Customer Reviews

13
3.2 out of 5 stars
The Castle (Oxford World's Classics)
Format: PaperbackChange
Price:$10.17 + Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on September 13, 2009
Format: Paperback
This version, like the original manuscript, ends mid-sentence. Kafka was dying of tuberculosis. An infection secondary to TB developed in his throat, making eating too painful for him, and he died of starvation at a sanatorium near Vienna. A lot of the negative reviews here refer to how unfinished the book seems, or how morbid and dreary. And even good reviews emphasize the bureaucracy primarily as a symbol of social conditions. Kafka, a Czech Jew living through WW I, who had symptoms of hypochondria before he contracted TB, (which was often fatal in those times) spent many years convalescing. He was unable to earn a living to support himself, and virtually unknown as a writer, and probably thinking of death a lot, and his inability to make a living, or stay healthy, or find meaning in his short life. I find this biographical background essential to appreciating the Castle. I understand the bureaucracy of the castle to be a metaphor for illness, as well as for society, and existential angst. Please don't let anyone you know read the book (or review it!) without knowing his background.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 12, 2013
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Kafka and I have something in common: neither one of us finished this book. I really wanted to like this book. I think the dense prose and lengthy dialogue without a paragraph break got to be too much for me. It's one of those books I appreciate, but that I'm not anxious to pick up and read. The concept is fascinating. But I feel like I got the message fairly early on. The story itself was kind of dull. I stopped at page 165. I'm guessing it's more of the same: K struggles against an unknown bureaucracy, refuses to give up, he makes no progress, in fact, things get worse, and then it ends mid-sentence. But don't necessarily take my word. My most here rave about the book.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 15, 2014
Format: Paperback
I read the book when I was 22. Twenty years later, I can still feel the resonance of the feelings that I empathized from the book--why I should say that I had absorbed those feeling and they had been part of me ever since, something that sent me into sudden bursts of deep depression. Other books have intrigued me, bewildered me, left me thinking or even obsessed for days or months, but none have ever touched me as much.

Not recommended for people with weak hearts or feeble minds though.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Hmm. How do I feel about this book?

I understand that Kafka is known for this particular kind of storytelling. Heck, we now have the word 'Kafkaesque' and its definition draws from how he did his stories.

So I started this book, and at first everything was okay. But then things really, really, really got grating. I'm not kidding you. You can only read so many instances of how our main character is frustrated at every turn by this crazy bureaucracy before you're wishing that the story would just MOVE THE EFF ON.

Now, Kafka died before he could finish this book, so I can forgive the ending a little bit. But still, the whole book can be very grating, and will only appeal to some people. Many things are unexplained, and some of the things that happen in the book are just too surreal, like K taking up with the lovely young lady who has a... really weird situation. If the point of this story was to frustrate and befuddle with no real conclusion, then Kafka pulled it off.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on July 4, 2013
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
liked it a lot.

not absurd as the "Trial" is, but symbolic, which I liked a lot.

a great piece of work.

I find it to be a continuation of the "Cathedral" chapter.

Olympia
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on July 19, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I love Kafka, I really and truly do. However, I think out of all of his work this is by far the most flawed. If you are an English major you will most likely stumble across it and have to analyze it, but short of that I would stick to some of his other works, which are notable in their own right.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on September 18, 2014
Format: Paperback
Kafka is an important addition to anyone considering themselves well read. This particular work is important not only in the literary or psychological sense - it is important to political economy as well.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on March 13, 2015
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
One of my favorite books of all time
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 2, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
It is a good book.
I just think they should change the cover.
I would like a german version too.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
2 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Because it's unfinished, it comes across more as a manuscript or rough draft than an actual novel. In The Metamorphasis and The Trial, Kafka focused on the main characters, but here he drones on and on about the ins and outs and the over all maze-like beaurocracy (sp?) of the castle. It gets redundant. And if that's not bad enough, a civil servant lectures the hero in full blown metafictional hogwash about the mechanics of castle politics for a whole chapter, while the hero, Josph K, is super tired, and just wants to fall asleep! I feel your pain, dude. The version i read had no ending and stopped mid sentence.
33 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
     
 
Customers who viewed this also viewed
The Castle
The Castle by Edwin Muir (Paperback - December 15, 1998)
$12.24

Franz Kafka: The Complete Stories
Franz Kafka: The Complete Stories by Nahum Norbert Glatzer (Paperback - November 14, 1995)
$12.86

The Trial
The Trial by Franz Kafka (Paperback - October 11, 2011)
$7.95
 
     

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.

Your Recently Viewed Items and Featured Recommendations 
 

After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in.