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Black Venus [Kindle Edition]

Angela Carter
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

Print List Price: £7.99
Kindle Price: £5.49 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Book Description

Extraordinary and diverse people inhabit this rich, ripe, occasionally raucous collection of short stories. Some are based on real people - Jeanne Duval, Baudelaire's handsome and reluctant muse who never asked to be called the Black Venus, trapped in the terminal ennui of the poet's passion, snatching at a little lifesaving respectability against all odds...Edgar Allen Poe, with his face of a actor, demonstrating in every thought and deed how right his friends were when they said 'No man is safe who drinks before breakfast.'



And some of these people are totally imaginary. Such as the seventeenth century whore, transported to Virginia for thieving, who turns into a good woman in spite of herself among the Indians, who have nothing worth stealing. And a girl, suckled by wolves, strange and indifferent as nature, who will not tolerate returning to humanity.



Angela Carter wonderfully mingles history, fiction, invention, literary criticism, high drama and low comedy in a glorious collection of stories as full of contradictions and surprises as life itself.


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Review

"The "radicalised" Carter tells her tales of terror ferociously, with black brilliance. Black Venus is shot with dazzling lightning. It is thunderous and magnetic; irresistible even when it seems most repellent" Courrier Mail "Displays the superbly witchy Angela Carter at her best... Whatever her subject Miss Carter writes like a dream - sometimes a nightmare. And as the voices call out, the images blaze, one is saved from an excess of fantasy by earthy realism, a sudden bark of humour" Sunday Telegraph

Book Description

Eight short works of fiction by one of Britain's greatest and most original writers.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 341 KB
  • Print Length: 98 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1409042146
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital; New Ed edition (30 Sept. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009EQG7KS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • : Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #276,961 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Angela Carter was born in 1940. She lived in Japan, the United States and Australia. Her first novel, Shadow Dance, was published in 1965. Her next book, The Magic Toyshop, won the John Llewllyn Rhys Prize and the next, Several Perceptions, the Somerset Maugham Award. She died in February 1992.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Extravagant fantasy meets earthy realism 26 Sept. 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Black Venus is a slim collection of short stories that appeared in various publications between 1977 and 1982. Although one of her lesser known works it, nonetheless, allows Angela Carter to display her usual expertise at playing the role of master entertainer pulling the strings on her bizarre, exotic and decadent characters. Her extravagant style is never allowed to drift into sentiment or excessive fantasy by her use of earthy metaphors, ancient bawdy humour and exploration of exotic and cruel desires.
Carter takes the reader straight into the world of Baudelaire's syphilis ridden mistress as she voluptuously and resentfully dances for her poet inspiring him to write his infamous Les Fleurs du Mal. Edgar Allan Poe waits for his bejewelled and theatrical mother to return from death as he sits plagued by the ghosts of his wife. The story of the Golden Herm, a hermaphrodite languishing in an English wood and lustfully pursued by the hairy and perverse Puck, is filled with dazzlingly images that flaunt Angela Carter's command of the English language and its literary traditions. Lizzie Borden restlessly sits in a house full of locked rooms, beset by shapeless terrors and the relentless Massachusetts summer and on the verge of committing murder.
There is an uneven quality in the overall collection as some of the stories are more in the vein of entertaining fables that can suffer from comparison with the richness and exquisite prose found in the best tales Black Venus has to offer. Nor does Black Venus quite reach the heights of more famous works such as Love or Nights at the Circus but the stories contain more than enough reading pleasure to satisfy and delight fans and newcomers alike.
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