Prince Charming on the Far Side of the Moon: & other stories (Perdido Tales - Short Stories Book 1)

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When Carter is bad, your mind drifts away from every sentence and all you can think of is skipping to the next tale. Oct 29, Christopher Stevenson rated it it was amazing Shelves: If she were alive today, they would say, "Bad woman! When she was alive, they said, "Bad woman! You can't just like Angela Carter. You can't say, "Oh! Jul 25, Adam rated it it was amazing Shelves: Her work takes stock imagery of our imagination legends and historical figures and plunges it into her surreal and gothic imagination and re-imagines, demythologizes, or makes it utterly unrecognizable.

Resembling the work of Borges, Dineson, Brothers Grimm, Burroughs, Hoffman, and Poe but still really being unique and in her own voice. Whilst The Bloody Chamber and Black Venus are Carter at her brutal best, the other collections dragged the overall rating down with a vengeance; Fireworks being the primary culprit. The stories are more repulsive than they are compelling or sensual and in many cases, far more preachy and convoluted than lyrical. The majority are unsatisfying and don't seem to achieve anything. My impression was that the stories were bizarre just for the sake of being bizarre - perhaps even just for shits and giggles.

The majority were too indistinguishable to be memorable; A Souvenir of Japan , The Smile of Winter and Flesh and the Mirror told more or less the exact same story. Granted, others weren't entirely forgettable - but completely for the wrong reasons. Gloriously dark and transgressive, The Bloody Chamber is an astounding collection. The heroines are often the ones to instigate the sexual encounter and champion the liberating and transformative power of indulging in passion. The Bloody Chamber itself is by far the jewel of the collection, but each individual story is charged with sexual energy and stunning imagery - exquisitely rendered.

Black Venus focuses primarily on the unheard perspectives of the women behind famous names. American Ghosts and Old World Wonders as well as the earlier works and uncollected stories were mediocre. Meh is all I have to say about those - but I invest that single syllable with religious disappointment. Overall, this fell flat for me.

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Reading the stories collected together dampened the experience, highlighting the splendour of a select few but crucially concentrating the disappointment of the remainder. If you are a Carter aficionado, by all means give it a go. Forget you ever heard of the other collections.

Apr 27, Jean-marcel rated it liked it. Angela Carter is a phenomenal stylist, of this there can be no doubt. I truly enjoy her juxtaposition of the beautiful and the grotesque, often depicted in single sentences, so that one doesn't quite know whether to be smitten or disgusted.

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Many of her tales possess a sort of profound, gothic heaviness that occasionally appeals very much to my sensibilities. It has to be said though that quite a few of the stories in this collection, especially some of the early ones, feel like writing exercises Angela Carter is a phenomenal stylist, of this there can be no doubt.

It has to be said though that quite a few of the stories in this collection, especially some of the early ones, feel like writing exercises rather than actual tales. I also must warn that Carter's symbolism is often rather unsubtle and heavy-handed. Sad to say, but all the twisted fairy tales, awakening sexuality often shown in terms of wolfen or beastly creatures , bloody roses and so on, become a little tedious after a while.

Read a little bit at a time though, this huge book should provide many hours of pleasure, though the quality of the individual pieces is extremely variable. The side-by-side depiction of the morbid and the lovely in this piece acquires an almost rhythmic, hypnotic cadence. I wasn't crazy about the ending though, in which a character we've never really met or heard a great deal about before shows up to "save the day", though again, this ending has much to do with Carter's intense and heavy use of symbolism, and is best understood in a rather non-realistic way.

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I feel like Angela Carter's stories are a bit like really rich chocolate truffles. One or two at a time are wonderful but eating thirty in a row will just make you sick. I made the mistake of reading straight through these stories and I just got sick of them by the end. Some of them were good, others not really at all. And some I'm not sure should really be qualified as stories since they seemed to be more thoughts or essays. There was also a lot of sex which got to be ridiculous with people, w I feel like Angela Carter's stories are a bit like really rich chocolate truffles.

