Saturday, December 26, 2009

Raymond Carver: A Writer's Life.(Brief article)(Book review).

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He has been called "a chronicler of blue-collar despair." He led a relatively private life, much of it spent trying to raise cash via odd jobs and the writing-conference circuit, and died from the cancerous effects of excessive drinking and smoking. Raymond Carver (1938-1988) is a fascinating figure more for what went on in his imagination, as it registered the dynamics of couples' relationships amid the counterculture, than for his messy life. He came from the lower-middle class of Yakima, Wash., and was a father before he turned 21. Maryann Burk, his first wife, had her own measure of success as a memoirist, but as the Carvers' lives came to resemble his stories, they divorced. Carver soon found his second great love, Tess Gallagher. It's ironic that the master of the minimalist short story has his own life recounted in such whopping detail by short story writer and essayist Sklenicka. Earnest and carefully researched, this biography interestingly recounts Carver's working relationship with editor Gordon Lish and other publishing figures. But the writing is most compelling in an epilogue that highlights posthumous legal disputes showing Gallagher maintaining an iron grip on Carver's growing legacy and reputation. (Nov.)

Named Works: Raymond Carver: A Writer's Life (Biography) Book reviews

Source Citation
"Raymond Carver: A Writer's Life." Publishers Weekly 256.35 (2009): 43+. Academic OneFile. Web. 26 Dec. 2009. .

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