Saturday 3 August 2019

Book Review: The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter (Fantasy/Horror/Short Stories)

Title: The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories
Author: Angela Carter

Publication Date: 2014 (1979)
Fantasy/Horror/Short Stories
Borrowed from the Library


From familiar fairy tales and legends - Red Riding Hood, Bluebeard, Puss in Boots, Beauty and the Beast, vampires and werewolves - Angela Carter has created an absorbing collection of dark, sensual, fantastic stories.

This collection is so highly lauded and has been on my wishlist for so long, I fear I may have raised my expectations to too lofty a level, because I felt deflated when I finally came to read it. The best story was the title piece. It was a fun Bluebeard retelling that worked well. As for the rest, I was mostly bored and just eager to get through them to the end. The stories seemed overworked in a literary sense, and they lacked the excitement and drive of other fairytale-inspired works I've read. The feminism angle, such as it was, did nothing for me, and I closed the finally page wondering why this work go so much attention. In conclusion, I am glad I finally crossed it off my list, but it's not a work I feel the need to reread or add to my home-library shelves. A 2.5 stars that rounds up to a three thanks to the opening tale.

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