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Research Notes

Meditations on the Mother Tongue by An Tran

The methodology is simple, but requires technical finesse: Firmly staple an object to the mind, such that it cannot move, and then observe the subsequent results.

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Fiction

Old Smoke by Michael Horton

I smell smoke. I’ve smelled it for three days now and I can’t smell anything else. Old smoke. I experimented with breathing through my mouth. It’s not there then.

Book Reviews

Play House by Saikat Majumdar

The North American debut of Saikat Majumdar’s Play House was originally published in India as The Firebird and short-listed for the 2015 Atta Galatta-Bangalore Literature Festival Prize in Fiction.

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Research Notes

Gillian Best on The Last Wave

There were two key bits of research I did for The Last Wave: the first, speaking to accomplished Channel swimmer Sally Minty-Gravett, and the second, a weekend trip to Dover.

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Fiction

Matchsticks by Jennifer Todhunter

I remove two matches from the sun-bleached cardboard box on my dash and hand one to John. He pauses, a slight display of resistance. But he takes it, just as he always takes what I have to give.

Book Reviews

Colonel Lágrimas by Carlos Fonseca, tr Megan McDowell

Like the genius that inspired it, Carlos Fonseca’s debut novel follows an unlikely trajectory: Introduced to the eponymous colonel near the end of his story, the reader assembles a life from episodes culled interchangeably from past, present, and apocalyptic future.

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Research Notes

Erin Pringle on The Whole World at Once

I wrote and revised most of the stories in The Whole World at Once in various stages of mourning, a decade after my father’s death, during my best friend’s death and a few years later, my sister’s. So, in that process, I struggled a lot understanding a world that did not follow the rules it’s supposed to in fiction.

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Fiction

Somniloquy by Alex Blum

On a hot afternoon in late July, Daphne’s folks invite her to the kitchen. She hops onto her favorite, high-backed chair, folds her sticky hands in front of her, and waits. Her mother glances at her father. He nods.

Book Reviews

Twelve Stories of Russia: A Novel, I Guess by A.J. Perry

The title of A.J. Perry’s first book, Twelve Stories of Russia: A Novel, I Guess, presents the reader with an ambiguity.

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Research Notes

Dennie Wendt on Hooper's Revolution

I had written an absurdist novel about corporate life and brand marketing that I’m not entirely sure the world needed, but I thought it was pretty good.

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Fiction

Future Kings and Sofas by Becky Mandelbaum

Because his father and his father’s father were both veterinarians, and because he could often be found carrying crickets and cockroaches to the outdoors in the cradle of his palms, all of us, including Mr. Cooper, assumed little Tim was destined to become a veterinarian…