Wednesday, 18 December 2013
Book Review: The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories by Angela Carter
The Bloody Chamber (or The Bloody Chamber & Other Stories) is an anthology of short fiction by Angela Carter. All of the stories share a common theme of being closely based upon fairy tales or folk tales. However, she's stated: "My intention was not to do 'versions' or, as the American edition of the book said, horribly, 'adult' fairy tales, but to extract the latent content from the traditional stories."
Lets start by saying that these are all fairy tale retelling. Some are just weird (in a bad way) and stupid. Just like where are you going with these. I mean some of the stories were alright, but then next one would be utterly terrible. The title story, Bloody Chamber was just bad. It was boring, overly long and the girl just straight up went to the forbidden room and opened it. Like there was no build up to that part. However, it was unnecessarily long in other parts.
My real issue with this book is that the writing is so self-indulgent. It also bugged me that things are constantly being compared to a Chinese box. Its like Carter got this nugget in her head about Chinese boxes being the only thing that hold secrets and are puzzles. It like she so in love with them that there nothing possible else she could use to add detail. I mean she uses it three fucking times. It might worked the first time but you can't keep using it.
Also it trying so hard to be shocking at times, I mean it seems like Carter just threw certain things in only to be shocking. It all bit trying too hard to be statement making. I mean you can make a statement with literature but Carter just doesn't do very good job of it. It was more she trying to be intelligent when it not. There's too many big words being throw about. At one point she uses a word that just makes no sense, I even looked up to make sure that this word meant what I thought it did which it did. I mean if going to use a word make sure you know what it actually means.
Overall, I give this book 1 out of 5 stars for too many Fing Chinese boxes. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone, if were possible to rate lower than 1 star I would. It just petty bad and not many redeemable factors.