Call If You Need Me
‘I think I even used the phrase second honeymoon to the realtor, God forgive me, while Susan smoked a cigarette and read tourist brochures out in the car’.
‘I would have dreams that woke me in the middle of the night, my heart shaking inside my body.’
‘It wasn’t that he didn’t have a name, only that he was having difficulty locating it.’
Coming down from the Mountains
‘There is nothing to be heard now; just, in the darkness, the racket of the victrolas in Loma Colorada barrio, and the organ lording it over all the other noises.’
Cowboys and Angels
‘I had me a cowboy once on a hot steam Friday night.’ New fiction from Chelsea Bieker.
‘Hold to that; it is what your childish innocence once was and what your adult maturity must become.’
‘Nothing, really, Petrovich. That Georgian, you know, that foreign minister of theirs, says that half an hour ago, Himself announced at a press conference that democracy is being introduced here.’
Dick Contino’s Blues
‘June 22, 1958. Dig, hepcats: it’s me, five minutes after the fuzz told me my mother had been murdered.’
Dinner with Dr Azad
‘Six months now since she'd been sent away to London. Every morning before she opened her eyes she thought, if I were the wishing type, I know what I would wish.’
‘The method's not important. The only thing that counts is that you go along with it–and that you understand why it has to be done.’
‘There she is: Dolores. Newly named. Sitting at the kitchen table inside the convent, conscious of how bad she must smell.’
‘Seven corporations control the afterlife now, and many people spend their lives amassing the money to upload into the best.’
‘Everything bad came from the north. Whatever else they believed, the whole town, both parts of it, knew that.’
Emma Bovary’s Eyes
‘Her eyes are black: passion and depth. Her eyes are green: wildness and jealousy. Her eyes are brown: reliability and ordinariness. Her eyes are violet: the novel is by Raymond Chandler.‘
‘What am I doing in London? And what’ll I do once I’m back in India?' Amit Chaudhuri on identity, youth and nostalgia.
‘After Lena and Bob were married in the Chapel of Eternal Love, Ella told them that new husbands and wives were not allowed to share a hotel bedroom.’
Ethelbert and the Free Cheese
‘It was against the understood traditions of society to prepare Sunday lunch without macaroni pie.’ 2016 Commonwealth Short Story Prize – regional winner for the Caribbean.
Extracts From The Journal Of Flying Officer J
‘The squadron left today for the city. The mess cold and sad, Verschoyle, with uncharacteristic generosity, said I could keep the monoplane.’
‘Six feet of man, muscled up perfect, game to the heart.’ New fiction from Jeffery Renard Allen.
‘That was my first death. When the priest tossed the first three shovelfuls of clay on to the coffin, the clattering sound seemed to ring all over the hillside graveyard and my father's face moved sideways as if he had been struck.’
Field Notes on a Marriage
‘I tell myself it doesn’t do to fixate too much on the dead: apart from everything else, they can’t answer you.’
Fifty-Seven Views of Fujiyama
‘So Sora, to be worthy of the beauty of the world, shaved his head the day we departed, and donned a wandering priest’s black robe, and took yet a third name, Sogo, which means Enlightened, for the road.’
‘The court had given me six months to prove I was a responsible adult and a fit mother’.
Five Hours to Simla
‘He had his hands deep in his pockets, and his face was lined with a frown deeply embedded with dust.’
‘The second year, I noticed before anyone else that the Coelophysis was trying to escape.’
Flash at Home
‘Flash Gordon, home from the terrible emptiness of space, has to make up stories for fear of worldwide despair.’
‘She had to explain this, and the thought crossed her mind to dwell on this personal note, to put out a feeler to test Christina's reaction to the idea of sexual experiment.’