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Issue #28, 2006
The issue in your hands offers the best kind of magic. Steven Millhauser's truly fantastical story, "The Other Town," conjures a hamlet with a dark doppelgänger; Antonya Nelson plunges us into domestic chaos in her razor-sharp story "OBO"; in the poem "Minotaur, No Maze," Matthea Harvey imagines a different kind of mythical beast; and in the story "Perseids" by New Voice Emma Cline, we are dropped into remotest Greenland. Steven King, overlord of the horror genre, also subverted our expectations with his arresting story of a man recovering from a serious head trauma. And what is summer without feasting? Chris Offutt writes about possum and squirrel, Lydia Davis ruminates on the pleasure of dining alone, and Lan Samantha Chang remembers a gastronomic affair.
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Stephen King, Anthony Doerr, Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, Steven Millhauser, Antonya Nelson, Yiyun Li
MEMORY • When I say I was confused, I mean that at first I didn't know who people were, or what had happened, or why I was in such awful pain.
VILLAGE 113 • The Village Director stands under an umbrella. The sky is a threadbare curtain of silver. 'It's true,' he says. 'We've been slated for submergence.'
SANDMAN • 'What is Jonathan, or any of you, going to do when the clowns sneak up behind you and clobber you over the head with a tire iron?' Ms. Hempel asked the eighth-graders.
THE OTHER TOWN • Here and there we also catch glimpses of the replicators, the ones who see to it that all changes in our town are repeated in the other town, and who do their best to keep out of our way.
OBO • Abby was coming to Christmas with her English professor's wife's family. She'd been invited on account of the lie she'd told Dr. Shapiro, which was that her own family had disowned her.
PRISON • 'Don't let her out of your sight,' Luo said. 'She has our child in her.'
'It's not like she'll run away,' Yilan said. 'She needs the money.'
Emma Cline, Richard A. Sanchez, Diana Park
PERSEIDS • The reporters talked about 'child and mother,' 'frozen solid,' recently died.' 'Mystery,' they said. But it wasn't a mystery.
THE GIRL NEXT DOOR • Thomas McCoy said: 'Your uncle's just going to live in your backyard forever?'
'Not forever,' Bobby said, 'just as long as it takes.'
Ben Doyle, Cicily Parks, Matthea Harvey, Dean Young, Alan Ziegler, Michael Dickman, Alison Stine, Lia Purpura, Grace Paley
HOW TO READ A MACKEREL SKY
IN COLDER WEATHER
Roddy Doyle, Will Self
The author of The Woman Who Walked into Doors, The Commitments, Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha, and other books talks with Tom Grimes about Ireland new and old, the terrors of Christian fiction, and the duty of a writer to be stupid and tell the truth.
The author of eleven books, including the upcoming The Book of Dave, talks with Rick Moody about blogging, the walk from airports to major cities, plus churchy relatives and ambivalent Jewishness.
Lost & Found:
Gerald Howard, Paul D. Kretkowski, Steve Almond, Jason Myers
ON IRWIN SHAW'S The Young Lions
ON FRANÇOIS CAMOIN'S Like Love, but Not Exactly
ON MARIANNE MOORE'S Predilections
Chris Offutt, Lydia Davis, Lan Samantha Chang
UP YOUR GOOSE WITH A BONELESS DUCK • There are two kinds of writers: those who cook, and those who don't.
EATING FISH ALONE • On the ritual of dining to please only yourself.
THE END OF LAUGHTER • Over a series of ravenous dinners, a not-quite love affair.