If love makes the world go 'round, sex is what keeps it spinning, and this month we're reeling with writing on this most universal of themes. In these stories sex is both subject and object, cause and effect. See how Fatima al-Ali, Nadine Bismuth, Rubem Fonseca, Mar Gómez Glez, Eduardo Halfon, Fernando Iwasaki, Hanoch Levin, Giulio Mozzi, Felix Palma, Adrian Sangeorzan, Care Santos, and Sebastiano Vassalli address the facts (and fictions) of life. We trust you'll be seduced. Elsewhere, we present Chinese writers Zhu Wen and Xu Zechen, and the second installment of Sakumi Tayama's "Hole in the Garden."
A Short Story by Xu Zechen
Hardly anything about this book seems to have aged, least of all the narrator herself, who is perfectly preserved somewhere along the road to adolescence.
A retired general is found dead in central Kiev—hanged, apparently, from a giant Coca-Cola advertising balloon.
If a man comes knocking at your door to steal your magic goldfish, what do you do?
Yet, it is not homosexuality or an Islamic culture that torments the narrator of "An Arab Melancholia"; rather, love is the tyrant in this brief, emotional saga.