Its hard to find historical fiction that accurately captures the worldview and mindset of the people depictedand exceedingly rare to encounter characters whose lives and thoughts feel expansive, rather than subtractive, in the remote past. Croatian writer Robert Periićs latest novel, A Cat at the End of the World, transports the reader to ancient Syracuse, and then to a colonial outpost in the Adriatic. The protagonist Kalia, servant to a wealthy family and object of torment by the scion Pigras, is accompanied by a cat named Miu and shown the first glimmer of care by a woman named Menda. In this excerpt, Periić shows how a cat's ungovernability can undo a hierarchy.
Ecuadorian writer Gabriela Ponces English language debut features an unnamed woman wrestling with the consequences of a failed marriage and an all consuming affair. Told in a stream of consciousness style that Book Culture describes as like putting Viriginia Woolf and Ottessa Moshfegh in a blender, Blood Red is a raw, visceral exploration of female bodily autonomy, power, and vulnerability.