ISBN-10: 1639550445
ISBN-13: 9781639550449
Publisher: Milkweed Editions
Publish Date: 07/11/2023
Dimensions: 8.40" L, 5.50" W, 0.80" H

Call Up the Waters: Stories


Price: $18.00


A magnetic debut collection of stories about the daily lives and labors of girls and women in rural America.

In Call Up the Waters, the natural world is an escape hatch, a refuge, a site of work, and an occasional antagonist. In the title story, a devastating drought leads a mother of two deep into the Colorado Rockies in search of water. In “The Handler,” a woman leaves her boyfriend for the New Hampshire woods and fifty-seven sled dogs. A distress call from a boat in Massachusetts Bay compels a mother, in “Sea Women,” to plumb her daughter’s secrets. A girl torn between truth and expectation shows her courage in a funereal performance in “Barn Burning.” And in “Bending the Map,” a woman turns the tables on her obsessive, would-be lover after a powerful storm ravages her canyon home.

The characters in these ten stories-search-and-rescue workers, dog trainers, naturalists, archaeologists, and dowsers–are each fundamentally shaped by the environment in which they live and work. They seek meaning through labor, connection through jobs. But in that searching they often find themselves far from their destination. Familiar landscapes suddenly feel strange. Unfamiliar spaces offer something like hope. Off the map and off the grid, these characters, and their regrets and devotions, are nevertheless immediately, intimately recognizable.

Sharply observant but steadily elegant, textured with empathy and grit, Call Up the Waters marks the arrival of a remarkable new talent.

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Praise for Call Up the Waters

"The achievement of these stories has more to do with emotional movement than a point of arrival. This approach creates a sense of depth and realism: These characters exist beyond the moments the text describes; their world is not restricted to a story arc [. . .] A collection that patiently renders emotional depth without recourse to angst or melodrama."-Kirkus Reviews

"Caron's assured debut collection explores humanity's relationship with the natural world. [. . .] These stories provide strong and varied impressions of characters on the margins."Publishers Weekly

"With astonishing power and in crystalline prose, the stories of Call Up the Waters follow people who maintain precarious balance on the edge of the natural world."Foreword Reviews, starred review

"In Amber Caron's debut collection of short stories, Call Up the Waters, the natural world is an escape hatch, a refuge, a site of work and an occasional antagonist."–Jan Risher, The Advocate

"The razor sharp insights into the human psyche resonate in every story. There's no filler, only top notch writing that pulls you in without any predictable ending. The only other collection of short stories I've read this year that even compares to this is Sidle Creek by Jolene McIlwain."–Todd Miller, Arcadia Books, Spring Green, WI

"This stunning debut story collection marks the beginning of what is sure to be a long career. Amber Caron's knack for character-building drew me right in. Loved this!"–Suzanna Hermans, Oblong Books, Millerton, NY

"Call Up the Waters is a stunning collection by
an extraordinary talent. With great precision, Amber Caron manages to locate
the most fragile and painful parts of her characters' relationships while also
pulling in a vivid sense of the external world and all that is beyond the open
window or door. These stories are suspenseful, moving, and beautifully
written."–Jill McCorkle, author of Life After Life

"Amber Caron's debut signals the arrival of a bright talent to literary short fiction. Her prose sings, and shapes satisfying stories that reveal deeply human truths about labor, gender, and our ineffable connection to the natural world."–Megan Mayhew Bergman, author of How Strange a Season

"Amber Caron creates a sobering and nuanced sense of
emotional wilderness–a world in which no place is ever entirely sure or safe.
This book is cool, assured, unsettling, and gorgeous."–Joan Wickersham,
author of The Suicide Index and The News from Spain

"Amber Caron writes with flinty tenderness about the ways that human yearnings can collide with impervious physical and emotional landscapes. Her language is swift and precise. Her vision reaches beyond the surface terrain. The result, in this impressive debut collection, is storytelling that reverberates and haunts."–Deirdre McNamer, author of Aviary: A Novel

"Amber Caron's [work] stood out to our editors for many reasons, among them its bounty of wonderfu
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ISBN-10: 1639550445
ISBN-13: 9781639550449
Publisher: Milkweed Editions
Publish Date: 07/11/2023
Dimensions: 8.40" L, 5.50" W, 0.80" H
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