Short Bus is a darkly humorous collection of linked stories set in the southern haunts of coastal Texas--near where the Rio Grande dumps its brackish water into the Gulf of Mexico. The stories in this book ponder deformity in all its forms. Fetuses twist their mustaches, feet float in jars, a special- education teacher aims to rob a bank with the aid of his students. But binding these stories is a gentle humanity. Brian Allen Carr moves his grotesque characters toward the hollows of hearts, heaving despicable actions toward tender outcomes. Short Bus is a book about understanding the worst of us, smiling at that which makes us shudder.
Brian Allen Carr's brain must be a snarl of firing pistons, sizzling fuses, hoses leaking blood and tequila and hydraulic oil. How else can you explain the twisted machinery of his stories? Each of them is a disturbing journey that will thrill and educate you in the sunlit haze of the Texas/Mexico border--and the sometimes subterranean darkness of the human heart. --Benjamin Percy, author of The Wilding and Refresh, Refresh
Brian Allen Carr balances the harshness of his characters' lives with beautiful and precise language, making parched land feel lush. Carr writes the best kind of stories--stories that only he could have written. --Mary Miller (author of Big World)
Brian Allen Carr has written a short story collection that is everything hardworking--the characters, the scenery, the sentences--all form to build a machine crafted to break hearts along the border. A ridiculously strong first collection. --Shane Jones (author of Light Boxes )