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The Obelisk Trilogy: Tropic of Cancer, Tropic of Capricorn, Black Spring (The Obelisk Trilogy)

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  72 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Henry Miller's collaboration with the Obelisk press in the 1930s produced three phenomenal works still much-loved to this day. The groundbreaking Tropic of Cancer published by Jack Kahane in 1934 after Anais Nin helped cover costs, its followup Tropic of Capricorn, finally printed in 1939, and Black Spring, a collection of vignettes and tales from 1936. These three works, ...more
Paperback, 427 pages
Published August 1st 2004 by
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Aug 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Read "Tropic Of Cancer" several times over the last two decades. Still my favorite book. The other two are also fantastic reads. Series broken into sections more by tone than chronology.
Oct 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
Couldn't stomach Black Spring anymore. I'll postpone it indefinitely.

Now, Miller's style is definitely intriguing: the man has found his own voice, his own niche, and his own path. He's not afraid to flaunt his perversities, nor is he too proud to demonstrate his own frailties. He's not didactic in any way, even if he believes in what he says 100%. He also hasn't got all the answers, but kind of tests his theorems and weeds out the useless bits of them. All in all, both Tropics were a trip to t
Dec 16, 2015 rated it it was ok
My copies are part of a matching set printed by Grove Press, inc. New York; Capricorn and Cancer both printed in 1961, Black Spring in 1963. These are handsome volumes with moderate quality paper and without dust jackets.

It is difficult to describe these books or to articulate, even to myself, what I think and how I feel about them. I will duck and cringe because of course I am not in favor of censorship, but never-the-less I can understand why these books had been banned. (The wikipedia articl
Feb 11, 2009 rated it liked it
When I first read Henry Miller, I put it down in disgust, unwilling to believe that a man could be saying anything important while wallowing in the gutter, both in language and figuratively in his writing. Still later I picked it up for some unknown reason, perhaps curiosity or boredom, after watching the movie Henry and June.
I was curious as to whether abnormal pleasures really did kill the taste for normal ones.
Miller was expanding our depth of field as human beings, without question. Today b
Jul 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: abandoned
This edition is not recommended because it is riddled with typos. For example, nearly every instance of "corner" is set as "comer" in the type and it is infuriating. Lots of other kerning issues, like it was a shitty OCR scan that nobody bothered to give a thorough proofreading. There is no excuse for the number of errors, probably about two dozen in just in *Tropic Cancer* and not including the other 2/3 of this edition.
Veronica Marie Lewis-Shaw
Jul 12, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: read-in-2011
I wouldn't go so far as to call Henry Miller a genius, and I think he sacrificed a great deal... what could have been classics are simply mediocre.

He does seem to obsess about women... understandable though, considering his contempt for them.

I may or may not come back to 'the tropics'... we shall see. I would like to think that there is something at least a little redeeming in his work... time will tell.
Henry Miller is a genius! His observations remind me of a composer. He is hearing the entire symphony. I never have so many words dancing around in my head, but do so far as senses go. Amazing writer!
Apr 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
The Obelisk Trilogy all together for your reading pleasure.
The block text and glossy print is confrontational, aggressive, and slightly glamorous in its simplicity. It's a sexy looking volume to add to your bookcase.
Rebecca Burns
Mar 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: re-reads
Black Spring is definitely the best of all. Need to re-read/
Oct 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Read Tropic of Capricorn. Very funny, very rude, sometimes sexist, sometimes rambles, spot on about how other groups/races are treated. Great stuff! Will get around to reading others. Do read!
Stephen G. Barr
Mar 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
The best of Miller's work in my opinion...raw, powerful and written with the precision of a diamond cutter.
Charity Finnestad
May 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
He's good, but Anais is better...
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Henry Miller sought to reestablish the freedom to live without the conventional restraints of civilization. His books are potpourris of sexual description, quasi-philosophical speculation, reflection on literature and society, surrealistic imaginings, and autobiographical incident.

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