Tim and Claire’s Top Books of 2023

Man and Woman wearing glasses and holding stacks of books

I’m pretty thrilled to find “Those People Behind Us” on Tim and Claire Fuller’s list of Top Books of 2023. Author Claire Fuller read 90+ books last year, while promoting her latest novel “The Memory of Animals” and finishing a draft of her sixth novel (!!!)

drawing of author Raymond Carver in his office with a copy of Those People Behind Us next to him.Her husband Tim wrote this about “Those People Behind Us”:

“Camarillo’s characters are real, funny, annoying and complicated … It felt as though I was reading lots of Raymond Carver short stories all at once, which is perfect if you run out of Raymond Carver stories.”

If you’re unfamiliar with Raymond Carver, he was an American poet and short story writer. He published his first collection of stories, Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?, in 1976. His breakout collection, What We Talk About When We Talk About Love (1981), received immediate acclaim and established Carver as an important figure in the literary world. It was followed by Cathedral (1983), which Carver considered his watershed and is widely regarded as his masterpiece. The definitive collection of his stories, Where I’m Calling From, was published shortly before his death in 1988.

Raymond Carver chronicled the everyday lives and problems of the working poor. His blue-collar characters are crushed by broken marriages, financial problems, and failed careers, Carver’s stripped-down, minimalist prose style is remarkable for its honesty and power. He is credited with helping revitalize the short story genre in the late 20th century.

So….I’m taking Tim’s words as a wonderful compliment.



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