The Mookse and the Gripes discussion

Author Chat > Angela Carter

Comments Showing 1-7 of 7 (7 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Lee (new)

Lee Heads-up for anyone interested:

message 2: by Hugh (new)

Hugh (bodachliath) | 3164 comments Mod
I have just been watching it - a lovely tribute!

message 3: by Lee (new)

Lee Excellent!

Nadine in California (nadinekc) | 203 comments Hugh wrote: "Angela Carter (1940-1992). English novelist, poet, essayist and journalist.


Shadow Dance (1966)

The Magic Toyshop (1967)

[book:Several Percepti..."

Thanks for compiling this list, Hugh! I discovered Angela Carter by serendipity - pulled Nights at the Circus off the library shelf for no particular reason, and it turned out to be one of my all-time favorite novels. Read Wise Children next with almost equal delight, and bought The Bloody Chamber to read next. I'm reading her books gradually because I don't want to run through them too fast. I had no idea that I've only read her last two novels - did her work change over time?

message 6: by Hugh (last edited Aug 16, 2018 03:12AM) (new)

Hugh (bodachliath) | 3164 comments Mod
Since I added the bibliography, it has been nagging me that I have not said any more about my own experiences of reading Angela Carter. She was a uniquely imaginative talent, and an inspirational writer, but she was never very far from courting controversy.

I have read all of the novels and all of the collected stories (at least all the ones in Burning Your Boats) but some of them were read 15 to 25 years ago and I would probably have a lot more to say if I reread them. My favourites were Wise Children and Nights at the Circus, also the Bloody Chamber period of the short stories (the complication is that because I read the whole anthology in one go I have difficulty distinguishing the collections). I found The Infernal Desire Machines incomprehensibly baffling, but I suspect I would enjoy rereading it, and The Passion of New Eve was almost as tough. The early novels are less clear in the memory, but I did like The Magic Toyshop and I remember more about Heroes and Villains and Love just because I read them more recently.

The BBC documentary is extraordinary, and might just convince me to respect the BBC again - their approach to political balance and so-called experts has been pretty indefensible for the last few years. There were some wonderful clips of her participating in book discussions - she was waspish and mischievous and must have made many enemies, and this may help to explain why she never achieved a Booker shortlisting.

The one book I must still read is The Sadeian Woman, which sounds very interesting. When I retire, I may try and reread the whole lot in sequence!

message 7: by Hugh (new)

Hugh (bodachliath) | 3164 comments Mod
Nadine wrote: "... I had no idea that I've only read her last two novels - did her work change over time?"

Yes - she was a very versatile and creative writer. The first few novels were fairly conventional narratives. Heroes and Villains is a bleak post-apocalyptic fantasy, and both this and Love were influenced by radical late 60s politics. The Infernal Desire Machines is surreal, trippy and very much a period piece. The Passion of New Eve is very popular in feminist circles, but is also a pretty difficult read.

back to top