Occult

Piper J. Daniels: Ladies Lazarus

“Piper J. Daniels is going to rip the essay world apart. She’s the kind of writer who buries herself, lives among the dead, then comes to life again to levitate in the stormy air. Ladies Lazarus is the best debut I’ve read in a long time. Daniels has resurrected the personal essay and what it is and what it can do” (Jenny Boully); “An extremely intelligent, impressively understated, and achingly powerful work” (David Shields); “A siren song from planet woman, a love letter from the body, a resistance narrative against the dark” (Lidia Yuknavitch).

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Kim Parko: The Grotesque Child

The Grotesque Child is a story about being and being and being something else. It is about swallowing and regurgitating, conceiving and birthing. It is about orifices and orbs. It is about the viscous, weepy, goopy, mucousy, bloody state of feminine being and trans-being. It is about pain and various healers and torturers, soothers and inflictors. It is about what sleeps and hides in all the nooks and crannies of perceived existence and existence unperceived.

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Johannes Goransson: The Sugar Book

“Doubling down on his trademark misanthropic imagery amid a pageantry of the unpleasant” (PUBLISHERS WEEKLY); “Göransson is certainly of the Left, but his work is as savagely anti-idealist as Burroughs or Guyotat or Ballard.” (ENTROPY MAGAZINE); “Language smeared with bodily fluid and sex, language spackled with violence and death … inhabiting that glittering/grotesque duality of Kardashian Family and Manson Family” (AMERICAN MICROREVIEWS).

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Claire Donato: Burial

Set in the mind of a narrator who is grieving the loss of her father, who conflates her motel room with the morgue, and who encounters characters that may not exist, Claire Donato’s Burial is a little novel about an immeasurable black hole. “dark, multivalent, genre-bending … unrelenting, grotesque beauty” (PUBLISHERS WEEKLY “BEST SUMMER READS”) “Unforgettable” (HEATHER CHRISTLE); “Precise urn-like prose … with the poise of Woolf or Loy or Carson” (BLAKE BUTLER); “shimmers with pain and delight” (BRIAN EVENSON); “Donato’s assured and poetic debut augurs a promising career” (BENJAMIN MOSER).

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Joyelle McSweeney: Salamandrine: 8 Gothics

A collection of short stories by Joyelle McSweeney, refracting the dread and isolation of contemporary life through a series of formal/generic lenses, producing a distorted, attenuated, spasmatic experience of time, as accompanies motherhood; making impossible any thinking in terms of conventional temporalities or even causalities, let alone their narrative effects. “McSweeney’s breakneck prose harnesses the throbbing pulse of language itself.” (PUBLISHERS WEEKLY); “sexy teleological apocrypha of motherhood literature, a siren song for those mothers ‘with no soul to photograph'” (BROOKLYN RAIL); “These words ring and richochet like tinnitus in your ears” (QUARTERLY WEST); “One would not make love to a Salamandrine during a sandstorm” (ALEISTER CROWLEY)

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david wolach: Hospitalogy

“An extraordinary work that takes us into the complex guts of the ‘hospital-hotel complex.’ Here the body rebels, redacts, pulls, and sings between patient and patient. wolach performs a radical somatics, procedural anatomic work, queer narrativity.'” (ERICA KAUFMAN); “The strange tearing apart held inside that holds you inside, singing static and shrapnel…. Dear ‘jesus of the pain.’ Welcome to david wolach’s beautiful corrosion.” (FRED MOTEN); “holds the space of the clinic we don’t yet have, the dark we need, the chronic we might dream rather than undergo.” (ELENI STECOPOULOS); “documents the soft rebellion of staying alive, articulating the transition from invisibility to indecipherability.” (FRANK SHERLOCK)

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Johannes Goransson: Haute Surveillance

“[A] feverish and explicit set of images and ideas revolving around power, fetish, porn, media, violence, translation, punishment, performance, and aesthetics….. kind of like a novelization of a movie about the production of a play based on Abu Ghraib, though with way more starlets and cocaine and semen.” (BLAKE BUTLER, VICE); “part epic poem, part science fiction, part pornographic film, and all literature” (JOHN YAU, HYPERALLERGIC); “so filled with invention and wit and ferocity that I was compelled to read it, at times against my will, mesmerized, enthralled. (CAROLE MASO)

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Johannes Goransson: Entrance to a colonial pageant in which we all begin to intricate

“I don’t know where else you could contract the plague in these words but by ten TVs at once. On the TVs play: Salo, the weather channel, 2x Fassbinder (any), Family Double Dare, ads for ground beef, blurry surgical recordings, porno, porno, Anger (all)…. You’ll need a machine gun and a body double…. Burroughs and Genet and ‘Pac are dead. Long live Goransson” (BLAKE BUTLER); “a discomfiting, filthy, hilarious, and ecstatic piece of literature that is cocked and ready” (BOOKSLUT); “Page after page begins to infect the reader, begins to parasite the reader as host, parasite the host’s inner child … before immolating the host, the reader” (PANK MAG); “a pile up of sequined things and fleshy things…. The audience is often implicated. After all, torture and interrogation is not borne out of individual will and action alone…. All aboard” (HTML GIANT)

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Kim Gek Lin Short: The Bugging Watch and Other Exhibits

The Bugging Watch & Other Exhibits is the prose elegy of a boy who wants to be a bug in order to save by symbiosis the dead girl he loves. Enacted in prose poems and cross-referenced datebooks, the inseparable lovers eternally rehearse for a real life together, repeating in that instant between being and nonbeing, the loss into which their love escaped. “beguiling and entirely enthralling” (ART + CULTURE); “An opiate trip . . . terrifying, ungraspable . . . sad and beautiful” (NEW PAGES); “Irresistible!” (NORMA COLE); “Do not read this book at night” (BHANU KAPIL); “This small unsettling book . . . both conceals and reveals its morbidity, its twisted thirsts” (JOYELLE MCSWEENEY); “Valentines . . . cut from thick, mealy-colored childhood stock. Here is language as enchantment” (SELAH SATERSTROM)

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