Valerie's Reviews > Cathedral

Cathedral by Raymond Carver
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May 07, 08

bookshelves: short-stories
Read in May, 2008

This is a compilation of strange, melancholy, and at times gut wrenching short stories by Raymond Carver. It's the first thing I've read by him, and I was surprised by how he could take a somewhat normal set of circumstances and twist them around until I was uncomfortable while still making them seem everyday. As if you'd see the world like that, too, if you just looked harder.
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message 1: by Kim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kim Have you started it? What do you think?


Valerie I'm only on the first story. I have to admit that because the book is "short" stories, I keep trying to jam some reading in when I only have a few minutes. Bad idea. I'm going to try to sit and concentrate and read one a day without distractions... I like the little that I've read, though.


message 3: by Valerie (last edited Apr 09, 2008 11:57AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Valerie I read the first story - Feathers - and I loved it! This is the first book (and short story) I've read by Carver, but I can already tell it won't be the last. The story had all the elements of a good read: two couples meeting for dinner, a noisy peacock, a dental mold of extremely crooked teeth, and an ugly baby, described as so:

It had a big red face, pop eyes, a broad forehead, and these big fat lips. It had no neck to speak of, and it had three or four fat chins. Its chins rolled right up under its ears, and its ears stuck out from its bald head. Fat hung over its wrists. Its arms and fingers were fat. Even calling it ugly does it credit.

I'm hooked!


message 4: by Kim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kim I'm glad you like him! I think I need to hit the library and get another collection, it's been too long since I've read him.


message 5: by Kim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kim I was surprised by how he could take a somewhat normal set of circumstances and twist them around until I was uncomfortable while still making them seem everyday.


Exactly.

You should read Short Cuts next and then watch the Altman film. I think it's an interesting mixture (Altman/Carver). I don't usually tote that line, but here....


Valerie I did recognize one of the stories that was in Cathedral as being featured in Short Cuts, but I didn't realize that there was a collection that was just the stories that were in the film. Do you know which came first? Were the stories in Short Cuts collected from different sources and then made into the film, or vice versa?


message 7: by Kim (last edited May 09, 2008 10:45AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kim Cathedral is 1984, Short Cuts, I think was released with the film. So, maybe Altman did a pick and chose of which ones he wanted and then they decided to release it?

not so sure...


Valerie Just added it to my "to-read" list. In the description, it said it was a movie tie-in.


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