Call Me By Your Name
Goodreads ratings
4.23 / 5

"Call Me By Your Name" Summary

By André Aciman

fiction | 248 pages | Published in NaN

Call Me by Your Name is the story of a sudden and powerful romance that blossoms between an adolescent boy and a summer guest at his parents' cliff-side mansion on the Italian Riviera. Unprepared for the consequences of their attraction, at first each feigns indifference. But during the restless summer weeks that follow, unrelenting buried currents of obsession and fear, fascination and desire, intensify their passion as they test the charged ground between them. What grows from the depths of their spirits is a romance of scarcely six weeks' duration and an experience that marks them for a lifetime. For what the two discover on the Riviera and during a sultry evening in Rome is the one thing both already fear they may never truly find again: total intimacy. The psychological maneuvers that accompany attraction have seldom been more shrewdly captured than in André Aciman's frank, unsentimental, heartrending elegy to human passion. Call Me by Your Name is clear-eyed, bare-knuckled, and ultimately unforgettable.


Estimated read time: 4 min read

One Sentence Summary

A summer romance in Italy between a young man and a visiting scholar challenges their understanding of love and desire.


"Call Me By Your Name" by André Aciman is a captivating coming-of-age novel that tells the story of a passionate summer romance between two young men in Italy. The book explores themes of love, desire, and the complexities of human relationships. Set against the backdrop of a sun-drenched Italian countryside, the novel takes the reader on a journey of self-discovery and emotional awakening.

Brief Synopsis

The plot of "Call Me By Your Name" unfolds in the 1980s in a beautiful villa in the Italian Riviera. The story is narrated by Elio, a precocious 17-year-old boy who lives with his academic parents. Each summer, Elio's family hosts a visiting scholar to assist his father with his research. This particular summer, the visitor is Oliver, a charming and confident 24-year-old American scholar. The novel follows the evolution of the intense and passionate relationship that develops between Elio and Oliver.

TitleCall Me By Your Name
AuthorAndré Aciman
SettingItalian Riviera, 1980s

Main Characters

The main characters in "Call Me By Your Name" are:

ElioA 17-year-old boy, introspective and intelligent, grappling with his emotions and desires.
OliverA 24-year-old American scholar, confident and enigmatic, who becomes the object of Elio's infatuation.

Chapter Summaries

Chapters 1-3

Elio describes the annual routine of his family hosting a visiting scholar and his initial impressions of Oliver, who arrives at their villa. Elio feels a mix of fascination and resentment towards Oliver.

Chapters 4-6

Elio and Oliver's relationship begins to evolve as they spend more time together. Elio struggles with his growing attraction to Oliver and tries to decipher Oliver's ambiguous behavior.

Chapters 7-9

Elio and Oliver's bond deepens as they share personal stories and experiences. Elio becomes increasingly infatuated with Oliver, and their relationship takes a more intimate turn.

Chapters 10-12

The tension between Elio and Oliver reaches a climax as they navigate their feelings for each other. Conflicting emotions and desires come to the surface, leading to a pivotal moment in their relationship.

Chapters 13-15

Elio and Oliver's romance faces challenges as they confront societal norms and personal inhibitions. The summer draws to a close, and they must come to terms with the transient nature of their connection.

Main Events

  • Elio's initial fascination and resentment towards Oliver
  • The deepening of Elio and Oliver's relationship
  • Elio's internal struggle with his feelings for Oliver
  • The intimate turn in Elio and Oliver's relationship
  • The climax of the tension between Elio and Oliver
  • The challenges Elio and Oliver face in their romance

Themes and Insights


  • Sexual Awakening: The novel delves into the exploration of sexual identity and the awakening of desire during adolescence.
  • Transience of Love: The fleeting nature of summer love and the bittersweet realization of impermanence.
  • Intellectual Connection: The significance of intellectual and emotional connection in romantic relationships.


  • Aciman portrays the complexities of human emotions and the nuances of desire through Elio's introspective narration.
  • The novel captures the essence of first love and the profound impact it can have on an individual's life.

Reader's Takeaway

"Call Me By Your Name" offers a poignant and evocative portrayal of love, desire, and self-discovery. Readers are immersed in the emotional landscape of the characters and are prompted to reflect on their own experiences of love and longing. The novel's vivid imagery and lyrical prose create a captivating reading experience that lingers in the hearts of its audience.


"Call Me By Your Name" is a timeless and deeply resonant novel that explores the complexities of human relationships with sensitivity and insight. Aciman's masterful storytelling and rich character development make the novel a compelling exploration of love, desire, and the fleeting nature of intimate connections. Elio and Oliver's summer romance in the sun-kissed Italian countryside leaves an indelible impression on the reader, inviting them to contemplate the profound impact of first love and the enduring power of emotional connection.

Call Me By Your Name FAQ

  1. What is the genre of 'Call Me By Your Name'?

    The book 'Call Me By Your Name' is a coming-of-age, LGBTQ+ romance novel.

  2. Is 'Call Me By Your Name' a standalone novel or part of a series?

    'Call Me By Your Name' is a standalone novel.

  3. What is the setting of 'Call Me By Your Name'?

    The story is set in the Italian Riviera during the 1980s.

  4. Who is the author of 'Call Me By Your Name'?

    The book was written by André Aciman.

  5. Is 'Call Me By Your Name' suitable for young adult readers?

    The book contains mature themes and is more suitable for adult readers.