ORDER FROM SARABANDE BOOKS (Publication date: Nov 2, 2021)
PUBLISHER’S WEEKLY: Barton impresses with his fresh voice and vibrant imagination.
ELECTRIC LIT (2021 Favorite Short Story Collections): A Tyler Barton story is the first technicolor moment of Oz, or the door opening at Dr. Frank-n-Furter’s castle. What begins as something lullingly known kicks into hallucinatory wonderland, quick. His stories all run a fever. Everyone misbehaves, but they do so seeking grace, humility. Reaching, reaching. This is yet another through line of Barton’s work: characters on the brink. Their glittering, violent, dizzy desperation. – T Kira Madden
INDEPENDENT BOOK REVIEW: Barton asks the question: what is happiness in America when you are broke, normal, or alone, and where can it be found? Anywhere? Everywhere?
CRAFT MAGAZINE: Barton seems to understand how the smallest shifts can transform a space, a character, a story
KIRKUS: Funny, surprising, and disarmingly poignant stories that can appear laissez faire but are in fact, very finely crafted.
THE RUMPUS: Eternal Night at the Nature Museum crackles with unbridled energy as characters seek home in unlikely places: a demolition derby, a stranger’s idling truck, an abandoned museum. A treasure trove of formal variety, these stories feature an electrifying array of characters trying to find a foothold in the world or transcend it altogether.
MANKATO MAGAZINE: What they have in common is the inventive writing and offbeat compassion of an author who seems fully committed to his never-a-dull moment approach.
tylerstevenbarton [at] gmail [dot] com || @goftyler
Tyler Barton‘s debut full-length book of fiction, Eternal Night at the Nature Museum was published by Sarabande Books in November 2021. He’s the author of The Quiet Part Loud (2019) winner of the Turnbuckle Chapbook Contest from Split Lip Press. His short fiction has been published widely in journals and magazines such as Kenyon Review, Subtropics, The Iowa Review, Gulf Coast, Cincinnati Review, Copper Nickel and others. Stories from Eternal Night at the Nature Museum have been awarded prizes and honors from Kenyon Review, Phoebe Journal, The Chicago Review of Books, The Best of the Net, and Best Small Fictions 2020. He serves as the Communication Manager for the Adirondack Center for Writing in Saranac Lake, NY.
“The 20 stories in Tyler Barton’s extraordinary Eternal Night at the Nature Museum take the reader on a drift through in-between places populated by people in search of more permanent homes. In busted cars and hotel elevators, underground shelters and single-wide trailers, museums and assisted living facilities, churches and stages, idiosyncratic and aggrieved weirdos, lovably disgruntled, seek sanctuary and try to succeed at impossible tasks; they want to help (or be helped) but don’t know how (or how to ask). The humor and humanity with which Barton depicts his characters’ plights is nothing short of a delight and his cracked wit shines on every page.” —Kathleen Rooney, author of Cher Ami and Major Whittlesey and Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk
“A gem of a collection; fresh and special, full of heart. Fans of early George Saunders will find a familiar.” —Amelia Gray, author of Isadora
“Startling, gritty, wistful, lonely, quick, sharp, hopeful, hopeful, hopeful. Yes, this is what you want to read.” —Daniel Handler, author of Bottle Grove
“Raucous, laugh out loud funny, explosively imaginative, every story brims with heart.” —T Kira Madden, author of Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls
“Eternal Night at the Nature Museum is a dizzying, brilliant collection, carried by Tyler Barton’s hypnotic ability to pull narratives into the strangest places, grounded by his genuine love and empathy for his characters, no matter how broken they might seem. There is such a precision in his writing, to let the wildness bend and twist the narrative without ever losing the heart of what makes these stories so special. To borrow from Barton’s own work, these are “painfully beautiful” stories, and I could not love them more.”
—Kevin Wilson, author of Nothing to See Here
“In these terrific stories, I hear echoes of Chekhov (clear-eyed humility), Barthelme (wackiness that breaks your heart), and Cheever (American bewilderment). Mostly, though, what I hear is the voice of a winning and graceful young writer with a gift for narrative and an instinctive feel for the American landscape in all its tilted, hopeless, hopeful splendor and misery.”
—David Leavitt, author of Shelter in Place
“I loved Barton’s first collection, The Quiet Part Loud, and have been eager to read more from him. Some stories are flash and some are longer, but they all really resonated with me. I kept underline beautiful phrases and find myself wondering about the characters even though I was only in their lives for a brief moment. I haven’t even put it on my shelf yet because I’m sure I’m going to read it again ASAP.”
—Allison Renner (@howifeelaboutbooks)