Angela Carter Week – 8-15 June, 2014

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The Once Upon a Time Challenge is one of my favorite reading events of the year. Fairy tales, myth, folklore, fantasy, I am happy to read as many as possible. This year, Caroline from beautyisasleepingcat suggested we dedicate a week to Angela Carter, a writer who fits perfectly into this challenge. Her works include nine novels as well as collections of short stories, a book of essays, a volume of radio plays and two collections of journalism. We would love it if you could join us for this event, starting from Sunday, 8th June to the following Sunday, the 15th.

Some guidelines:

              – The event lasts for a week

          – Choose one of the two badges for your blog/website

          – You can read/listen (to) anything by Angela Carter

          – Leave a comment here or on Caroline’s blog (or both) at any time starting today until the last day of the event. We’ll have a Mr Linky set up when the event starts so you can link to your review.


If you want me to send you an email a day or two before we start, I am happy to do it, just make sure you leave a valid email address when you comment on my blog.

I have two books I am planning to read for this week, The Bloody Chamber – a collection of short stories, and a novel, Nights at the Circus. Apart from a short story here and there, I haven’t read anything substantial by this author and I’m very excited to start on both of these books.

Author Sarah Waters writes in an introduction to Nights at the Circus:

“Her theatrical, fabular style has much in common with that of the other great magic realists, Salman Rushdie and Gabriel Garcia Marquez; but she wrote, always with a distinctly feminist agenda determined to debunk cultural fantasies around sexuality, gender and class.

She helped stimulate an excitement about feminist writing and feminist publishing (she was hugely supportive, for example, of the founding of the women’s publishing house Virago Press, in 1979), and many of her literary preoccupations – the challenging of the cannon, the rewriting of fairy tale and myth, the imagining of female utopias and dystopias – lie at the heart of much feminist writing and thought from the 1970s and ‘80s.”

I hope you’ll join Caroline and I for this event and to make things a bit easier for you, here’s the list of Angela Carter’s novels and short story collections below so you can choose whichever appeals to you the most. You can find Caroline’s intro post here. See you in June!


Novels                                                                         Short story collections

Shadow Dance (1966)                                         Fireworks: Nine Profane Pieces (1974)

The Magic Toyshop (1967)                                  The Bloody Chamber (1979) 

Several Perceptions (1968)                                  The Bridegroom (1983) – uncollected short story

Heroes and Villains (1969)                                Saints and Strangers (1985)- in UK published as Black Venus

Love (1971)                                                                American Ghosts and Old World Wonders – 1993

The Infernal Desires of Doctor Hoffman (1972)            Burning Your Boats (1995)   

The Passion of New Eve (1977)                           Angela Carter’s Book of Fairy Tales (1995) – as editor

Nights at the Circus (1984)                                                    

Wise Children (1991)

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34 Responses to Angela Carter Week – 8-15 June, 2014

  1. Brian Joseph says:

    As I commented on Caroline’s blog I am tempted top join you. Carter sounds like such a fascinating writer. I just need to see how much business travel is in store for me over the next month.

    Either way I really look forward to lots of great commentary.

    Thanks for hosting.

  2. Caroline says:

    I’m so glad you made a list with all of her books. It’s useful for me as well.
    I forgot that Shadow Dance was her first. Another one I haven’t read it. I’ll either go for that or Love and hopefully American Ghosts and a radio play. Yay!

    • Delia says:

      I thought the list would be useful for people who may want to join us, to have a look and decide what appeals to them.
      It’s strange but in the preface to “The Bloody Chamber”, her fifth collection of short stories called “Burning Your Boats” is not mentioned. I wonder why, as the edition I have is from 2011 and the stories were published in 1995.
      It’s great we are planning on reading different books by her. I wonder what the other participants will choose.

  3. TJ says:

    Hi Delia, I will be joining you for this event. I have been planning to read Bloody Chambers, and now I have a good reason to finally do it.

