In Franz Kafka’s original novella The Metamorphosis the main character Gregor Samsa awakens one morning to discover that he has been inexplicably transformed into a monstrous vermin with insect-like qualities. His predicament is never explained as the tale unfolds. He is faced with adjusting to his new body and habits as he becomes a disgusting burden for his family.
In this new tale Coleridge Cook takes Kafka’s novella and gives it a cute little twist. Instead of mysteriously becoming an ugly insect-like creature, Gregor awakens to find that he is now a cute-as-a-button kitten in The Meowmorphosis. Being cute and adorable in this “literary re-mix” doesn’t make it any easier on Gregor as he is still a burden on his family.
This month we will be reading and discussing this adorably twisted story. As I think back on Kafka’s original I find I’m very curious to see how a cute kitten instead of a disgusting insect-like creature fairs with Gregor’s family. True, in the original tale they had every right to be disgruntled, but I don’t remember them being a very nice lot. I’m also wondering if Cook gives any hints or insight as to how the transformation comes about or leaves it as much of a mystery as Kafka.