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Working Titles Excerpts

The Keepers of the Ghost Bird (Working Title 2.4)

- By Jenn Dean

 

The Massachusetts Review presents the latest Working Titles e-book: THE KEEPERS OF THE GHOST BIRD by Jenn Dean—available this week!

From THE KEEPERS OF THE GHOST BIRD:

From the air, Bermuda resembles a jeweled and pregnant seahorse, hanging by its tail from the Sargasso Sea. Its top and bottom wrap around two ancient volcanic calderas, one at Castle Harbor and one at Dockyards. In between, Bermuda’s twenty-one square miles twine along a fragile, curving spine of limestone. From a taxi van, the coastline uncurls past the windows: the rose sand, the bitter green foliage of tamarisk trees, stunted windblown evergreens, and the blue southern tip of the Sea.

Beneath the water,...


Working Titles Excerpts

The Leader (Working Title 2.3)

- By Nouri Zarrugh

 

The Massachusetts Review presents the latest Working Titles e-book: “THE LEADER by Nouri Zarrugh-–available this week!

From THE LEADER:

That last February before the war and the hard years that were to follow it, forty-one years after the Leader’s revolution, Laila woke to the sound of explosions in the street. She sat clutching the blanket, eyes darting, half expecting to find herself buried in dust and rubble, her vision slowly adjusting to the familiar sight of the armoire and the floral cushions piled beside it, the matching nightstand and the ceramic lamp and on the other side of them, undisturbed, the sheets tucked and folded, Hajj Yunus’s empty bed, glowing in the faint...


Working Titles Excerpts

Emergency Exit (Working Titles 1.4) Excerpt

- By Carissa Halston

 

From Emergency Exit:

Months 5–19

The Stewardess was out of control. She was told when to speak, what to say, what to wear, when to change it, how to stand, where to sit, and how to serve. But she decided whom to service. And she decided how. Four passengers: two men, two women. Always in the lavs, always inflight, always all the way. And once they’d landed in postcoital waters, the Stewardess laid down the rules.

First, an agreement. The Stewardess would leave first. Second, the prevention of discovery. The Stewardess would hang an out of order sign on the door to the lav. Third, an understanding. No acknowledgment and no repeat performances. Fourth—and finally—a handshake. It was official. It was professional. It was the...


Working Titles Excerpts

Strange Mercies (Working Title 1.5)

- By Pete Duval

 

From STRANGE MERCIES

It’s terrible the way that prayer is answered.  —Graham Greene, The Heart of the Matter

THE MORE MAYHEW pretended to pray, the more he began to doubt the project of documentation, and yet the spectacle of what he’d already videotaped seemed fully real only now, the images wavering with unstable pixilation in the low light of his room. In one clip, the blood runs in streaks that snake from triangular wounds at the woman’s palms upward along her wrists and forearms, as though she has held her hands slightly raised and out to the sides long enough for it to dry. Mayhew’s neck ached as he sucked the last lozenge of ice from his rum...


Working Titles Excerpts

Just Another Jihadi Jane (Working Titles 1.6)

- By Tabish Khair

 

The Massachusetts Review presents the sixth Working Titles e-book:
Just Another Jihadi Jane: A Novel Excerpt by Tabish Khair—available now!  

From Just Another Jihadi Jane:

DON’T ASK ME for too many details. The devil is in the details, they say. Well, the police are there too, and the antiterror squad. There is death in the details, and there is guilt, crime, and persecution. Details leave scars; they call for vengeance. No, I won’t give you too many details. I will give you names of places and people, but seldom the exact ones. Like it or not; make what you can of what I say⎯for you are a writer, and I will leave this story in your...


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