From The Guardian:
In his novel A Disorder Peculiar to the Country, published today by Simon & Schuster, Ken Kalfus has produced perhaps the most penetrating response to September 11 and its aftermath to date: a satire on the psychological and domestic effects of the current state of perpetual conflict. The terrible events of the day and the subsequent war on terror are seen through the eyes of Marshall and Joyce, a New York couple in the throes of divorce. To their mutual regret, both survive the attacks on the city, but as the months pass, and events at home begin to echo those on the international stage, it seems unlikely that they will be as fortunate when it comes to the battle of their separation. In this exclusive extract from the opening of the novel, the city looks on in horror as the twin towers collapse.
“After a while one of the towers, the one further south, appeared to exhale a terrific sigh of combustion products. They swirled away and half the building, about fifty or sixty stories, bowed forward on a newly manufactured hinge. And then the building fell in on itself in what seemed to be a single graceful motion, as if its solidity had been a mirage, as if the structure had been liquid all these years since it was built. Smoke and debris in all the possible shades of black, gray and white billowed upward, flooding out around the neighboring buildings. You had to make an effort to keep before you the thought that thousands of people were losing their lives at precisely this moment.”