Robert Coles, professor of psychiatry and medical humanities at Harvard, has used fiction in his teaching in elementary schools, high schools, and colleges as well as in graduate schools of law, medicine, business, divinity, and education. He was tutored in the ethical and philosophical riches to be found in literature by his parents.

The Call of Stories contains conversations with students who reflect upon the various ways that novels and tales have had a positive impact on their lives, values, and personal conduct. In case after case, these individuals make the connection between what they are reading and the state of their inner lives.

Among the authors Dr. Coles has used to spur the moral imagination of his students are Ralph Ellison, John Cheever, Flannery O'Connor, Walker Percy, Tillie Olsen, Charles Dickens, William Carlos Williams, and others. This fine book offers a smorgasbord of delectable treats for those who view the reading of literature as something more than a diversion from the rigors of life.