Only the Animals

3.2
From award-winning novelist Ceridwen Dovey, a collection of linked short stories as innovative and beautifully written as Nam Le 's The Boat.

Ten tales are told by the souls of animals killed in human conflicts in the past century or so, from a camel in colonial Australia to a cat in the trenches in World War I, from a bear starved to death during the siege of Sarajevo to a mussel that died in Pearl Harbour. Each narrator also pays homage to an author who has written imaginatively about animals during much the same time span: Henry Lawson, Colette, Kafka, Virginia Woolf, Tolstoy, Günter Grass, Julian Moor, and others.

These tales are brilliantly plotted, exquisitely written, inevitably poignant but also clever and witty. They ask us to consider profound questions. Why do animals shock us into feeling things we ca n't seem to feel for other humans? Why do animals allow authors to say the unsayable? Why do we sometimes treat humans as animals, and chickens as humans? Can fiction help us find moral meaning in a disillusioned world?

Ceridwen Dovey is a prodigiously gifted storyteller, an insightful thinker, and a rose writer of great range. Each of the torylines is an opening to a new ay of considering the nature of iolence and the relationships between human and animal experiences of the world. Only The Animals will ask you to believe again, just for a moment, in the redemptive power of reading and writing fantasy.
Available Languages
Original Series
Year of the Publication
Publication Date
Published April 23rd 2014 by Hamish Hamiliton / Penguin Australia (first published 2014
Original Title of the Book
Only the Animals
Number of Pages
304

Community Reviews

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gave it

Only the stor of the bear and the dolphin I liked, as they were quite plausible and gave insight in de thinking of the human.

gave it

I would have loved for this ook to never end, because of course, I would happily commune with the animals until the day I die.

To be treated to an author who has made the assumption that animals have a far greater intelligence and insight than us, and yet still retain a deep love and compassion for us- the lesser species- has been a magnificent experience for me.

I will laugh at our mussell traits, remain in awe of the mighty cat, thirst for knowledge like the tortoise, dream of the hance to commune with a dolphin, and honour the deep loneliness we humans harbour in our souls, that only an animal companion can heal.

gave it

I particularly loved Colette 's cat, the hipster mussels and the beautiful story of the twin elephants watching their ancestors in the stars at night.

gave it

Mankind might dominate the world, but the nimals are the ones who remind us just how human we really are.This is not to say that the tories are n't infused with a onderful feelin of playfulness and fun.

As one of my favorite narrators from the stories comments, " It was at this time that he named me Plautus the Tortoise, after the Roman comic playwright who valued imagination and the fantastic above anything he could scavenge from real life. " These values could also be said to exemplify Ceridwen Dovey, and neither time nor custom can stale the infinite multitud of her stories.But the greatest strength of this collection of tories is the insight it gives into human nature, an insight that can only come from outside, an insight that only the animals can provide.

To take pleasure in pain, to derive strength from deprivation, is to be human. " I believe the power of stories lies in their capacity to encourage us to ask questions about our world, our ociety, and our selves.

With ONLY THE ANIMALS, Ceridwen Dovey has found an especially powerful means of asking questions about our humanity.

I 'll leave the last wor on this to Sprout the dolphin, who narrates the penultimate story in this marvelous literary menagerie: " Perhaps you should be asking yourselves different questions.

gave it

This is just an introduction to the curious, nusual and touching stories contained in Only the Animals by Ceridwen Dovey.

Published in 2014, Only the Animals is a catalogu of thirteen short stories concerning animals directly involved in human conflict.

Humanity in all its triumphs and failings is the central concern of this book, where the reader receives a unique glimps into these conflicts, via the varying perspectives of a collection of animals.Ceridwen Dovey ’ s collection of stories encompass around a century of death, war zones and conflict.

If you have a deepe appreciation for our grand masters of the written ord, this one will be somethin to draw you in.I also loved the added touch of the animal constellation images contained at the start of each short story opening page.

While humans do feature in this story collection, it is the animals that hold the microphone in this memoir.

The poe is tight but it does manage to convey as much as possible to the eader in a lon time frame.In Only the Animals, humanity is given the once over from the emarkable perspective of a collection of animals, in the capable hands of award winning author Ceridwen Dovey.

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