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Door in Dark Water by [Callahan, P. D.]
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Door in Dark Water Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Length: 262 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product description

About the Author

In 1972, P. D. Callahan graduated from Hampshire College and drove directly to Maine to visit a friend. Ten years later he was still there working on the water, winter and summer, as a commercial herring fisherman. Callahan’s crazy unplanned career is the subject of Door in Dark Water, a memoir of the people he loved, their collective moments of terror and temporary stardom, and a culture long since lost. P. D. Callahan now lives outside of Boston, Massachusetts and has published several short works in literary magazines. This is his first book.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 15193 KB
  • Print Length: 262 pages
  • Publisher: Nightwood Press (27 May 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00KMDQ8MY
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,380,295 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
For those of us that lead relatively simple lives this book reminds us that we all have extraordinary tales to tell. A beautifully told story of hard graft and tough love in a hostile environment.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars 28 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absorbing account of a commercial fisherman's life 22 Aug. 2014
By Josh Adelson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
For me as a life-long New Englander, fishermen and their boats are just a part of the coastal scenery. I’ve never given them much thought. My impressions have been defined by tourism industry images more than anything else. I suspect it’s the same for many others.

Door in Dark Water is exactly that – a vivid portal into a way of life that is nearby but for all practical purposes invisible. I knew that fishing is a difficult way to make a living, but I was still struck by the myriad ways in which the rigors present themselves: physical demands, unpredictable income, and genuine dangers, counter-balanced by moments of exhilaration from the adrenaline of hand-to-hand combat with the forces of nature.

The book provides an absorbing account of the challenges, the actual fishing techniques involved, and the colorful personalities of the people who live this life, along with the author's own improbable journey through it.

I appreciate that the author keeps to a straight narrative. He shares his own emotions but there is little interpretation of others’, and no attempt to glorify or demonize any character, the lifestyle or the industry. As a result the characters and situations are revealed very directly, and as a reader I am free to experience my own reactions.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Linda Greenlaw fans take note... 10 Aug. 2014
By Carol MacA - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Callahan has written a highly readable, lyrical memoir about the years he spent fishing out of South Bristol, Maine in the 1970s. Fresh out of college with a liberal arts degree, he stumbled into the world of small-scale commercial fishing and found himself hooked, as it were. He vividly describes the characters and events of the time, helping the reader understand why, in the face of physical hardship, constant uncertainty, and near-poverty line existence, he found himself continually drawn to the fishing life. He does an excellent job of describing the technical aspects of the fisheries without overloading the reader with detail, and is equally deft in his descriptions of the local Mainers; some might be crusty and taciturn, but they were ultimately willing to take on this college-educated kid from "away" and let him prove himself, learning by doing. Full disclosure: this reviewer is married to a man who fished commercially at roughly the same time period - but that is certainly not a prerequisite for enjoying these accounts, which are at turns dramatic and humorous. Even landlubbers can't fail to sense the author's deep passion for this largely disappeared way of life.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this book 2 Aug. 2014
By Sam Payne - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I loved this book, even though (I thought) I had no particular interest in the fishing culture of South Bristol, Maine in the 1970's. It is a story about people and choices and passions and the writing style is elegant, understated, rhythmic, and unpretentious. I didn't get all the fishing stuff, but the human emotions came in loud and clear. Was sad when it was over and I hope the author continues to write about other parts of his early life from the perspective of an older man, as this was but one chapter in a man of many incarnations in one lifetime.
5.0 out of 5 stars Transported Me to a New World in the New England Ocean 16 April 2015
By Madeleine Harvey - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I loved this book. I have been visiting some of the places the author describes since early childhood, but always watching commercial fishing from the sidelines, thinking “better those guys than me”. This is a wonderful story about the hardscrabble life of the Maine coast fishing community, while infused with plenty of humor, making us come to like even the not so likable characters so eloquently described as we move through the story. The majority of us are never going to come close to having any of these -experiences on the water, yet they are made so real in this book that you’ll double-check when you climb into bed that you didn’t carry fish scales on the soles of your feet, and you will be more grateful than ever for those clean sheets and a warm meal the next day. And if you didn’t know that herring were just grown sardines, well now you do. The book is written with warmth and humor, and the author shows a genuine interest in – and compassion for – all the people he meets, works with, and befriends along the way. My only wish is that the glossary had come first; the fishing world has a whole vocabulary of its own (and then there’s the Downeast version). A great read.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two Tales in One 18 Aug. 2014
By Eugene H. Pool - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a long time Maine waterman (amateur) I had some idea of what Callahan was describing and living, but the tales of plunging boats in 20 foot waves really struck me with admiration for him, and he captured so well the vocabulary, language, speech, and gestures of the men and women he included, too. Excellent and revealing dialogue, as well; similarly, his own philosophical investigations. He has truly captured a way of life unknown to most of us and intertwined it with the story of a young man's coming, not just of age, but to something even more--a certain wisdom. Bravo!
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