Originally Posted by paola
I definitely have to agree - in fact it is probably one of the stories I liked best, and also very contemporary in spirit.
I have a general question: I did find all the names (and surnames) quite bizarre and at times funny, but as a non native speaker I am not quite sure how they sound to more trained ears, and wonder whether they convey any specific nuances in tone to those of you whose first language is English.
The names were definitely silly sounding. I knew that some of that was intentional, but I also wondered how much of that was common to British typical names and of that time-period compared to American modern names. So it wasn't just an English as a first language question.
Actually, I was initially concerned about the content of the short stories just because of the title Beasts and Super-Beasts
, and the fact that animals is a common theme. Not that I don't like animals (says she with the cat avatar)... I didn't know what to expect since I wasn't sure how the title and animals were going to relate to high society in Edwardian England. Well, the animals weren't gun-toting, vodka-drinking, talking cats like Behemoth in The Master and Margarita
. I liked that the stories really focused on the humans, and the animals were a device to help advance the satire. Sometimes the animals were minor in the background, and sometimes they were more prominent.
I need to refresh myself with the stories because it's been too long since I read them. I enjoyed the stories more than I expected to, although I read them just a few at a time. I even recommended them to a friend. I started to read The Chronicles of Clovis
, and I'll go more slowly with that collection. The ones that stick that I particularly remember are The Open Window, The Story-Teller, The Byzantine Omelette and Tobermory (although I did not like the ending of that one!).