The shortest tale can leave the longest impression. Devourings collects a variety of stories – each its own piece but bound to the next by a broader, unifying theme: being enveloped, devoured, by a moment, an encounter, a political situation, an emotion – which connect with absolute potency. Be they over a handful of paragraphs or a spread of pages, these short – and shorter – stories linger with a palpable resonance.

Devourings travels to many destinations, encompassing several scenarios and introducing myriad protagonists – and, frequently, antagonists. ‘Esthers’ follows a snaking murder plot set in 1940s Argentina; the malevolent machinations of ‘USS Passumpsic’ play out on a late-1950s Pacific. ‘The Lamb Opened The Fox’s Throat’ takes place in a fantastical ancient Arabia, a place of magic and little mercy. Geographically and chronologically divergent dramas are connected by a consistent, compelling tone.

Between the lines of dialogue: heat, dirt, desperation, realisation. Although imagined, these stories are sculpted as much by their stage as their players, landscape as significant a character as those who rise and fall before it. So the detail is always relevant: the texture of a city wall, the smell of the soil, the sweat cutting a strike across grimy skin. Mystery and myth, religion and science, war and love: the dramas’ cues come manifold. They each conclude consumed.

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