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What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves Us

The stories in Laura van den Berg’s rich and inventive debut illuminate the intersection of the mythic and the mundane: A failed actress takes a job as a Bigfoot impersonator. A botanist seeking a rare flower crosses paths with a group of men hunting the Loch Ness Monster. A disillusioned missionary in Africa grapples with grief and a growing obsession with a creature rumored to live in the forests of the Congo. And in the title story, a young woman traveling with her scientist mother in Madagascar confronts her burgeoning sexuality and her dream of becoming a long-distance swimmer. Rendered with precision and longing, the women who narrate these starkly beautiful stories are consumed with searching—for absolution, for solace, for the flash of extraordinary in the ordinary that will forever alter their lives.

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