Fiction

RECENT REVIEWS

Paranoia, the Realistic Response

Paranoia, the Realistic Response

TOWARD THE END of Salvador, Joan Didion’s account of her visit to El Salvador during its 12-year civil war, one episode crystallizes the “local vocation for terror” that so gripped the small La...

Love Lays Ghastly Traps for the Soul

Love Lays Ghastly Traps for the Soul

ON THE tasteful pink and gray cover of Rose Tremain’s new story collection, The American Lover, a beautiful slender woman with a blond pageboy poses in the style of a 1950s tearoom model wearing a ...

The Revolution Will Not Be Simplified

The Revolution Will Not Be Simplified

TO CONVEY the cruel circus of Communist-era Romania as it was still unfolding required truly novel modes of storytelling if one was to make it past the country’s powerful censors. To that end, Norm...

A Hundred Thousand Years of Making Love

A Hundred Thousand Years of Making Love

THE DEFINING MOMENT of the 2005 movie Me and You and Everyone We Know is this: two brothers, six and 14 years old, sit in front of a computer pretending to be an older man in a chatroom, cybersexing ...

The New Western, Realism and Redemption

The New Western, Realism and Redemption

STORIES ABOUT THE WEST have long mythologized gun-toting cowboys who brought civilization and tamed the Wild West, like the legendary frontiersman Daniel Boone, who inspired hundreds of violent tales ...

More Ravishing with Each Blow

More Ravishing with Each Blow

EVEN WITH all the attention that the media devotes to childhood and parenthood, from blog posts and Facebook albums to celebrity “lifestyle” sites and anti-vaccine campaigns, it is rare to see th...

“The Strange Territory of That Room”

“The Strange Territory of That Room”

TOWARD THE END of Robert Aldrich’s 1955 noir classic Kiss Me Deadly, a seemingly conventional detective story, a woman gets her hands on a mysterious and coveted box. She opens it slowly, and it em...

Ashes to Ashes

Ashes to Ashes

THE POWERFUL and innovative novel Neverhome follows a young woman, Ash Thompson, on her journey to fight for the Union army during the Civil War and then to return home to her farm and beloved husban...

Prying: Jhave on Tender Claws’ New App

Prying: Jhave on Tender Claws’ New App

PRY IS AN INTERACTIVE multimedia fiction created and launched as an iOS app by Tender Claws, the duo Danny Cannizzaro and Samantha Gorman, in 2014. ¤ First, the Verdict My opinion: Everyone in...

Albania’s Prophet of the Surveillance State

Albania’s Prophet of the Surveillance State

ALBANIA, over the course of its unique history, has found itself, or perhaps even willed itself into being the patria sacra of Europe. Like Giorgio Agamben’s homo sacer, condemned to be both cursed ...

The New New Africa

The New New Africa

AMERICANS have probably learned more in the last three months about Liberia and Sierra Leone than in the previous 10 years. In the unrelieved darkness that comprises a particular Western imagining of...

Carnage Hill, or Frank Bascombe’s Late Years

Carnage Hill, or Frank Bascombe’s Late Years

IN THE SECOND PARAGRAPH of Richard Ford’s 1986 novel The Sportswriter, right after Ford introduces us to Frank Bascombe, the character who has gone on to occupy the author’s attentions for the bet...