The stories in Chris Tarry’s debut story collection, How To Carry Bigfoot Home (Red Hen Press, March 2015) examine the frailty of the human experience. From an out-of-work dragon-slaying father, to a family arguing aboard a rocketship that’s about to be launched into space, the stories in this collection use unique settings and humor to explore very human truths.
Everyone has their own personal monsters, problems that are carried home and laid bare for the people we love most. There is the public self and the private heart, the way we are and the way we wish to be. How To Carry Bigfoot Home is an examination of that journey, the search to reconcile the inner with the outer. It aims to explore the cracks in our human armor, the difficult process of enacting real change in our lives, and the sometimes insurmountable forces that make who we are (and who we become) feel almost predetermined. Almost.
Chris Tarry’s stories come at what we might call The Problem of Men as Boys from all possible angles, from a hapless medieval stay-at-home Dad who’s running a con game out of his one-room hovel to a Bigfoot who’s a sad failure as a creative writing teacher. These stories hilariously and poignantly evoke the way, when it comes to relationships, all men are living under a leaky thatched roof with winter on the way, always believing they’re on the edge of a turnaround, even though failure keeps returning like an old friend back in town. – Jim Shepard, Story Prize winning author of You Think That’s Bad, Project X, and over ten other titles
Otherworldly tales that speak to deeper human truths. – Time Out, New York
Short stories are on the rise again, they never should have been thrown to the wayside in the first place, and this collection shows us the beauty of the story, what happens when you hit the perfect note and make a whole room fall silent. – Nick Sweeney, Atticus Review
Chris Tarry’s How To Carry Bigfoot Home will immediately invoke writers like Wells Tower, with its dragons and sea monsters and titular sasquatches colliding with the domestic strife that characterizes so many of the stories. This is an excellent debut, both funny and sad, heartfelt and often surprising. – Matt Bell, author of In the House upon the Dirt between the Lake and the Woods
Painfully funny stories… pitch perfect… Wonderfully conceived and delivered bits of rigorous whimsy. – The Library Journal
Reading the thirteen stories in Chris Tarry’s meticulously absurd debut collection, you may start envisioning one of those evolution posters, featuring the progression of simians that culminates in humanity. – Justin Hickey, Open Letters Monthly
The stories in How to Carry Bigfoot Home are fruitfully obsessed with maleness: How does one manage to be a father, a son, a brother, a husband? What are men supposed to do, and what mischief and violence might they have up their sleeves? In their gleeful linguistic play and surrealistic vibe, Tarry’s tales remind me of those of George Saunders, but he’s up to his very own wonderful thing in this vivid debut.. – Pamela Erens, author of The Virgins and The Understory
Everything you want a story to be: fun, sad, original, and inspired. – Kim Winternheimer, The Masters Review
Tarry’s witty first story collection portrays characters struggling with various insecurities and skewed perceptions amid the creeping shadows of their impending fates. – Booklist
What would happen if some mad scientist were able to fuse the otherworldly exuberance of H.P Lovecraft with the nuanced pathos of John Cheever? The result would be a dazzling, explosive, and inexhaustible new kind of illumination: a writer named Chris Tarry. – Stefan Merrill Block, author of The Story of Forgetting and The Storm at the Door
Sometimes we go looking for monsters, and sometimes we are the monsters—something Tarry’s got down pat. – Blotterature
Tarry’s humor acts as the melody. It sticks with the audience long after reading. – The Cossack Review
Chris Tarry knows from monsters, and from disasters, and from love. He’s now decided to share it all with us. I think I speak for the world when I say: not a moment too soon. – Roy Kesey, author of Any Deadly Thing and Pacazo
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