There was also a lot of sex which got to be ridiculous with people, with animals, with fruit Ultimately, I wasn't that impressed with Carter as a writer. Feb 24, Christine rated it really liked it. Why am I only discovering Angela Carter now? Jul 21, Shane rated it it was amazing. Angela Carter was indeed the master of the short story during her short life, and I wished that I had read her stories earlier in my writing career for there is much to learn in her approach to the craft. In this collected work that compiles all of her short writing over a year period, we are introduced to a variety of styles, subjects, arrangements, voices and situations that led me to crown her the "magician of the short story.

The content then moves to the biographical where we get versions of the lives of Baudelaire and Edgar Alan Poe. The fusion of play, screenplay and prose is skillfully woven in the story of the movie director John Ford and his namesake, a Jacobean period dramatist. The most chilling pieces were the two stories on Lizzie Borden: Throughout, Carter evokes the senses, smell in particular, and her tendency to veer off into the macabre gives us liberal doses of sweat, vomit, feces and blood, all a bit much, but to be expected from a writer of gothic tales.

The research behind her writing, particularly in the historical pieces, is evident, as her fiction is always a spin off from the real story, and given the wide canvas, I suspect Carter actually enjoyed ferreting out the real stories before fictionalizing them, lending texture where the purely biographical is unable to.

And, as if to foreshadow her own early demise, there is the spectre of the grim reaper, a faceless man, who appears in many of her stories, blending in with the Gothic, but also making one wonder if the author suspected her own exit and pumped out these stories at a furious pace, leaving valuable lessons for practitioners of the short story to follow.

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Jul 23, DeAnna Knippling rated it really liked it. A collection of all of Angela Carter's tales. Each one of these stories is so dense as to be a novel packed up in a portmanteau. To unpack them is a great deal of work. For example, in order to understand the John Ford story, you have to know that there was both a director of Westerns named John Ford, and a playwright around Shakespeare's time named John Ford.

Or at least be willing to stop and research same. I can't give these five stars--the three unpublished stories at the end made me realize A collection of all of Angela Carter's tales. I can't give these five stars--the three unpublished stories at the end made me realize that she probably edited all her stories practically to death to make them that dense--but when I step back from the actual marks on the paper, the tales she's telling are wonderful, fascinating, and inventive.

I just wish she'd told them at their natural length. Oct 30, Orna Ross rated it really liked it. The world of an Angela Carter short story is a world at once fantastic and familiar. Tigers, werewolves and other beasts stalk through; Bluebeard, Red Riding Hood and Puss-in-Boots perform new, startling acts.

Hollywood, pantomime, the fairground, Shakespearean comedy all lend their forms to have them smashed up and put back together as something quite different.


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But through it all the feeling of familiarity is there, not because we have heard the tale or seen the show before, but because it is The world of an Angela Carter short story is a world at once fantastic and familiar. Burning Your Boats is the first in a series to be published of the collected works of Carter and it gathers together her four published short story collections, along with early stories and uncollected works.

She always claimed that what she wrote were not short stories but tales. Carter was not just interested in the moral or psychological function of fairy tales but also in the way they conveyed information about the material lives of those who invented and retold them: For this and her staking out of the taboo, she was labelled politically correct by some, dismissed as cultish and marginal by others. But many who looked askance while she was alive came to praise her when she died three years ago. For to attach the PC catchall to as wayward and wicked a writer as Carter is, of course, ridiculous.

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As for marginality, she once said: Let us keep the unconscious in a suitcase. And from start to finish her concerns remain the same: Each successive volume of stories in Burning Your Boats demonstrates not so much an author extending her range as a wild imagination giving form to itself. For that reason, it is not a book which you can read from beginning to end without succumbing to imaginative vertigo. Neither is it one you dip into, in the usual sense.

Adoro a Angela Carter. Algunos relatos, como 'El barco fantasam. May 09, Melanti rated it it was amazing Shelves: I really should have put a review on each of the collections in this omnibus separately. But, in my eagerness, I neglected to do so and now am writing one for the omnibus as a whole, since I can't help but see them in relation to each other. I love how the stories are arranged in more or less chronological order.

