Its characters and events, while sinister, are plausible: an uncomfortable mirror to our own world.
“There’s an our kind and a their kind.”
As per usual, Kepnes pulls out all the stops with bottomless cliffhangers and narrative-shaking revelations.
I was Indiana Jones, hanging from a rope above a pit of snakes, my moves skilled and sure. My recorder was below, begging to be rescued like whatever unrealistic female heroine Jones would fall in love with and then totally forget about by the sequel.
We’re thrilled to announce the winners and honorary mention of our 2021 Sudden Fiction Contest! Read more to find out who won!
The shortlist for our 2021 Sudden Fiction Contest is out! Read to find out what we sent our judges.
Dantiel W. Moniz’s debut story collection, Milk Blood Heat, pulsates with the everyday horrors of being alive.
Morgenstern’s work is a novel for the book lovers and the story fanatics. It is the reader’s paradise, filled with reading nooks, secret libraries, mysterious books, and attractive storytellers.
Stuart Turton’s debut novel, The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, is a book filled with surprises.
The book spins a vibrating tension between silken, lyrical imagery, and anxiety-inducing plot.
The Lumberjack’s story is attractive because it offers readers some folkloric mysticism in the time of quarantine.
Learning to Love Yourself: Review of Someone Who Will Love You In All Your Damaged Glory by Raphael Bob-Waksberg
These stories provide incisive and cutting looks into being alone in the world and grieving lost relationships.
This story entails an impressively raw and explicit depiction of David’s queer sexuality through the unconventional means of a financially and sexually beneficial relationship.
At the heart of the memoir are Bombardier’s negotiations with his gender presentation and identity throughout the years and the very idea of the “trans memoir.”
Fanfiction, and literature on the internet in general, raises new sorts of questions about the pitfalls and possibilities of archiving. How do you save not just an artifact, but all the software and hardware that is needed to run it?
This Spring, the editorial team at the Berkeley Fiction Review wanted to highlight a selection of upcoming releases that we are especially looking forward to reading and viewing. These selections mean something special to each individual editor, so we hope this list inspires an interest in these works!
A comfort book is just as the name suggests: a personally significant piece of literature, typically fiction, that brings a person solace and allows for an escape from reality.
Even so, I was disappointed to find that Mismatched had taken a narrative by an Indian-American author about Indian-American characters, with a unique premise about growing up American yet being submersed in Indian culture, and had set it entirely in India.
Mike Flanagan’s The Haunting of Bly Manor, the anthology series follow-up to the popular The Haunting of Hill House, may have all the makings for a classic ghost story, but don’t be mistaken—it’s actually a love story.
I saw myself and my sister in Merricat and Constance – two sisters from a deeply troubled family, survivors of traumatic experiences who rely on each other to make it through the day.
Crisp, icy air fills our lungs, whispering, pulling us inward into the fauna-choked landscape of Forks, Washington. Residing inside this quaint town, someone of equal brilliance: perfectly tousled hair, cold skin, brooding saunter, piercing eyes, and a slightly outdated fashion sense. Sound familiar? We’ve stepped into the glorious world of Twilight filled with fantastical vampires, bloody violence, and of course, romance.
Gradually, he grew accustomed to his alternate form, to the point that he could forget about it for hours at a time.
…she took in another breath, reminding herself of the hours she would have to spend today making forced smiles to cover her nerves, laughing anxiously to prevent herself from saying something she didn’t mean, and breathing in and out to steady her heartbeat.
I know what Venita does. I’m not stupid. She doesn’t know I know, the fragrances of her leaving and the taste of her returning.
There are two honors for women here. One is that you marry well; your husband doesn’t beat you and will hold you close at night. Two: you become a crab girl in the crab factory.
Did he think about telling me that summer, when there was nothing but us and the truck and the highway for miles? Maybe not, didn’t want to ruin it all.
Out here, she knew, was his sanctuary, away from his daughter’s problems. Here, only these more easily governed fruits of his labor existed.
You keep the bones. I learned this as a girl, cleaning after a chicken dinner.
I was just taking some time off, I told myself. From college. But more and more it felt like from life.
The little bird’s so still, just looking up at me with those robin eyes, just staring like it sees what’s deep inside me, like it’s stunned by the horror of it. I think that’s when I begin to understand: sin’s damn personal.
Something about flash fiction and short fiction is just so ripe with experimentation and with breaking boundaries and for kind of completely turning on its head what a story can look like.
A Flash of Lightning and Heartbreak: Interview with Ashley Hutson, Sudden Fiction Guest Judge & Author of One’s Company
I feel like when you write flash, you’re giving something to the reader, like an electric shock.
A Case for “the surreal and the strange”: Interview with Anna Vangala Jones, Sudden Fiction Guest Judge and Author of Turmeric & Sugar
When I picture a flash fiction story done well, a story that’s getting so much across in this tiny space, I imagine a little snow globe or something that’s bursting with how much is going on inside it.
A few weeks ago, I sat down (virtually) with short story writer Jen Fawkes to discuss her debut story collection, Mannequin and Wife: Stories. We talked about the origin of her writing career, the ocean, and her goal of capturing the spectacular mundanity of everyday life through fiction.
Read the transcript of our release party for Berkeley Fiction Review Issue 40, which took place on April 30th via Zoom!
“Spent” came like this—from a feeling, the remorse of only having one life to spend. Even if we hold love in armfuls—real love, true love, good love—there will always be a life you can’t be living, a timeline you’ve left behind.
Berlin’s writing captured a sort of reckless joy I recalled from my time in Paris: living on that rugged edge between foolish risk-taking and worthwhile adventure.
Across this textured face, I count all the bleeding and irritated spots, hooking onto them with my eyes and making sure that each and every unwanted citizen of a pimple on the once-clear expanse of my face is ingrained in my mind.
The Unseen World grapples with this abstract notion: if memories are the fundamental building blocks to a coherent identity, when one loses these memories or memories are distorted —who does this person become? Who are they in relation to you?
“I….have been able to use reading as both a reprieve from reality, as well as an educational tool to become a more productive version of my isolated self.”
Step 1: Once you are roused from slumber by thoughts of the monumental task at hand, brew some coffee. If you don’t drink coffee, thoughtfully bob a bag of tea into a cup of microwaved water. Optional: Add alcohol to taste.
The Academy Award for Best Picture — arguably one of the most monetarily valuable honors given anywhere in the world, a fact which is itself absurd — was recently bestowed upon the wrong film.
Berkeley Fiction Review
c/o ASUC Student Union FMO
432 Eshleman, MC 4500
Berkeley, CA 94720
General / Submissions: