What We Talk about when We Talk about Love: Stories

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Vintage Books, 1989 - Fiction - 159 pages
651 Reviews
In his second collection of stories, as in his first, Carver's characters are peripheral people--people without education, insight or prospects, people too unimaginative to even give up. Carver celebrates these men and women.

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Love me a manly writer - Goodreads
The dullness of the prose serves some purpose, however. - Goodreads
Carver is one of themasters of short story telling. - Goodreads
The unfinished endings are a bitch. - Goodreads
Intense. Masterful writing. - Goodreads
Carver's prose is familiar and frightening immediately. - Goodreads

Review: What We Talk About When We Talk About Love

User Review  - Isaac Cooper - Goodreads

My mother is sixty-five. She belongs to a singles club. Even so, it was hard. I stood with my hand on the railing and watched as the man kissed her. She was kissing him back, and the TV was going ... Read full review

Review: What We Talk About When We Talk About Love

User Review  - Joseph - Goodreads

I don't know what's more affecting about this book: the sheer weight of the desperation felt by its characters, or the economy with which Carver manages to tell it. How is it even possible that some ... Read full review



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About the author (1989)

Born in 1938 in an Oregon logging town, Raymond Carver grew up in Yakima, From California he went to Iowa to attend the Iowa Writers Workshop. Soon, however, he returned to California, where he worked at a number of unskilled jobs before obtaining a teaching position. Widely acclaimed as the most important short story writer of his generation, Carver writes about the kind of lower-middle-class people whom he knew growing up. His characters are waitresses, mechanics, postmen, high school teachers, factory workers, door-to-door salesmen who lead drab lives because of limited funds. Critics have said that may have the most distinctive vision of the working class. Nominated posthumously for both a National Book Critics Circle Award (1988) and a Pulitzer Prize (1989) for Where I'm Calling From: New and Selected Stories (1988), Carver is one of a handful of writers credited with reviving the short story form. Some have put Carver in the tradition of Ernest Hemingway and Stephen Crane. Carver's stories tend to be brief, with enigmatic endings, although never erupting. Violence is often just below the surface. An air of quiet desperation pervades his stories, as Carver explores the collapse of human relationships in bleak circumstances. In later works, Carver strikes a note of redemption, unheard at the beginning of his career. But for readers who are not attuned to Carver's voice of resignation, these moments may sound sentimental and unconvincing. Carver died of lung cancer in 1988.

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