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Silk Paperback – Nov 5 2002


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Roc (TRD); Reprint edition (Nov. 5 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451459008
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451459008
  • Product Dimensions: 20.7 x 13.5 x 2.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 318 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (102 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,005,513 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Daria sat by herself on the sidewalk, fat spiral bound notebook open across her lap, back pressed firmly against the raw brick, pretentiously raw brick sand-blasted for effect, for higher rent and the illusion of renewal, the luxury of history. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Yanna on Jan. 8 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
What an unfortunate train wreck this turned out to be.

I wanted to knife every single character in this silly novel and just kept wondering why even they themselves continued on. People that miserable tend to (thankfully) off themselves, no? Miserable, useless to society, thinking that dying your hair an unnatural colour or singing in a "punk" band makes you somehow more human or relevant than those of us who don't earn a living busking in the gutter or working at some minimum wage coffee shop past our teen years.

Just horrible on every count. I keep reading in the negative reviews that Kiernan is a better writer than this garbage, but I don't think I can give her a second chance.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 1 2004
Format: Paperback
Every cliche possible is dusted off for this lame story. Based on the reviews I was expecting something really intriguing, but this was just silly, trite, and tedious.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kieri on Jan. 6 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Silk has a permanent home on my bookshelf next to Poppy Z. Brite's Lost Souls. I've read them both twice, to be fair, and don't really intend to read them again.
Perhaps I just don't understand this brand of "horror." Throughout the entire story, I wondered what I was intended to think of the characters. Was I supposed to like them? Was I supposed to care about them at all? If so, then I must have missed something. All I saw were a bunch of boring Gen X-ers in a small town who died in some bizarre, but ultimately inexplicably dull ways for no apparent reason. If there was a point to this book, other than "Some stuff that happened to these people I once knew," I couldn't find it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on Nov. 4 2002
Format: Paperback
Very disappointing read, and don't get me wrong, I like gothic literature and knew what I was in for. The problem with this particular gothic novel is that it's really only a short story strung out over hundreds of pages. Very slow, but I kept hoping it was going to build into a real crescendo. Unfortunately, even the ending is slow and a let-down. I love Caitlin's writing and the ins and outs of the characters like Spyder and Robin kept me going till the end, but then when it was finished, I was like, what was the point? No monsters...not even a villain to speak of! It's just words on a page. It's like my brother jumping out of a closet saying boo! Not really scary, just kind of there. I give it two stars for writing style, but if you're looking for plot, look elsewhere.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 19 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
After reading Kiernan's short fiction (most of which is astounding) and the many good reviews this books has received, I was really very sorry to find Silk near impossible to take. The characters are broadly written caricatures, Goth kid cliches in a Goth cliche universe, interchangeable and utterly forgettable. The writing sways from brilliant to boring, from perfection to slash, sometimes within the same line. The story itself only begins to exist somewhere around the halfway mark, then steamrolls toward an ending neither satisfying nor believable.
Kiernan has proven herself a far better writer than this novel indicates. Here, her work falls into a pit of Goth subculture cliches. By page 15, all are present--the strange obsession with hair and hair dye descriptions (each character can be told from the rest by his or her hair color and quality), Tom Waits, The Cure, Nosferatu, boring drug use, and a character named Byron. All of which would be fine had Kiernan raised even one of her characters out of the blandness and made him/her real. Unfortunately, the next two hundred pages are just more of the same. When the story does actually begin, the reader is too sick of the characters to care.
Silk - a novel about hair dye, Tom Waits, and spooky posturing; a sophomoric mix of embarassingly overwrought and brilliantly poetic prose; a heartless, shapeless story crammed into a black lace costume; a story Poppy Brite would have written better; a misguided attempt by a writer who is capable of so much more.
If you are new to Kiernan, read her short story collections. Their praise, I'm sure, is far more deserved than that of this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Michael Toland on May 25 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I've been dipping my toes into Goth fiction a bit recently. Started with Poppy Z. Brite's Lost Souls, which I found reasonably entertaining but not the earthshattering experience others did. I felt her personal obsessions (Goth culture, gay sex, explicit violence) got in the way of her storytelling. So instead of reading another Brite I turned to her friend Caitlin Kiernan. I read most of the reader comments here at Amazon and got the impression that Kiernan's Silk would be a very different kind of book than Lost Souls, indeed, it sounded more immediately appealing.
Alas, I'm coming away from this even more unsatisfied than I was after finishing Lost Souls. It's not that it's not well written - for the most part it is. While a bit choppy in spots I found Kiernan's style much more appealing than her buddy Brite's. She mixes her pop culture references in naturally instead of intrusively. She has a strong sense of place with her Birmingham setting, and characterization is obviously a strong point for her. The fact that the first 3/4 of the book are devoted to character development and nothing really happens until, oh, page 265 or so, doesn't bother me in and of itself - it's hardly the first book to do that (hell, if you want to get technical, Anne Rice spent two whole novels doing character development before getting the actual plot started in Queen of the Damned). What bothers me is that I find the characters so enormously unappealing. They're all self-absorbed 20somethings proudly and defiantly wrapped up in their own pain and dysfunction. I couldn't find any sympathy in me, much less empathy, for any of them, not even Spyder, who was horribly abused as a child. Every time Daria lost her temper over her junky boyfriend I wanted to slap her.
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