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issue 21


The Barcelona Review. Fiction from Steve Aylett, Charles D'Ambrosio, Alicia Erian and others


Steve Aylett
Atom and Drowner

Charles D'Ambrosio
Her Real Name

Alicia Erian
When Animals Attack

Jim Grimsley

Matt Leibel
Columbus Day

Anthony Neil Smith
Everyone Grieves in a Unique Way

Paul A.Toth
Psychologically Ultimate Seashore

Poetry Special

RealAudio readings from international poets appearing at the December Proposta Festival in Barcelona. See below.

"Sanity’s a virginity of the mind, baby." So says private dick Taffy Atom in Steve Aylett's newly released novel Atom. If you’re new to the U.K’s absurdist, cyber-crime noir wonder boy, or been itching for more as we have, then you’re in for a cool and zany romp, back in Beerlight, "a city that sprawls like roadkill," where the City Brain Facility has just been blown up, taking with it the brain of Tony Curtis and countless others. Chapter One, presented here, is a nicely self-contained intro, so adjust your headgear and plug in. Back in the here and now, we have Charles D’Ambrosio’s "Her Real Name" - a short story that quietly appeared a few years ago (albeit to much critical acclaim) in D’Ambrosio’s stunning collection The Point. This is one of those rare stories that burns deep into the psyche, one that will stay with you forever. I have included this story in my contemporary American literature class and it has never failed to move the students and incite lively discussion while saying something new to me, too: proof that the traditional short story can be a viable source of literary wonder and invention.

Alicia Erian (New York) wowed us with her short story "When Animals Attack," which will appear next spring in her first collection The Brutal Language of Love. It’s delightful, amusing and clearly marks the beginning of a major new talent. Jim Grimsley (Atlanta, Georgia) Winter Birds, My Drowning, etc. has long been one of TBR’s favorite novelists and so it is with much pleasure that we present his short story "Boulevard" which first appeared in this year’s Men on Men anthology of new gay writing.

TBR is also pleased to present three new writers, all from the U.S., whose submissions impressed us with their originality and vivid voices: Matt Leibel, Paul A.Toth and Anthony Neil Smith. In their differing styles and techniques, each writer shows a high regard for language and a confidence in handling the narrative.


Our Catalan site is featuring some international poets in RealAudio that you will find of interest:

Américo Rodrigues (Portugal)
Jaap Blonk (Holland) + visual
Endre Szkárosi (Hungary)
Bartomeu Ferrando (Catalunya)

...not all in English, with parts in non-language verbal sounds, and all quite entertaining.  
Be sure to have a listen!
For a sound-only taster of
Rodrigues, click here


Our "Pick from Back Issues" - especially plucked from our ever-growing archive of contemporary classics, which we encourage you to peruse at your leisure - is Jason Starr’s "Bianca’s Wallet". Jason has published two original and well-received crime-noir novels, but if his name is new to you, you may wish to check out this short story for a taster. We have a Christmas story for you too: Deirdre Heddon’s "Still Life".

Our Quiz this issue is a genre-themed Gothic/Horror Fiction Quiz, compiled by Sara Martin, professor at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Know who wrote the first vampire tale in English? If so, you’re on your way. Winner receives a free book of choice within the Gothic/Horror genre. The winner of last issue’s Harry Crews Quiz is Jim Strachan of British Columbia, who wrote: "I'd only heard peripherally of Harry Crews, and thanks to you and your quiz I'm in the process of reading his entire corpus, working on novel number 7." He wrote of the difficulty of locating a couple earlier novels, but he did it. . . so big congratulations to Jim from us all. And thanks to the many people who participated and came very close.

Our next issue is due out some time around the second week of January. It is difficult to give an exact date, and we apologize for having done so this issue only to appear a few days late. The best way to know exactly when a new issue is available is to subscribe, and we can inform you every two months when our latest edition is on-line. It’s all for free and your name will not be used for any other purpose.

See you again in 2001. Good reading to all.

Jill Adams

Jill Adams, editor

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For more information about the BR, conditions, etc. please see BR info. For submission information please read our guidelines. If you would like to be informed when  new issues are available, you can subscribe - all for free - by sending a blank e-m@il to the BR with "Subscribe" or  "¿Qué pasa?" in the  Subject box and leave the message part blank. Your name will not be used for any other purpose.  For any other comments/questions, please use a different Subject title.

Remember to check out our past issues...

Over three year's worth of short fiction, plays & interviews from such diverse talents as Douglas Coupland, Irvine Welsh, Pinckney Benedict, G.K. Wuori, Scott Heim, A.M. Homes, Alan Warner, Poppy Z. Brite, Laura Hird, Elissa Wald, Jason Starr, Brian Evenson and new kids on the Net like William Cuthbertson, Aimee Krajewski, Jean Kusina, David Alexander, Lenny T and Victor Saunders.

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