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May 2006

Criminal Content

In the first of two police lineups of international noir authors, you'll find none of the usual suspects, and positive IDs on all of the perpetrators.

Abdelilah Hamdouchi's The Last Wager, from Morocco, reveals a detective wrestling with police reforms as he investigates a septuagenarian bride's murder.

Brazilian Carlos Machado's "The Man with the Long Mustache" develops the dangerous pastime of following strangers for sport.

Algerian author Mounsi's "Villon and I" introduces a juvenile delinquent from the French underworld to poetry.

Italian Leonardo Gori's nineteenth-century tale set in Florence, "The Big Sizzle," finds a chef murdered in his own kitchen.

A pickpocket on a train chooses his victim in The Fourth Take, by Slovenian author Polona Glavan.

The birth of a grandson, a clairvoyant, and a trip to Switzerland make up the pieces of the puzzle in German author Friedrich Glauser's Fever.

Finally, we have some history with these disreputable types, from the experimental fever dream of REX by Jose Manuel Prieto from Cuba, to the Mexican novel, The Black Minutes, by Martín Solares.

Special Note from the Editors: Starting May 15, you're invited to a book group on Dubravka Ugre…ic's new novel, The Ministry of Pain. This forum will kick off a series of monthly book groups hosted by famous book critics from The Believer, The Paris Review, The Complete Review, and more. Join us then!

Chinese Woman’s Spirit
You are pallid, you are losing blood and life. You stop a cab. The driver peers into his rearview mirror. You are not there. You leave a sword on the back seat in lieu of the fare. You become a trickle…
Translated from Greek
The Thief
Vladimir (for some reason) made me happy. We went to the circus together and watched the sunrise. At night I would rest my cheek on his chest and dream of snow. He would read me fairy tales and make me…
Translated from Greek
The Big Sizzle
By Leonardo Gori
TRANSLATOR’S NOTE:“Una grossa frittura” is a very recent story by Leonardo Gori, and it is about to be published as part of an anthology entitled Giallo Uovo (Mondolibri, April 2006).…
Translated from Italian by Anne Milano Appel
from “The Fourth Take”
By Polona Glavan
As he was hastily and wearily glancing through the window at Gare du Nord, Michel felt as if he recalled Christophe’s face at least twice a minute. Christophe’s face was big and long, slow…
Translated from Slovene by the author
With Borges
Nachtigall, Liebe, Herz, you can read Heine without the help of a dictionary,” he said. And he enjoyed the possibilities German allowed of making up words, as Goethe's Nebelglanz, “the…