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Trump Sky Alpha

Mark Doten

‘Mr President, we can get you into a bunker with full communication equipment and you can give your address there, you just can’t do it in a goddamn plastic blimp at the start of World War III.’

Revolutions

Jen George

‘Small praise was like a drug for party members, though we used real drugs too, hard ones, drugs that imbued one with the facility for ruthless violence and multiple orgasms.’

Day 4

Rachel B. Glaser

‘She sat sweating on the curb as her mother’s narrow face hovered over the parking lot like a hologram.’

Yport

Lauren Groff

‘She pokes her head through the skylights and sees the tide far out, the exposed seabed sinister as the surface of the moon. Tiny people pick their way across.’

Leaving Gotham City

Yaa Gyasi

‘I can’t remember the last time we said I love you before hanging up the phone. I can’t even remember the last time we said goodbye.’

The Meat Suit

Garth Risk Hallberg

‘All life is suffering. At the zendo where Jolie went Thursdays after sixth period, not much in the way of portable wisdom got dispensed, but this was, near as she could tell, the through line.’

Country & Eastern

Greg Jackson

‘Anyone could find courage when the World-Historical Spirit had selected you to enact your martyrdom on the Six O’Clock News. But in the shadows, in secret, unrecognized?’

Remembering Westgate

Sana Krasikov

‘I wonder if the only way to grasp what is terrifying and unimaginable for those of us who haven’t experienced it is to feel around the contours of inescapability, the boundary of its negative space.’

The Answers

Catherine Lacey

‘And each time I hit the tarmac I had this terrible feeling that the trip I’d just taken had never even happened, that I’d spent hundreds for a memory I could barely recall.’

Bright Circle

Ben Lerner

‘Things he dreamt began to show up in the bushes, the plastic figurine from a parachute firework, the small dull rusted circular saw blade he thought of as a throwing star, and he pocketed those things.’

The Anthology

Karan Mahajan

‘Long before terrorism became fashionable in the West and commonplace in the East, there was a bombing at the Sovereign Center in Delhi.’

Lipari

Anthony Marra

‘Frank Laganà stood on the cliff suited in black, as straight as an exclamation point, poised to leap to his death once again.’

This Is Our Descent

Dinaw Mengestu

‘When it came to our son, her defensive instincts were well-developed and all the more necessary because it was hard from the outside to see why we were so protective.’

Brom

Ottessa Moshfegh

‘I stay mostly in my bedroom chambers, examining what has found its way into my pores or the mucoid crook of my eye.’

All the Caged Things

Chinelo Okparanta

‘All that thought of home gave the girl a sickly feeling, the longing of something so out of reach, something she wasn’t even sure she could any longer truly remember.’

What Terrible Thing It Was

Esmé Weijun Wang

‘Dennis with his bespectacled eyes on his phone, performing the act of emotional multitasking. While I’ve been psychotic, he’s been phone banking.’

I Love You but I’ve Chosen Darkness

Claire Vaye Watkins

‘The uncooperative cadence of the phrase my myspace page perfectly encapsulates the awkwardness of the early oughts when our story begins.’

Last Days on Corfu

Amelia Gray

A novel about the life of celebrated dancer Isadora Duncan. ‘You can feel her in every room. The chandeliers shiver.’

Borne

Jeff VanderMeer

‘The map of the old horizon was like being haunted by a grotesque fairy tale, something that when voiced came out not as words but as sounds in the aftermath of an atrocity.’

The Unmailed Letter

Kseniya Melnik

‘I was already suspicious of you before you were even born. You were Mama’s then, eating her up from the inside like a little cancer. She became yellow. She lost chunkfuls of hair.’

Drive Your Plough Over the Bones of the Dead

Olga Tokarczuk

‘They gazed at us calmly, as if we had caught them in the middle of performing some ritual whose meaning we could not fathom.’

Exit West

Mohsin Hamid

‘Everyone was foreign, and so, in a sense, no one was.’

Lincoln in the Bardo

George Saunders

‘Must I deny my predilection, and marry, and doom myself to a certain, shall we say, dearth of fulfillment?’

Qualitative Leaps

Sana Krasikov

‘Breaking your family’s heart was the price you paid for rescuing your own.’

The Secular World

Nadeem Aslam

‘There is no lack of talent in this country. All we lack is decent leaders.’ Pakistan’s secular world runs against fundamentalism in Nadeem Aslam’s latest novel, The Golden Legend.

Better Protect America

Padma Viswanathan

Padma Viswanathan on the absurdities of the US Border Patrol Agency. ‘The new security was going to be unpredictable, by design.’

On Stage

Bandi

‘Where emotions are suppressed and actions monitored, acting only becomes ubiquitous, and so convincing that we even trick ourselves.’

Matt Dillon

Michelle Tea

‘Michelle had learned a valuable lesson: Do not leave the house unless you look ready to meet Matt Dillon.’ From the novel Black Wave.

The Book of the Dead

Orikuchi Shinobu

A gothic tale of love between a noblewoman and a ghost in eighth century Japan, translated by Jeffrey Angles.

Chanel Nº 5

Victor Lodato

‘The liquid tingled, a subtle electrification, as the scent changed, bloomed, became an extension of the boy himself.’

Hilditch & Key

Carl Shuker

A Syrian refugee visits London’s oldest houses of fashion. ‘The contemplation of the perfection of a craft, worn by a man who knew its worth, and his own.’

Chekhov’s Ladies

Edna O’Brien

‘Malachi is brushing her hair, long, dark brown and with russet glints. She likes it, as he can tell from her smile in the mirror.’

Friend of My Youth

Amit Chaudhuri

‘You don’t plunge into growing up; it happens in spite of you.’

Naugahyde

Gordon Lish

A story of ageing infidelity: ‘He would seek to remember and she would seek to remember – each succeeding a little differently from the other.’

A Scale Model of Gull Point

Kate Folk

Trapped in a revolving restaurant during an American revolution, Shel VanRybroek turns to tin-foil sculpture.

The Boat

John Connell

John Connell writes of a trial and a murder during the Irish War of Independence.