Vietnam has chosen August 10—the day that the US began spraying Agent Orange on Vietnam—as Agent Orange Day, to commemorate all its citizens who were affected by the deadly chemical. In their honor, here is an excerpt from Fred Wilcox's Waiting for an Army to Die, the first major account the terrible effects of Agent Orange.
A week-long sale and a note from our publisher on a new bookseller initiative. Check out seven award-winning titles from our Women in Translation series, all at 35% off through August 8th. Free shipping within the U.S.!
"But the bohemian narrative needed tweaking, as the old East Village went on dying. So I fudged together a grandiose tale of survival. I was the Last of the Mohicans, I told myself (“aha!”), citing the opening on Avenue A of the gourmet delicatessen Gracefully in 1999 as proof that our values were under attack by capitalism. I, descendant of Richard Hell, was to hold a valiant last stand before the neighborhood surrendered its anarcho-populism to commercial hegemony. Then, having decided my time was up, I would flee to the Upper East Side (I did just that), now the token artist moonlighting as an ironic has-been, raconteur to starchy lawyers and doctors. I would tell myself and everyone else that I’d been part of something real, something raw, something so unlike the preppy invasion, something no algorithm could ever predict, something unannounced."
Carlos Dengler writes about gentrification, social conscience, and more.
Today we celebrate what would be the 71st birthday of the late Octavia Butler, a pioneer in the world of science fiction, with "The Book of Martha," a short story from Bloodchild.
In this story, Butler works through her lack of belief in the possibility of a universally appealing utopia with humor and careful consideration. God summons Martha Bes to effectively ameliorate the conditions of humanity. As a result of the exchange, Martha settles on an original plan to satisfy God's seemingly impossible challenge.
PS: Enter to win a free copy of Bloodchild here, and take 50% off Parable of the Sower and Parable of the Talents through Saturday June 23, 11:59 PM.