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Hush . . . Hush Sweet Charlotte

Kazushige Abe

‘The crucial thing was to cool the baby off, bring the fever down.’

Self-Portrait

Martin Amis

‘You’ve got your catflap, I’ve got my guy.’

The Indian Uprising

Ann Beattie

‘Then winter ended and spring came, and I thought, even if I don’t believe there’s a poem in anything any more, maybe I’ll write a story.’

Quarter Past Midnight

Marie-Helene Bertino

‘Flute-like, gauze-filled, late-afternoon sunshine. Rainbow bracelets on the carpet. They use their tongues to wet their lips. Girls.’

Blasphemy

Fatima Bhutto

The tourists are gone. They’ve fled to Islamabad, along with the landlords and the hoteliers and the battalions of police that used to defend them, and certainty has left with them.

Sand

John Biguenet

‘The catastrophe had not happened to all of us, we began to understand, but to each of us.’

Off the Road

Andrew Brown

‘She acted as if her own desires magnetized the world, and when you were close to her, she magnetized your moral compass too.’

Satanás

Olivia Clare

‘I dislike sleep, he told the girl, matches keep me awake.’

Hare in Love

Sam Coll

A wry, fanciful fable about how love can transform both nature and fate.

The Mast Year

Diane Cook

‘Sounds like a mast year . . . it’s a thing that happens to trees. But sometimes it happens to people too.’

Girl on Girl

Diane Cook

‘Marni on Mack. Mack in Marni. A little Mack and Marni. My head rushes. I want to watch, hear the sounds.’

Spelling Problem

Lydia Davis

‘A woman from Barnard College calls me and asks if I would please spell ‘hemorrhaging’ for her.’

Birdie

Ann DeWitt

‘By the end of the summer, the city was fed up with our antics.’

The Love Machine

Julia Elliott

‘Beatrice was my first love. The dark contours of her delicate skeleton, the glowing flesh made translucent by my X-ray gaze, drove me crazy.’

Domain

Louise Erdrich

‘Seven corporations control the afterlife now, and many people spend their lives amassing the money to upload into the best.’

The Blood Drip

Brian Evenson

‘They had stumbled upon a town and tried to approach it, but had been driven off with stones.’