It really allows one to see how Carter's style improved and evolved over time. The first collection, Fireworks , is by far the weakest of the four and that is in part due to Carter strugg I really should have put a review on each of the collections in this omnibus separately. The first collection, Fireworks , is by far the weakest of the four and that is in part due to Carter struggling to find out exactly what her style is.

Then you have The Bloody Chamber , which is in its own way evolving even during the collection. The stories in the beginning are more straightforward fairy tale retellings - very little changed, no real motivations or choices added, but still managing to make me think of the stories in a different way.

Burning Your Boats: The Collected Short Stories

But by the end of the collection, Carter has added in the feminist twists that she is so famous for. It makes me think of the essay about McKillip in Fairy Tales Re-Imagined , where it's argued that choices were what differentiated the later Beauty from the early Beauty and were what allowed her to break free of the set fairy tale narrative. By the end of the collection, her characters are making their own choices, though in many ways those choices do still seem inevitable. Next up is Saints and Strangers , which was my favorite collection of the set.

There are re-tellings here - but they're not re-tellings of fairy tales, but of other stories and real people. What exactly was Lizzy Borden's motivation that morning?


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  • Why did Edgar Allen Poe write as he did? Stylistically, its much improved from Fireworks and even slightly better than The Bloody Chamber. The last is American Ghosts and Old World Wonders , which is a mix of fairy tale retellings, other story retellings, and non-retellings. I did love these as well, and would rank it just slightly behind The Bloody Chamber. Aug 10, Jennifer Ochoa rated it it was ok Shelves: I was destined to not like it. Beyond the fact that I rarely enjoy short stories, I also find Carter's style excessive, baroque, more imagery than story.

    I love minimalist writing and Carter is the at the absolute other end of the spectrum. I'm also burned out on fairy tale themes and most of these stories are evocative of them if not outright reimaginings of classic tales. Some of the stories I ended up skimming more than reading, I was that impatient with her writing. Normally, I'd give a boo I was destined to not like it. In all honesty, I only read this book because it's been sitting in my bookshelf unread for many years and I'm trying to pare down my collection. After reading The Bloody Chamber and a novel Heroes and Villians by Carter neither of which did much for me , I knew this one would end up in the "donate" pile.

    View all 3 comments. Apr 26, Mira rated it it was amazing Shelves: More people need to know about Angela Carter. Although these tales are filled with wolves, menstrual blood, sharpened teeth, burned flesh, you name it, there is no clear key to their horrors. Carter clearly eschewed Freudian nonsense just as surely as she rejects the quintessentially male notion that we make our destinies by "chucking paint at a wall". Many of these tale are relentlessly schematic, adorned by her snaky prose and sliced in bits by her strategic lacunae.

    Some even seem like a new genre: Altogether a dark, moving experience, and closing it with an optimistic meditation on aging called "The Quilt Maker" "shake it out and look at it again" was especially difficult to endure, knowing that Carter died at age A collection of stories that read at times like discourse on the idea of stories, deconstructed as they go - so at times difficult and laboured. Nov 14, Jean rated it really liked it Shelves: This book was a different kind of read for me. I believe that, for me, pondering books is a good thing.

    Probably would have given it a five had I read all the tales. Dec 28, WordsBeyondBorders rated it really liked it. Most pornographic of all confrontations. The sweet thunder of this purr shook the old walls, made the shutters batter the windows until they burst apart and let in the white light of the snowy moon. Tiles came crashing down from the roof; I heard them fall into the courtyard far below.

    The reverberations of his purring rocked the foundations of the house, the walls began to dance. The faery solitude of the place; with its turrets of misty blue, …………. That lovely, sad, sea-siren of a place! Nov 16, Patricia rated it really liked it Shelves: Jemisin consistently pairs fascinating character development with intense action, continuing a fantasy epic that demands your undivided attention.

    Jonathan Strange serves as apprentice to Mr. The page novel includes copious footnotes following one rabbit hole after the next. Though Rosie grows up in the shadow of a curse, she proves to be a fierce, courageous and spirited woman who seeks to save herself and her kingdom.

