Synopses & Reviews
In the tradition of Angela Carter, this luminous, spellbinding debut reinvents the stuff of myth.
Straying husbands lured into the sea by mermaids can be fetched back, for a fee. Trees can make wishes come true. Houses creak and keep a fretful watch on their inhabitants, straightening shower curtains and worrying about frayed carpets. A mother, who seems alone and lonely, may be rubbing sore muscles or holding the hands of her invisible lover as he touches her neck. Phantom hounds roam the moors and, on a windy beach, a boy and his grandmother beat back despair with an old white door.
In these stories, the line between the real and the imagined is blurred as Lucy Wood takes us to Cornwall’s ancient coast, building on its rich storytelling history and recasting its myths in thoroughly contemporary ways. Calling forth the fantastic and fantastical, she mines these legends for that bit of magic remaining in all our lives—if only we can let ourselves see it.
"A wonderfully written book, ironical, cerebral, elegant." Joyce Carol Oates, The New York Times Book Review
"She writes a prose that lends itself to magnificent set pieces of fastidious sensuality...dreams, myths, fairy tales, metamorphoses, the unruly unconscious, epic journeys, and a highly sensual celebration of sexuality in both its most joyous and darkest manifestations." Ian McEwan
"Carter not only switches her narrative into the wholly explicit but turns the passive predicament of the heroine into one in which the convention of female role-playing seems to have no part, only brisk and derisisve common sense, the best feminine tactic in a tight corner. The tales are retold by Angla Carter with all her supple and intoxicating bravura." The New York Review of Books
"She was, among other things, a quirky, original, and baroque styleist, a trait especially marked in The Bloody Chamber her vocabulary a mix of finely tuned phrase, luscious adjective, witty aphorism, and hearty, up-theirs vulgarity." Margaret Atwood, The Observer
From familiar fairy tales and legends Red Riding Hood, Bluebeard, Puss-in-Boots, Beauty and the Beast, vampires, werewolves Angela Carter has created an absorbing collection of dark, sensual, fantastic stories.
From familiar fairy tales and legends – Red Riding Hood, Bluebeard, Puss-in-Boots, Beauty and the Beast, vampires, werewolves – Angela Carter has created an absorbing collection of dark, sensual, fantastic stories.
This whimsical and spellbinding debut collection of stories creates fresh and contemporary tales of how magic and myth work in our everyday lives, as it mines the rich folklore and history of Cornwall.
About the Author
Angela Carter (19401992) wrote nine novels and numerous short stories, as well as nonfiction, radio plays, and the screenplay for Neil Jordan's 1984 movie The Company of Wolves, based on her story. She won numerous literary awards, traveled and taught widely in the United States, and lived in London.
Table of Contents
Diving Belles 1
Countless Stones 20
Of Mothers and Little People 39
Lights in Other Peoples Houses 54
The Giants Boneyard 90
Notes from the House Spirits 130
The Wishing Tree 147
Blue Moon 170
Some Drolls Are Like That and Some Are Like This 205