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25

TUESDAY

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When local scribes Julia Slavin and Matthew Klam read from their short-story collections tonight, most in attendance will be there to bask in the glow of the much-ballyhooed Klam. But here’s the delicious twist: Although Klam is good, Slavin is flat-out better. A winner of both the Pushcart Prize and GQ’s 1999 Frederick Exley Fiction Competition, Slavin blends pure human emotions with bizarre fantastical flourishes. In the sublimely devilish “Swallowed Whole,” from the new The Woman Who Cut Off Her Leg at the Maidstone Club and Other Stories, an unhappy woman devours the hunky teen mowing her lawn: “I sucked his tongue harder and he started to moan because I was hurting him, but that just made me suck harder….He started to scream. His mouth was wide open, his eyes looked like they were going to bug out of his head, his tongue hit my uvula and I sucked him down my throat.” Demand to hear the supacreepy “Dentaphilia,” too, when Slavin and Klam read from their books at 7:30 p.m. at Borders, 5871 Crossroads Center Way, Baileys Crossroads. Free. (703) 998-0404. (Sean Daly)