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Best Book of 2013: Tom Drury’s Pacific

John Patrick McHugh

‘There is a remarkable flow to the novel, like that aimless but essential drunken chatter after your third pint.’ John Patrick McHugh on why Tom Drury’s Pacific is the best book of 2013.

The Trouble With Rape

April Ayers Lawson

April Ayers Lawson on rape, trauma, and the difficulty of speaking out about sexual abuse.

On M.I.A.

Momtaza Mehri

Momtaza Mehri on M.I.A. – part of a series on modern musical icons.

En Route to The Promised Land

Ken Light

Ken Light revisits the photos he took of immigrants crossing the border between Mexico and the US in the 1980s.

Fyodor Denisovich Konstantinov

Lev Ozerov

‘A piece of boxwood, gripped in a vise, / waits on the workbench for his knife.’ Poetry by Lev Ozerov, translated from the Russian by Boris Dralyuk, and introduced by Robert Chandler.

All Hail the Holy Bone

Maggie O’Farrell

‘It is part angel, part lepidopteran, part Rorschach inkblot.’

The Heavens

Sandra Newman

‘It was one of those parties where no one knew the hostess.’

No Machine Could Do It

Eugene Lim

‘In the future we have to be as interesting to the AI as our pets are to us.’

Dividing Lines

Jack Losh

Jack Losh reports from rebel-held Bria in the Central African Republic, where fighting has forced thousands into a displacement camp.

Bohemian Rhapsody in Five Acts

Tiffany Murray

Tiffany Murray on living with Freddie Mercury as a child.

The Woman Dies

Aoko Matsuda

‘The woman dies. She dies to provide a plot twist. She dies to develop the narrative. She dies for cathartic effect. She dies because no one could think of what else to do with her.’ Aoko Matsuda, translated from the Japanese by Polly Barton.

Terrors

Kiese Laymon

An excerpt from Heavy: An American Memoir by Kiese Laymon

Ghost Wall

Sarah Moss

An excerpt from Sarah Moss's Ghost Wall, published by Granta Books.

Tether Tennis

John Kinsella

‘Tryptamine skies and the forehand backhand falter / in earth’s revolutions’