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The Meowmorphosis - a Review
Quirk Classics, famous for giving new life to classic works of fiction, has done it again. The Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka, has now been transformed into The Meowmorphosis.
Franz Kafka was a Jewish writer born in Czechoslovakia in 1838. Most of his works were published after his death in 1924. The Metamorphosis was a rather depressing work of literature in which the main character awakens one morning to find that he has turned into a cockroach.
Coleridge Cook, a writer of fantasy novels under a different name, teams up with Franz Kafka to put a new face on this tale of nightmarish insanity. How much more interesting, though still just as terrifying, when the main character wakes up to find himself changed into an adorable, fluffy kitten. No one loves cockroaches, but everyone loves a kitten. Right?
What was Gregor's reaction when he found himself transformed into a kitten? He was understandably freaked out a bit and he refused to come out of his room. Thank goodness his door was locked and no one could enter his room and see him in this unthinkable state. He had an immense amount of trouble learning how to move around. At first, his family understood his words when he yelled through the closed door.
His boss came to see why he was late for work: Gregor was never late for work. Out of fear of losing his job, though how he would manage to work as a traveling salesman while a cat I don't know, he managed to open the door to explain his current situation. Surely his boss would understand. But by the time he managed to open the door all they could hear when Gregor spoke was meowing. His boss fled the house when he saw what Gregor had become.
Gregor had been the main breadwinner in his family. Now what were they going to do? Out of familial affection or some sense of devotion, his family cared for him. They didn't allow him free run of the house, but kept him locked up in his room – a miserable existence for a feline who longed to go outside to chase critters and lay in the sun. Day after day after day this continued; the only member of his family that he was allowed to see was his sister, the one who fed him. His dad turned violent at the mere sight of his now feline son and his mother broke down into tears every time she looked upon him.
While kept locked up in his room, his cat instincts only continued to grow stronger and stronger until they took him over completely and he no longer had a desire to return to his human form. One day he managed to sneak out of his room and their place of residence and found himself outside – in the snow. His cat instincts were in full control now and he met another cat, Josef K, who had once been a human. He soon met many more felines who were once human (apparently this happened frequently) and wanted nothing more than to be accepted by them for who he now was. Amazingly, Josef K could tell all about his previous life by the way he now walked, by the angle at which he carried his tail, and by the quivering of his whiskers. They put him on trial and find him guilty, though guilty of what he wasn't sure. He was afraid of being put to death, but they sent him back to his family – a family he was convinced didn't want anything more to do with him.
The Meowmorphosis has given me a new love and appreciation for my adorable kitties. I don't believe that their souls are in the same state of torment as the souls of the cats we meet in The Meowmorphosis. Is this story a look at the tormented souls of cats? Or is it a look at the tormented soul of Franz Kafka?
If you want to know the rest of the story, you will have to read it yourself. This book, sent to me free of charge by Quirk Classics, is worth reading, though preferably not on a bleak and depressing day. The ending could be taken either of two ways. One way might make you laugh, the other way is kind of depressing. It just depends on how you look at it. If you would like your own copy of The Meowmorphosis, I have included a link below from Amazon.
Content copyright © 2013 by Lisa Binion. All rights reserved.
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