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Bruce Seymour

Bruce Seymour is a writer from New Haven, CT and owner of Another Bookstore, and independent bookseller in New Britain.

FICTION: Coming to America

Peering into window displays at Barney’s, Bergdorf Goodman, Bloomingdale’s, and Henri Bendel has, for decades, delivered countless smiles. In The Puzzle King Betsy Carter creates Simon Phelps, a display designer on par with the best Fifth Avenue has to offer.

FICTION: Tragedy with a Gentle Hand

It’s no lie, Oscar H. Bennett can write. “His brother lay on the front porch, on the old warped boards, eyes fixed on the bare bulb that hung above him. He was exposed lying there as if he were naked, because that is how it must feel when people can stare at you and you can’t stare back.”

Knife Music

Black Sharpies and bold lettering accent David Carnoy’s debut novel, Knife Music. This doctor versus detective thriller belongs on the shelf with Michael Connelly, Dennis Lehane, or Chuck Hogan. Trauma alerts, cops, and teenagers lace the narrative in a high-pressure mix of empathy, encouragement, and contempt.

FICTION: Hugs Last Too Long

Pasha Malla’s thirteen-story collection showcases a series of intimate relationships. They’re not banal boy/girl stories, but rather they play with man/woman, boy/girl, snake/boy, girl/chimp, and machine/man, among other combinations.


From Dubai to Japan to Boston to Brooklyn to Romani Gypsy grandparents, the stories in Anatolia and Other Stories (Black Lawrence) are varied and, conceptually, architected on an intriguing premise. The first story, “Dubai,” reads like a Malamud folklore legend/Flannery O’Connor hybrid.

Fiction: The Show That Smells

Mirror mazes, vampires and tuberculosis perfume Derek McCormack’s latest. It’s contemporary niche fiction leaning experimental, then waxing strange.

Tommy's Well

Everyone knows a daisy in a desert will die too soon. Tommy smiled anyway. At nine he was the solitary ward of St. Paul’s Missionary, in the atrophied village of San Tulta, Mexico.


The Brooklyn Rail

SEPT 2023

All Issues