Skip to content

Keywords

Articles tagged "Crime"

Amir

This one’s family, Amir would say with a hand on my shoulder, his fingers large and heavy but kind. The other person would look at me, then look at him, then smile slightly before putting out his hand and saying it was a real pleasure to meet any relative of Amir’s. Later, when they knew each other better, Amir would explain to the person that he was actually my stepfather, that’s why we didn’t look alike. But that’s how Amir was, not overly careful when it...

from “The All-Rounder”

Wednesday At about three Farwick leaves the office building at one end of the market place. Just outside the door he stops. Is it warm or isn’t it? He’s carrying his light summer coat over his arm. Middle of May, which means one never knows quite what to do. Sometimes he finds it hard to make simple decisions. The office building has only been completed recently. It caused quite a stir. Sixty years after the end of the war a break with historical building styles;...

Blizzard in the Jungle

Image description

Womb

My name is Nagari. Thirty years of age. There is no need to explain; I understand. . . . That evening, after my bath, my hair still wet, I heard a pounding on the door of my rented room. Three men had come to pick me up. From the sight of the jeep waiting out front; from the low hum of its engine, as light as the evening air; and from their voices,  polite but firm, I knew what was happening. The three men took me to a cold building with slippery  floors. A long corridor...

White Christmas

It was the night before Christmas Eve. The clock had just struck midnight, and a thick blanket of damp air hung over Villaggio Coppola. The towering cement buildings, crowded as beehives, were barely visible, and the murmur of the sea reigned over an otherwise tomblike silence. But every so often, the pop of a firecracker or the roar of an engine broke the calm in the streets. The schoolteacher Antonio Castrese, leaning against the windowpane, concluded that this was no longer a...

Justice Unbalanced

One night, many years ago, I was strolling with a friend on the terrace of the São Pedro de Alcântara Theater. It was between the second and third acts of the play The Sentence, or The Tribunal of the Jury. All I remember is the title, and it was precisely the title that brought us to talk about an institution, and for my friend to tell a tale that I have never forgotten. *** I've always been opposed to juries (my friend said). Not because of the institution in...

from “Metro”

Image description

The Trial of Jean-Marie Le Pen

By the time it starts the Blistier trial has already been known for months as "the trial of Jean-Marie Le Pen." Civil rights groups were the first to call it that, but by now the phrase, borne along on waves of public indignation, is showing up in all the headlines. Shouldn't the leader of the National Front be held responsible for the murder committed by one of his brainwashed teenaged supporters? Shouldn't Le Pen appear before the court, at least as a witness? Pierre Mine is...

The Man Who Killed the Writer

First things first: I didn't write the book everyone thinks I wrote, the one that has been showering me with fame and riches since its publication, just over one year go. Although many people might find that strange—while others might say, I knew it, he never fooled me—the work was entirely finished when I found it, scattered in scrawls all over the walls of an apartment just like my own: all I did was edit it. They Kill Writers, Don't They? was written by a fellow...

The Not-So-Perfect Crime

My brother Borja's name isn't Borja. It's Pep (or Josep). And his surname isn't Masdéu Canals Sáez de Astorga. We're both Martínez on our father's side and Estivill on our mother's. Unlike Borja (I mean, Pep), I've kept the name and surnames my parents christened me with: a humble Eduard (though still a Spanish Eduardo on my ID card) Martínez Estivill. On the other hand, my brother's (or at least the one he prefers to...

Calligraphy Lesson

Translator's Note: Like much of Mikhail Shishkin's writing, "Calligraphy Lesson" is highly allusive and attentive to the formal qualities of a story both inventively told and steeped in Russian atmospherics. The reader will want to be aware of two issues in particular. First, what the English reader may not realize—but the Russian will pick up instantly—is that the various women's names refer to characters from Russian classics: Sofia Pavlovna from...

Tweety

A faint sound emerged from the night; or maybe it was an almost imperceptible smell that drifted out of the darkness, soothing somehow, like the smell that comes off of boats and wet wooden docks, and though Tweety didn't grasp it intellectually, he felt how it affected him. It very nearly discharged something inside him, opened it up like a jammed valve in the back of his mind, and all at once he realized that he still had the power. It positively teemed inside him, especially in...

from Essence

Image description

The House Loses

Terrales was founded by improvident people, who found themselves without fuel in the mountains, and had no wish to return on foot to the desert suns. The sole meeting place (though it would be more precise to call it a "passing point") was a ramshackle hut where the drivers would gather and play poker. For some reason that no one recalled, they also came to ascribe the name "Terrales" to the three of aces. Those hands of cards always seemed to bring bad luck. Radio held up his three...

