An absurdist short story about a Union doctor—which many Atlantic readers erroneously believed at the time to be nonfiction.
Set in a wartime hospital, a short story about a family with a poisonous secret
A young couple is parted by Civil War in an early short story by the 21-year-old Henry James
As soon as his book was published, Antonio realized that the pure vision of him that only she harbored would be shattered— and that he would do anything to keep her from reading it.
Marla had felt she’d never really had a sister, that she’d been visited by some strange goblin or ghost. But then she went into Daddy’s bank vault after he died.
The old Bohemian hadn’t come to disturb the family on Holy Night, only to deliver an enormous, misshapen gift.
His parents were separating, but all Sam could think about was preparing for nuclear holocaust.
“I don’t want any more surgeries. I just want a little art to help, to make it look a little less deformed. You know?”
All this—the dust, the tarantulas, the deaths—had not come naturally. “We’ve used the land wrong,” I once heard a farmer say while I spied on my father and his Communist friends.
Veblen’s first desire had been to spring the news of her engagement on her mother. Nothing with her mother was ever simple and straightforward— and that was the thrill of it.
Isa couldn’t wait to leave the Philippines. But when we pull into an American town of foggy streets and gray, concrete houses, she looks confused, then panicked.
“I knew that all the things we’d gathered there so many years would be scattered and gone. All that had held it together would come apart and be gone as if it never was.”
Howell was never caught. He lent a certain grace to his grift, even value to whatever he grabbed. The widows never felt cheated. They remembered the dark-haired stranger who drifted into their lives and made love to them like some Manhattan sheik. But Howell had little to do with Manhattan. He was from the Bronx. And because of his own odd chivalry, that ceiling he put on whatever he stole, Howell never grew rich.
Paiko had been waiting for his girlfriend to have sex with her last client when the police raided the brothel. “You will soon be released,” the Sergeant had kept telling him. So why was he now standing before the President and Commander in Chief of the Jungle Republic, the kangaroo court in Area F, which had “the worst torture chamber in the whole of this country”? And could the power of his storytelling save him?
I’d become obsessed with my Neighborhood Watch duties, and my wife had taken up with Bob Martin. What bothers me is not the thought of Bob kissing my wife’s neck, or the thought of Bob putting my kids on his shoulders somewhere in Missouri, or that the Martin place has gone to hell under my watch. What bothers me, and repeatedly plays over in my mind, is the morning my wife left.
The place where we are joined is a secret place for Hattie and me, especially since everyone always wants to look at it—a bone hinge covered in smooth skin, our spines locked together at the base. Lately, though, Hattie hates our hinge. She has fallen in love with Matthew, and he has proposed to her.
He had become used to the way Marc turned questions around. His son was like Superman in that way, catching bullets in his hand and redirecting them. His own father had never answered his questions. He was not sure which was worse, to be mocked or to be ignored.
The man next to my father at the bar winked shyly at me. I had seen this man before. His name was Russell. He wasn’t a member of our club, but he and my father were friendly. He was a former Army officer, and he restored classic cars. “He’s unstoppable,” my father often said. “That man’s unstoppable.”
Neal had believed all the myths about hyenas. He believed they were cowards until he saw them fight, scavengers until he saw them kill; and after the first time they cornered him in the Jeep, he began to take more notice of the local stories: their big-eyed curiosity, their unnerving persistence, the relative ease with which they let themselves into gated villages.