Carry the One begins in the hours following Carmen’s wedding reception, when a car filled with stoned, drunk, and sleepy guests accidentally hits and kills a girl on a dark country road. For the next twenty-five years, those involved, including Carmen and her brother and sister, craft their lives in response to this single tragic moment. As one character says, “When you add us up, you always have to carry the one.” Through friendships and love affairs; marriage and divorce; parenthood, holidays, and the modest calamities and triumphs of ordinary days, Carry the One shows how one life affects another and how those who thrive and those who self-destruct are closer to each other than we’d expect. As they seek redemption through addiction, social justice, and art, Anshaw’s characters reflect our deepest pain and longings, our joys, and our transcendent moments of understanding. This wise, wry, and erotically charged novel derives its power and appeal from the author’s exquisite use of language; her sympathy for her recognizable, very flawed characters; and her persuasive belief in the transforming forces of time and love.
About the Author
Carol Anshaw is the author of Aquamarine, Seven Moves, and Lucky in the Corner. She has received the Ferro-Grumley Award, the Carl Sandburg Literary Arts Award for Fiction, and a National Book Critics Circle Citation for Excellence in Reviewing. She lives in Chicago.
Praise for Carry the One…
"Anshaw has a deft touch with the events of ordinary life, giving them heft and meaning. . . . Funny, touching, knowing . . . a quiet, lovely, genuine accomplishment."—Publishers Weekly (boxed starrred review)
“Masterful in her authenticity, quicksilver dialogue, wise humor, and receptivity to mystery, Anshaw has
created a deft and transfixing novel of fallibility and quiet glory.”—Donna Seaman, Booklist (starred review)
“Anshaw deftly depicts family ties broken and reconnected, portraying the best and the worst of this group of eccentrics. Recommended for readers of well-crafted literary fiction.”—Library Journal
“Sharply observed and warmly understanding—another fine piece of work from this talented author.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Here's passion and addiction, guilt and damage, all the beautiful mess of family life. Carry the One will lift readers off their feet and bear them along on its eloquent tide.”—Emma Donoghue, author of Room