    • Delia says:

      That’s really great, TJ, glad to have you along again. Sometimes we need a little push to finally read that book we’ve been postponing.
      We can compare thoughts on The Bloody Chamber. 🙂

  4. Vishy says:

    This is wonderful news, Delia! So awesome! I will definitely be joining and I can’t wait for June 8th to arrive! I loved ‘The Bloody Chamber’ when I read it last year. I can’t wait to read my next Angela Carter book. I will maybe pick a novel to read this time. I loved that passage by Sarah Waters that you have quoted. Love both the badges!

    • Delia says:

      That’s great, Vishy, I’m very happy you’re joining us. I’m curious to see what you’re going to read. I love the badges, too. 🙂

  5. This is a wonderful idea. I love Angela Carter’s writing and, though I have nothing new to read, there are many of her books that I’d love to pick up and read again.

  6. Priya says:

    Those badges are awesome. If Sarah Waters wrote about her, I’d definitely like her books. I’d love to join in, I must see if I can find American Ghosts and New World Wonders – sounds like my kind of book. 🙂

    • Delia says:

      I’m glad you like them, Priya, feel free to choose whichever you like the best. I’m happy to see you’d like to join the event. Are you a Sarah Waters fan? I loved The Little Stranger and Fingersmith and always wanted to read more of her books.
      I hope you find the books you want for Angela Carter Week. Looking forward to your reviews.

  7. Vasilly says:

    I may join you for this! I’m actually reading The Bloody Chamber right now. I’ll share this post with my followers on Twitter.

  8. Helen says:

    I still haven’t read anything by Angela Carter but I do have a copy of The Bloody Chamber, so I’d love to join you in June. The badges are both beautiful!

  9. Bellezza says:

    Oh, I love The Night Circus! And, I’ve never read anything by Angela Carter, so I’ll join in. Thanks for hosting, to you and Caroline.

    • Delia says:

      You’ve very welcome Bellezza, glad to have you with us for the event.
      I always confused these two, “The Night Circus” and “Nights at the Circus”, the names sound so similar it took me a while to realize which one was actually by Angela Carter. I liked “The Night Circus” but I didn’t love it, I’m hoping “Nights at the Circus” is better.
      Which book(s) are you planning to read?

      • Bellezza says:

        How foolish of me to confuse the two; you can tell I’m a novice when it comes to Angela Carter. I have no idea where to start. Probably it will be with whichever books our ridiculous library has. Still, I look forward to discovering her magical realism, her postmodern thoughts.

        • Delia says:

          It’s so easy to confuse the two titles, I still have to think about which is which.
          I hope your library will have plenty for you to choose from. 🙂

  10. I would love to do the Angela Carter week. She is not an author I have read so I’m going to my library site now to reserve a book. No doubt they have several.

    • Delia says:

      Hi and welcome. It’s great to see so many people interested in Angela Carter’s work. I hope you find a great selection at your local library. Looking forward to seeing your choices.

  11. TBM says:

    Wow! This sounds like a great event and she has three books on my 1001 list. I’m hoping to join. Thanks for co-hosting!

    • Delia says:

      That’s great news, TBM, so happy to have you join us! That 1001 list is going to get smaller. 🙂 I can’t wait to see what books you will read.

  12. Mel u says:

    I just read a story, “Black Venus” centering on Jeanne Duval, a mistres of Charles Baudelaire of mixed French and African ancestors. I also per a request from a reader listed Salmon Rushdie’s favorite Carter short stories.

  13. Delia says:

    That’s great Mel, I’ll visit your blog soon. It looks like you’re having a great start!

  14. Mel u says:

    “The Company of Wolves” – reworking of Little Red Riding Hood and an expanded edition of “Dining Out in Paris”

    Loving this event

    • Delia says:

      I’m glad you’re enjoying this Mel. Reading is always better with friends to discuss the books, isn’t it? I’m having a great time reading everyone’s reviews.

  15. Here’s my review of Nights At The Circus. Thanks for hosting this, I’ve really enjoyed taking part

    • Delia says:

      Thanks Cathy, I’ll come and read it on Sunday when I finish the book as well.
      I’m glad you enjoyed the event, perhaps you’ll join us again in the future.

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