Canadian

Bad Endings

This collection of short stories by Carleigh Baker takes troubled characters to a moment of realization or self-revelation, but the results aren't always pretty.

Carleigh Baker

(Anvil Press)

Carleigh Baker likes to make light in the dark. Whether plumbing family ties, the end of a marriage or death itself, she never lets go of the witty, the ironic and perhaps most notably, the awkward. Despite the title, the resolution in these stories isn't always tragic, but it's often uncomfortable, unexpected or just plain strange. Character digressions, bad decisions and misconceptions abound.

While steadfastly local in her choice of setting, Baker's deep appreciation for nature takes a lot of these stories out of Vancouver and into the wild. Salmon and bees play reoccurring roles in these tales, as do rivers. Occasionally, characters blend with their animal counterparts, adding a touch of magic realism. Nature is a place of escape and attempted convalescence for characters suffering from urban burnout. Even if things get weird along the way, as Hunter S. Thompson said, "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."

In Bad Endings, Baker takes troubled characters to a moment of realization or self-revelation, but the results aren't always pretty. (From Anvil Press)

Interviews

Carleigh Baker on her debut short story collection, which won the City of Vancouver Book Award. 19:09

From the book

The people on the train are staring. My phone is buzzing in my front pocket, and limp balloons hang from my braids. The heat is cranked and my feet are sweaty from two pairs of socks. The train pulls into Columbia, the stop closest to home. The doors open and close, but I'm still riding.


From Bad Endings by Carleigh Baker ©2017. Published by Anvil Press.