The Barcelona Review. International Review of Contemporary Fiction

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Issue 74 kicks off with Stephen O’Connors White Fire in which a 26-year-old American soldier returns home from duty in one of our current wars.  It may be a familiar theme, but O’Connor’s adept handling of the first-person narrative makes it fresh, and puts us squarely in the mind of a dangerously fractured soul.

Next up is The Lion Gate by Caitlin Horrocks where a single woman on vacation in Greece meets up with a young boy of “wild red hair.”  Shirley Valentine, it’s not.  Horrocks is a marvelous story-teller, creative and unpredictable.  Reading her is pure delight.

Upcoming talent Roxane Gay is at work on a novel about a kidnapping (and the aftermath) of a Haitian American in Haiti (Things I Know About Fairytales).  What They Say About Happily Ever After is a self-contained excerpt that follows the young woman’s immediate release.  “Once upon a time, in a far off land, I was kidnapped by a gang of fearless yet terrified young men with so much impossible hope beating inside them it burned their very skin and strengthened their will right through their bones.”

 In All the Dots Are Connected, Somehow the young, Iranian student/writer Raha Namy gives us this telling rumination which runs from Roberto Bolaño to Dylan Thomas to a young boy at his computer in Tehran where he deftly uses proxies to allow him to surf the net and reach beyond the heavily imposed internet restrictions.

Under essay, it is a pleasure to have Anis Shivani’s Why is American Fiction in Its Current Dismal State?, which begins:“Contemporary fiction has become cheap counseling to the bereaved bourgeois.”  You may agree; you may disagree, but you’ll appreciate his wide grasp of the American literary scene and his intelligent argument.  To paraphrase Pope, for many readers Shivani relays What oft was thought, but ne’er so daringly express’d.

In picks from back issues, it seemed appropriate to include Roberto Bolaño’s Sensini as he figures as a connecting point in Raha Namy’s piece; and in addition, we offer the quirky and disturbing Naked With Boys by G.K. Wuori.

Two quizzes this issue!  It seemed odd we were not getting much response to last issue’s Anglo-Asian Literature.  Appears there was a glitch in the system making it unavailable for a long period, so we are running it again.  We also present our new quiz, Lit Crit 101, which is truly basic, so if you even half remember the key concepts, you’ll walk it.   A 30-euro gift certificate from Amazon goes to the winner of each quiz, so you can shoot for 60 if you go for both. 

Local News: Perhaps it had to do with Spain’s close proximity to Tunisia and Egypt, but I would like to remind everyone that the “occupation” movement kicked off right here, last May, and has never let up. There have been many mass demonstrations since then, and yesterday, in conjunction with other cities worldwide, tens of thousands of people, Los Indignados, of all social classes and ages, took to the streets once again to protest the severe austerity cuts in all the wrong places and to demand a change in the financial system and a “return to the origins of transparency and democratic participation.” The march ultimately split into 3 groups:  one, devoted to housing, ended by occupying a building with different families who have been evicted; a second set up in front of Hospital del Mar to protest cuts in health service; and third moved to the Faculty of the University of Barcelona in the Raval, which was already occupied, to protest cuts in education. A strong yet peaceful revolutionary spirit is alive and well in Barcelona!  See video.
 

Our next issue is due out in January. To be notified when new issues are available, just ‘LIKE’ The Barcelona Review on Facebook (for the Spanish, LIKE Barcelona Review without the THE); or email us to subscribe (gratis, of course), though often our bulk email is blocked from servers so we cannot guarantee a notification.

Until then, we hope you enjoy our new line-up. 

All the best from Barcelona,

Jill Adams

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