Where I'm Calling From

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A major collection of Carver's short stories, including seven new stories written shortly before the author's death in 1988.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
The summation of a triumphant career from "one of the great short story writers of our time—of any time." (The Philadelphia Inquirer)"[Raymond Carver is] one of the true contemporary masters." —The New York Review of Books"[Carver's stories] can...be counted among the masterpieces of American fiction." —Irving Howe, The New York Times Book Review"[These stories] overflow with the danger, excitement, mystery and possibility of life.... Carver is a writer of astonishing compassion and honesty, his eye set on describing and revealing the world as he sees it. His eye is so clear, it almost breaks your heart." —The Washington Post Book World
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780679722311
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 6/28/1989
  • Series: Vintage Contemporaries Series
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 544
  • Sales rank: 128,746
  • Product dimensions: 5.15 (w) x 7.98 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

Raymond Carver was born in Clatskanie, Oregon, in 1938. His first collection of stories, Will You Please Be Quiet, Please (a National Book Award nominee in 1977), was followed by What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, Cathedral (nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in 1984), and Where I'm Calling From in 1988, when he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He died in August of that year, shortly after completing the poems of A New Path to the Waterfall.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 10 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Dirty realism leaves me cold.

    Mr. Carver is a genius who has done a great deal for the short story, but, unfortunately, this collection is tedious to me. The drinking, flawed characters took a toll on me, and, while I can appreciate his flair for realistic dialogue, I tire of the plots that seem to all end in unhappiness or ambiguity. Others may not agree and will have to pick up a copy and judge for themselves.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2003

    What he'd be writing now

    People who consider Raymond Carver to be a strictly minimalist writer should really read this book from cover to cover. What they will discover is a career on the cusp of change, just before the author's life was tragically cut short. The stories are presented in chronological order. The opening dozen stories or so are classics of minimalist style which reaches its peak with the devestating 3-page story 'Little Things' in which a child is literally torn apart by its parents divorce. But Carver's tone and style changes in the stories that follow. 'What We Talk About When We Talk about Love' and the gut-wrenching 'So Much Water So Close To Home' take on a new level of story-telling where Carver gives us a more intimate look at his characters. The last two of the previously published stories are nothing like the earlier stories. In 'Cathedral', a typical Carver married man--distant, cynical, and slightly smug--makes surprising contact with another human being, presumably for the first time, in the most unlikely of situations. It is almost a salvation. 'A Good Small Thing' (which was a revision of an earlier story called 'Scotty') is nothing less than a masterpiece. In Carver's earlier career, this story would have ended bitterly and, perhaps, indifferently. Instead, this story ends up with an astonishing flavor of hope, forgiveness, and even closure. The seven 'New Stories' at the collection's end just drive home the fact that Carver was really moving forward or at least in a new direction. I defy anyone to read 'Intimacy' or 'Elephant' and say, 'Typical minimalism.' I would place a heavy bet that the reader would reply the same way I did, 'Damn! Damn! Can you imagine what he'd be writing if he were still with us?' Damn.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2002

    Alcohol and Relationships

    I never heard of Ray Carver until I read this book for my Eng Lit class in college. I felt it was such a strong self-reflection of Carver's own life. Captivating! Many of his endings are left for the reader's imagination to come up with their own suitable ending to the story with or without a moral. Very sad at times also.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2002

    I cant believe only one other person reviewed this

    This book belongs in the Pantheon of American short fiction collections. Very few American writers match his gift for the short story and this book contains all his most celebrated works. Kick yourself if you consider yourself a true reader and haven't read at least 50% of this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2001

    one who can not draw from 3000 years of culture lives from hand to mouth

    This is one of the best short stories collection I have ever read. Carver's characters are as real as they would be real life people.

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    Posted September 27, 2010

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    Posted April 11, 2009

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    Posted November 7, 2008

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    Posted May 5, 2010

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    Posted October 26, 2008

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