A Hard-boiled Story

He'd loused it up, that was for sure! As head of security he'd been in charge of the deal. The fact that the Russians' lead containers held not plutonium but a scribbled note saying, "Kiss my ass! You Nazi Hitlers are all as dumb as shit!" along with two chopped-off pig's balls was neither here nor there. After all, his own men's cases had contained toilet paper instead of cash. The entire deal had been a joke, although a joke with a deadly punchline for two of the...

from Havana Black

"And get here quick!" he screamed at a sky that seemed languid and becalmed, as if still painted from October's deceptive palette of blue: he screamed, arms crossed, chest bare, bellowing a desperate plea with every ounce of strength his lungs could muster, so his voice would carry and also to check that his voice still existed after three days without uttering a single word. Punished by cigarettes and alcohol, his throat at last felt the relief of creation, and his spirit thrived...

from End of the World in Breslau

Breslau Monday, November 28th 9:00 a.m. Kurt Smolorz, a sergeant in the Criminal Unit, was one of the best officers of the Breslau Police Department. His brutality was reviled by criminals, while the laconic brevity of his reports drew praise from his superiors. However, one of these superiors valued another of Smolorz's qualities above all else: his perspicacity. This morning, Smolorz had revealed the trait in a striking manner, twice. The first time was when he had entered...

from Night Bus

Thursday, 1 April 1993, 7:30 p.m.- Friday, 2 April 1993, 2:30 a.m. Hearts do not grieve and can suffer Hour by hour, even for an entire life, Without any of us ever knowing, With too much certainty, what is happening. --Camilo José Cela, La Colmena In the parabolic mirror, he sees the silhouette advancing. He holds his breath. Then the man takes another step, and Francesco breathes again, relaxing his shoulders. For an instant, he was afraid it was the Bear. But though the...

from A Walk in the Dark

1 You never quit smoking. You give up for a while. Days, months, years. But you never quit completely. Cigarettes are always there, lying in wait. Sometimes they appear in the middle of a dream, even five or ten years after you've "quit." You feel the touch of the paper on your fingers, you hear the soft, dull, reassuring noise it makes when you tap it on your desk, you feel the touch of the ochre filter on your lips, you hear the scrape of the match and you see the yellow flame...

from “The Fourth Take”

As he was hastily and wearily glancing through the window at Gare du Nord, Michel felt as if he recalled Christophe's face at least twice a minute. Christophe's face was big and long, slow and thoughtful; but above all it was pale, pale as if Brussels had suddenly leaned inside through the window and spread all the fog from its bosom along his features. They were sitting in Christophe's flat somewhere in the vicinity of the Southern railway station. Christophe's mouth was...

“Villon and I,” from “Territoires d’Outre-Ville”

The ties between Arab youth and the law bring to mind, in many ways, a nineteenth-century novel. For a long time I was fragile, yet in the pervasive delinquency around me, I seemed driven by some borrowed force. Invariably, the ghetto child's first act of revolt is to commit an offence. Poverty, that traditional proletarian sickness, dictates every action. Therein lie the roots of begging, of thieving. I recall being hungry the way a grown man is hungry in the streets of this country. I...

from “The Last Wager: A Detective Novel”

Abdelilah Hamdouchi's The Last Wager takes place in modern-day Casablanca. Othman is an unemployed thirty-two-year-old Moroccan married to a wealthy seventy-three-year-old French woman, Sofia, who owns a restaurant in an affluent part of town. Just before this scene, Othman has a rendezvous with his beautiful young mistress, who tells him she has run out of patience waiting for his marriage to end. Here, Detective Alwaar is called to a crime scene in the middle of the night. When he...

from “The Black Minutes”

Up until now, the most important nightmare I've had in my life I had when I was traveling by bus on a highway lined by pines. I haven't been able to decipher its meaning, at least, not entirely. It was nighttime, but I couldn't sleep. Every time I started to nod off, the headlights of cars coming from the opposite direction or the jolting of the bus jarred me awake. I knew I was finally asleep when I no longer heard the engine's drone and the oncoming headlights turned...

from “REX”

TRANSLATOR'S NOTE: Jose Manuel Prieto's Rex is a novel like none other. Its epigraph, from Bishop Berkeley, "Things are what they appear to be," is the first of many indications that things are not what they appear to be. The storyline might sound like the plot of a thriller: the narrator, a young, Spanish and Russian-speaking man, arrives at the home of a superrich Russian couple living on the Costa Brava, near Marbella, in Spain. He has been hired as a tutor to their young son,...

The Toughest Guy in Utouf

As evening fell, Boss Bayumi al-Fawwal left the Husseiniya Police Station clutching a "caution against vagrancy," his chest about to explode with exasperation and rage. He frothed and foamed as he muttered and snarled until the sounds built up into a shrill crescendo, crude and incomprehensible. The gathering roar grew louder and higher the further he drew away from the scene of his humiliation, gradually turning into curses, insults and sheer defamation--all screamed at the top of his...

Page 1 of 2 pages  1 2 > 

Like what you read? Help WWB bring you the best new writing from around the world.