Og Maciel's Reviews > Selected Short Stories

Selected Short Stories by Franz Kafka
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it was ok
bookshelves: owned

Though I knew what "The Metamorphosis" was about I had never actually read Kafka before. It was one of those things that I had always meant to do but never managed to find the time and/or inspiration to get it done. So last month I came across this collection of some of his short stories and finally added it to the top of my reading list.

Most of the stories included in this book will give you a good taste of the paranoia and bizarreness that are usually associated with Kafka's style. "In the Penal Colony" is dark, "A Country Doctor" is a bit surreal and strange, "The Judgement" is just straight out odd with an ending that left me wondering if I had missed something, and "The Metamorphosis" is comical (despite what happens to Gregor Samsa, the main character, his family's attempt at contiuing a 'normal' life is amusing), entertaining and gross. Had this book included only these stories, I'd probably given this book a much higher rating.

My biggest issue with this book is with the inclusion of three stories, namely "Investigations of a Dog", "The Burrow" and "Josephine the Singer". These stories share the common trait that their main characters are animals talking about their personal lives, issues and paranoias. I felt that the stories were a bit repetitive (the character in "The Burrow" going over and over his plans on how to check all the compartments on his home, or the dog asking "Whence does the Earth procure its food?") and just too long. I'm sure that if you're a big Kafka scholar and enjoy looking for examples of how his stories are filled with themes of paranoia and psychological conflicts, then you'll definitely enjoy these stories. For me they were boring and no matter how hard I tried to find the beauty in them, I almost gave up on the entire book many times.
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Reading Progress

August 30, 2015 – Started Reading
August 30, 2015 – Shelved
August 30, 2015 – Shelved as: owned
August 30, 2015 –
page 91
26.3% "First time reading Kafka. Finished the first 2 stories but I think I need more time to get an opinion formed"
August 31, 2015 –
page 216
62.43% "Other than the two most famous stories, "The Metamorphosis " and "The Penal Colony", I'm not really impressed yet... but I'm hoping that things will improve soon."
September 1, 2015 –
page 256
73.99% "I nearly gave up while reading "Investigations of a Dog"..."
September 5, 2015 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-2 of 2 (2 new)

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message 1: by Devon (new)

Devon In the Penal Colony was always one of my favourites. Not sure if it's in this collection but it's definitely worth your time.

message 2: by Og (new) - rated it 2 stars

Og Maciel Devon wrote: "In the Penal Colony was always one of my favourites. Not sure if it's in this collection but it's definitely worth your time."

It is and I agree that it was one of the best stories so far :)

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