Alex Behr's debut collection of short stories appeals to the side of me that likes my reading dark. These characters are indeed grim, as are their circumstances, homes, families, and futures. But it's not all bleak in Behr's world; she has a wicked sense of humor that provides an odd counterpoint to the grim. I love it when an author compels me to feel two opposite things at the same time, and Behr did just that with this amusing and wry read. Recommended By Dianah H., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Alex Behr’s debut story collection Planet Grim is a vivid, unsettling portrait of people on the gritty fringes of San Francisco and Portland who long for connection in strange, psychologically difficult ways. Her idiosyncratic prose and wholly unpredictable characters will remind readers of the work of Miranda July and Mary Gaitskill.
"In Alex Behr’s funny poignant stories the kids are sharp, fearless, and insatiable, the parents conflicted, lustful, and tough. The meaning of family and love is an epic game nobody can win or stop playing." Mary Rechner, author of the story collection Nine Simple Patterns for Complicated Women
"Alex Behr’s characters are conflicted, uncertain, and pained. What’s so compelling about her fiction is how she honors that conflictedness, explores the uncertainties, and examines the pain until it reveals itself as irreducibly human and therefore a kind of grace." Dan DeWeese, author of You Don’t Love This Man and Disorder
"Alex Behr’s imagination is wild, rigorous, and totally unique. I haven’t been able to decide if her stories are comedies intercut with horror or horror stories leavened by comedy, but when they’re this entertaining, who cares?" Tom Bissell, author of Apostle: Travels Among the Tombs of the Twelve
"A vivid, unsettling portrait of people on the gritty fringes of San Francisco and Portland who long for connection in strange, psychologically difficult ways. Behr’s idiosyncratic prose and wholly unpredictable characters will remind readers of the work of Miranda July and Mary Gaitskill." The Rumpus
About the Author
Alex Behr has taught creative writing residencies at Portland, OR, high schools through Literary Arts Writers in the Schools program. Her work has been published, or is forthcoming, in Tin House, Salon, Nailed, Mutha, Bitch, Manifest-Station, and other publications. She has performed nationwide in the comedy show Mortified.