife brings together taboos, inversions, sex and death in a heady, intoxicating mix.


  • A phantasmagorical collection of short stories and reimagined tales, not unlike Angela Carter and Carmen Maria Machado.
    Matthew Janney, Guardian

About the author

Intan Paramaditha

Intan Paramaditha is a writer and academic. Her novel The Wandering (Harvill Secker, Penguin Random House UK), translated from the Indonesian by Stephen J. Epstein, was nominated for the Stella Prize in Australia and awarded the Tempo Best Literary Fiction Prize in Indonesia, the English PEN Translates Award and the PEN/Heim Translation Fund Grant from PEN America. She is the author of the short-story collection Apple and Knife and editor of Deviant Disciples: Indonesian Women Poets, part of the Translating Feminisms series by Tilted Axis Press. Her essay 'On the Complicated Questions Around Writing About Travel' was selected for The Best American Travel Writing 2021. She holds a PhD from New York University and teaches Media and Film Studies at Macquarie University, Sydney.
Learn More

More from this Author

Sign up to the Penguin Newsletter

For the latest books, recommendations, author interviews and more