    This captivating tale delivers a refreshing adventure, revealing that female friendships and high-stakes action belong together in fantasy. Drawing heavily from Middle Eastern mythology, Throne of the Crescent Moon follows Doctor Adoulla Makhslood, a paunchy, past-his-prime ghul hunter drawn away from his impending retirement by a wicked plot brewing in the royal palace. Studios, surrounds the Doctor with a varied cast, including a resourceful older married couple, a shape-shifting tribeswoman with nothing to lose and an honor-bound Dervish warrior.

    This modern day Alice In Wonderland starts out quite charming, with the precocious Coraline Jones and her parents moving into a mansion full of quirky flat-mates and a talking cat. And somehow all three books were published between October and December of —just a little factoid to depress fans of Patrick Rothfuss and George R. It is kind of an epistolary story, except most of the story is written in prose.

    A Memory of Light gave us a satisfying ending to the epic high fantasy saga. Our heroes from the quiet village of Two Rivers and their motley cast of allies all get their moments to shine. Set in a post-nuclear-holocaust Africa, the novel follows a child of rape destined to become a powerful sorcerer. Trust us, Who Fears Death is necessary reading for the fantasy canon. The novel takes you back to her fantasy realm of Ketterdam, featuring a ragtag crew of outcasts who must pull off a major heist.

    The result is a fast-paced story that will keep you turning the beautifully designed pages for hours. Six of Crows stands on its own. Rowling In the s, the Harry Potter novels became the rare series read by fantasy fans and non-fantasy fans, book lovers and non-book lovers, basically everyone on planet Earth. Harry, Hermione and Ron captured our collective hearts even as they bickered and lost trust in each other. Harry comes to believe his dual nemeses at Hogwarts—Draco Malfoy and Severus Snape—are in direct league with Lord Voldemort, something he gets only partly right.

    The books grew up along with their characters and their readers, raising the stakes and emotions in the best-selling book series in history. A Storm of Swords by George R. Martin No author does Machiavellian political intrigue quite like George R. When one of our favorite characters dies, we fear for the next one. These names will remain iconic figures in fantasy literature long after many books on this list go out of print. With several narratives weaving in and out of the magical romance, Morgenstern expertly weaves a beautiful tapestry of a novel, that soars as high as the tents in the fictional circus.

    The City of Brass by S. Set in the 18th century, readers meet Nahri, a skilled con woman who swindles her way through life… until she makes a mistake of magical consequences. She summons a djinn warrior, and finds herself thrown into the magical, mythical world she never believed existed. And at the heart of that world, is the City of Brass, a place called Daevabad. Multi-POV narratives can be challenging to sustain even when all the characters are in the same story—doing it with six separate, barely-connected narratives is almost a magic trick.

    The Fifth Season by N. Jemisin The first book in N. The Fifth Season also boasts a complex protagonist who is a mother, gifting us with one of the most formidable and fascinating characters of the 21st century. The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson In exploring a shocking question—What happens if the hero fails and the villain reigns? It boasts all of the best fantasy elements: But Sanderson weaves those predictable elements into a breathtaking saga that promises twists every step of the way.

    When a young soldier groomed to take over the oppressive, military government decides to turn his back on the regime, he collides with a young scholar determined to save her brother. The story continues in A Torch Against the Night. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. And we got that plus a lot more: In the conclusion to the seven-book series J. An archetypal, alchemy-suffused coming-of-age tale set in a highly clever and lavishly realized alternate world, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is the kind of book you read over and over, simply because the culmination is so satisfying.

    A flawed piece of prose but a wonderful finale to a thoroughly marvelous concept. All those are in peak form in his masterwork, The Way of Kings , the first of his three-book-long-and-counting series The Stormlight Archive. Roshar is a world where magic is rare, but spren—the spirits of just about every object or idea—are common. A few magic items like soulcasters, shard blades and shard plates are remnants of a grander age. In nations like Alethkar and Jah Keved, light eyes are revered, while those with dark eyes remain a lower caste.

    The Way of Kings is told from the points-of-view of four loosely connected characters, but the main focus is on Kaladin, a darkeyed soldier betrayed by his light-eyed commander and sold into slavery.