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Kafkaesque: Stories Inspired by Franz Kafka Paperback – November 1, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


“All of the works collected in Kafkaesque prove both edifying and entertaining.... A fine, intelligent, and exquisitely bizarre collection of fiction.”
New York Journal of Books

“Eclectic, mind-blowing collection”
Publishers Weekly

“A delight to read.... [T]he extremely varied and entertaining stories [Kafkaesque] contains help clarify Kafka’s literary legacy.”

“...a surpassingly excellent anthology in its own right. An ideal introduction, as the stories capture the strangeness, wonder, despair, and humour which Kafka’s work exemplifies.”
SF Site

“Grade: A.”
SciFi Magazine

“So very of my favourite anthologies.”

“A smart and provocative anthology...superb.”

“It’s an extremely rich and potent collection....”
Functional Nerds

About the Author

James Patrick Kelly is the Hugo, Nebula, and Italia award–winning author of Burn, Think Like a Dinosaur, and Wildlife. He is a member of the faculty of the Stonecoast Creative Writing MFA Program at the University of Southern Maine. He has co-edited a series of anthologies with John Kessel, described by the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction as “each surveying with balance and care a potentially disputed territory within the field.” Kelly is the technology columnist for Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine and the publisher of the e-book ’zine Strangeways.

John Kessel is a Nebula, Sturgeon, and Locus award winner and the author of Corrupting Dr. Nice, Good News From Outer Space, and The Pure Product. He teaches courses in science-fiction, fantasy, and fiction writing at North Carolina State University. His criticism has appeared in Foundation, the Los Angeles Times Book Review, the New York Review of Science Fiction, and Science Fiction Age.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 283 pages
  • Publisher: Tachyon Publications (November 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616960493
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616960490
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,998,112 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Simon Barrett 'Il Penseroso' on October 20, 2013
Format: Paperback
Let's face it, Kakfa is seriously sexy. Kafka seriously sexy? Yup. He's beckoning a generation towards the wide open spaces of literature. Can they make it? An odd bunch, these 'cross-genred' (Kit Reed's awkward term - not to be confused with transgendered!) hommagistes. (The rather earth-bound preface helpfully points out how the eligible stories (of which there was an embarras de choix, apparently) fall into three distinct categories.)

Pretension? Parasitism? Parody? Whatever, a gratifying objet to have on one's bookshelf. To read, not so much. Probably best to home in on an author one already has a feel for, in my case the recently discovered Carol Emshwiller, but I was also pleased to make the acquaintance of Terry Bisson and Eileen Gunn. The editors have a point, in their Secret History of Science Fiction, about ghettoisation; these authors (and Reed, not included here) had not previously disturbed my radar. Though maybe there's a reason for that

Three hits out of eighteen (Tamar Yellin I knew already) cannot pull this above OK, though Rudy Rucker at least reads Kafka in the original and has a probably valid point to make about it, and Jeffrey Ford is wittily meta. The Philip Roth, though, is distinctly ho-hum. (Imagine a similar piece of whimsy about Shakespeare. Literature? Hah.) How low is Roth's star set to sink? Is he even dead yet? Nope? Whoops! Neither fish nor fowl, neither fit to be taken seriously nor out-and-out escapism, these essays in 'literature lite' made me squirm
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