Monthly Archives: July 2020

Pale: A Novel, Edward A. Farmer

“It was during that hot stretch of summer that Miss Lula fell victim to the strangest sickness I’d ever seen on a person, as in an instant she had gone from her normal position beside the curtained window with her needlework in her lap to one of pure anguish, doubled over on the floor. It had been only minutes since I’d checked on her when her cries rang out, as delicate as the mouse whose squeaks we’d hear echo throughout the halls at night.”

Into the Suffering City: A Novel of Baltimore, Bill LeFurgy

“Just another day in Baltimore,” said the medical examiner, whose gray handlebar mustache dominated his gaunt face. “Shaw and the rest of those damn politician have let our city become a playground for fallen women. Every slattern south of the New York has flocked here to make dirty dollar.” He shot a sharp look at the scribbling male attendant. “Don’t put that in the notes.”

The Gone Dead, Chanelle Benz

“It is not exactly as she was picturing, the house where her father once lived. But she remembers it or feels like she does. She puts the car back in gear and turns off the main road, bumping down the gravel drive toward it. Billie parks and Rufus pops up in the back, his head veering between the driver and passenger seats, nosing her arm. Her hands stretch across the top of the wheel, palms thick and tingling from the long drive. She gets out and opens the back door. The dog bounds to the front porch, sniffs, and pees on the corner of the battered wooden steps. “Thanks,” she says as he gallops across the overgrown yard.”

Lost in Oaxaca, Jessica Winters Mireles

“This is definitely not the Mexico she’s seen splashed across the glossy pages of her mother’s travel magazines. Here, there are no turquoise bays or white sand beaches, no five-star hotels with infinity pools that disappear in the ocean. There is only the monsoonal rain, the buzz of mosquitoes, and the accordion music playing from the tinny speakers at the front of the bus. And this humidity!”

So Are You to my Thoughts, Connie Kronlokken

“Above them, the manzanita and eucalyptus bent in the evening convection wind. Being outdoors was a celebration of the uneven, thought Marty. The rich variations of color and textures of multiple layers of dry leaves and stones. A yellow leaf drifted down into her pile of beans. Seagulls wheeled and called nearby. A piece of wood leapt musically off the chopping block.”

Side by Side but Never Face to Face: A Novella & Stories, Maggie Kast

“Hot, blue sky wheeled around, and the crashing sound of metal on stone faded into silence. Where was he—and who? He seemed to be lying on his side. Drops of moisture crawled across his forehead, and the sun beat hard on his shoulder and back. He raised his head to see if it would hurt. “Are you on top of me?” A voice from below him, then running footsteps and excited, shouting voices with Caribbean accents. The world rocked back and forth, then heaved around, and his two hundred pounds fell back behind that goddamned steering wheel on the wrong side of the car.”