First Edition. Very good copy in very good+ to near fine dust jacket. (Edges foxed. A few tiny chipped spots at bottom edge of boards. 1& 1/2"-inch razor cut on rear panel of dust jacket. ) Author's SECOND major collection of stories. (BC); 159 pages. Bookseller Inventory #
Synopsis: Short stories that feature a pantheon of losers, peripheral people, and men and women without education, insight, or prospects who, ironically, are too unimaginative to ever give up
Review: "What We Talk About When We Talk About Love" is not only the most well-known short story title of the latter part of the 20th century; it has come to stand for an entire aesthetic, the bare-bones prose style for which Raymond Carver became famous. Perhaps, it could be argued, too famous, at least for his fiction's own good. Like those of Hemingway or any other writer similarly loved, imitated, parodied, and reviled, these stories can sometimes produce the sense of reading pastiche. "A man without hands came to the door to sell me a photograph of my house." "That morning she pours Teacher's over my belly and licks it off. That afternoon she tries to jump out the window." "My friend Mel McGinnis was talking. Mel is a cardiologist, and sometimes that gives him the right." What other writer ever produced first sentences like these? They are like doors into Carverworld, where everyone speaks in simple declarative phrases, no one ever stops at one beer, and failure or violence are the true outcomes of the American dream.
Yet these stories bear careful re-reading, like any truly important and enduring work. For one thing, Carver is one of the few writers who can make desperation--cutting your ex-wife's telephone cord in the middle of a conversation, standing on your own roof chunking rocks while a man with no hands takes your picture--deeply funny. Then there is the sheer craft that went into their creation. Despite their seeming simplicity, his tales are as artfully constructed as poems--and like poems, the best of them can make your breath catch in your throat. In the title piece, for instance, after the gin has been drunk, after the stories have been told, after the tensions in the room have come to the surface and subsided again, there comes a moment of strange lightness and peace: "I could hear my heart beating. I could hear everyone's heart. I could hear the human noise we sat there making, not one of us moving, not even when the room went dark."
Much of what happens in What We Talk About When We Talk About Love (1981) happens offstage, and we're left with tragedy's props: booze, instant coffee, furniture from a failed marriage, cigarettes smoked in the middle of the night. This is not merely a matter of technique. Carver leaves out a great deal, but that's only a measure of his characters' vulnerability, the nerve endings his stories lay bare. To say anything more, one feels, would simply hurt too much. --Mary Park
Title: WHAT WE TALK ABOUT WHEN WE TALK ABOUT LOVE.
Publication Date: 1981
Book Condition: Very Good
Edition: First Edition; First Printing.
Book Description Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Hardcover. Condition: Fair. A readable copy. All pages are intact, and the cover is intact. Pages can include considerable notes-in pen or highlighter-but the notes cannot obscure the text. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G0394516842I5N00
Book Description Alfred A Knopf, New York, 1981. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Good. First Edition. Second impression of the First Edition. 159 pages. Boards faded on edges. Tight binding. Dust jacket shows some wear to edges and corners, with a chipping along edges of front panel. Has been placed in removable protective cover. Top edge of text block slightly foxed. Interior is clean and unmarked. Quantity Available: 1. Category: Fiction; ISBN: 0394516842. ISBN/EAN: 9780394516844. More pictures upon request. Inventory No: 55329. Seller Inventory # 55329
Book Description Knopf. Hardcover. Condition: Good. 0394516842 Good condition with normal wear. Supplemental materials such as CDs or access codes may NOT be included regardless of title. May have bookstore stickers on cover. Expedited shipping available (2-4 day delivery)! Contact us with any questions!. Seller Inventory # Z0394516842Z3
Book Description Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Westminster, MD, U.S.A., 1981. Hardcover. Condition: Near Fine. Dust Jacket Condition: Near Fine. 1st Edition. Book Description: Alfred Knopf, New York, 1981. Cloth. Book Condition: Near Fine. Dust Jacket Condition: near fine. There is a slight tear on top of front cover. Never read. This is a first edition, first printing of the author's second collection of short stories. A lovely near fine copy in bright near fine dustwrapper with original $9.95 price to front flap. Bookseller Inventory # 10005. Seller Inventory # 000008
Book Description Knopf, 1981. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. 1st Edition. Colorful DJ is not price-clipped; light rubbing & soil from handling; protected in mylar. Boards firmly bound; thin sun line at upper & lower edges of boards; crisp, clean pages throughout. Seller Inventory # WS19617
Book Description Alfred a Knopf Inc, 1990. Condition: Good. A+ Customer service! Satisfaction Guaranteed! Book is in Used-Good condition. Pages and cover are clean and intact. Used items may not include supplementary materials such as CDs or access codes. May show signs of minor shelf wear and contain limited notes and highlighting. Seller Inventory # 0394516842-2-4
Book Description Knopf, 1981. Hardcover. Condition: Used: Good. Seller Inventory # SONG0394516842
Book Description Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1981. Hardcover. Condition: Fine. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. 1st Edition. 8vo. Light blue boards with dark blue cloth spine. 159pp. 2nd printing. Fine in near fine dust jacket. No chips. Not price-clipped. This copy warmly inscribed by Carver on the front end-paper & dated 1981. Inscribed by Author(s). Seller Inventory # 009847
Book Description New York: Alfred a Knopf Inc, 1990. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. 1st Edition. Small 8vo. 159 pp. Quarter-bound in dark blue cloth, blue boards, with gilt titling on the spine. The margins show fading. A small bump to each lower corne, and a small indentation to the bottom edge. The DJ is not price-clipped; it shows light rubbing, a small closed tear, light corner wear, and some edge wear. Seller Inventory # ABE-1914378037
Book Description Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1981. Hardcover. Condition: Fine. Dust Jacket Condition: Fine. First Edition. 159 pages. Carver's best-known book of stories, and now the epicenter of the debate over the role his editor Gordon Lish played in preparing these works for publication. From Carver's manuscripts, it is now known that Lish cut the stories extensively, in many cases removing more than he left in. Lish also changed the names of characters, rewrote dialogue, and retitled stories. The Library of America edition of Carver's 'Collected Stories' includes 'Beginners', this book as it was originally submitted in manuscript. 'Beginners' reveals Carver writing longer, more fleshed-out stories, closer to the style of his later work, 'Cathedral.' The difficulty, of course, in assessing whether Lish was good or bad for Carver is that these terse stories of down-and-out lives are the ones that influenced a whole generation of realist writers. It remains to be seen whether the longer version will have the same resonance and influence. First edition (first printing). Cloth edges a bit faded, else a fine copy in a fine dust jacket with sharp colors and original price intact. Seller Inventory # 185117