Book Reviews

Yuri Herrera’s “Signs Preceding the End of the World”

It’s a novel of thresholds and permeable borders, but it begins with holes: a sinkhole that forms as the protagonist, Makina, is watching, in a town “riddled with bullet holes and tunnels bored by five centuries of voracious silver lust.” This is an opening scene which fuses the upheavals of nature with human violence and greed, underlining the instability that runs throughout.


Horacio Castellanos Moya’s “The Dream of My Return”

What is impressive about The Dream of My Return is how it manages to have it both ways: to treat the Freudian psyche like the cheap myth it is, but to also show that when push comes to shove, we will rely on it because we need it.


Jean-Philippe Toussaint’s “Urgency and Patience”

Jean-Philippe Toussaint’s novellas astonish in how they allow us into the heads of his unexpectedly fascinating narrators. Appropriately enough, his slender essay collection, Urgency and Patience, take us just as deeply into the mind of this singular author.


June 2015

Connections, Missed and Made: The Queer Issue

These are stirring notes as we launch our sixth annual Queer issue.


Pansies

I’d never found the plant or flower that could serve as punctuation.


A Faun’s Afternoon

The hand of the pocket watch winds on with a sound like mocking laughter.


From “The Year of Pearls”

The label reads: RENATA. IN THE EVENT OF MY DEATH DESTROY WITHOUT READING.


Fakes

How could anyone accuse Mr. Pawlikowski of something so awful?


From “The Memory of a Secret”

What do we know about our parents?


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