11 November 2015

Kafka and Oldhammer

I only popped out for half hour, but it feels like months.

Anyway, apart from dodging painting and collecting like a pro, I've been spending time in the kitchen learning more about cooking like a vegan. Quality stuff - I've got lentil loaf coming out of my ears...

But, in between my kitchen chemistry and real life stuff, I have dived into a bit of Kafka. I picked up two books in a secondhand gaff, The Trial and The Castle, and it's the latter of the two I'm currently reading. What has struck me is the atmosphere of the novel: it reminds me of some of the old WFRP scenarios and bits and pieces from WD published for the game. The basic premise as I see it to date is that the protagonist is called to a village to undertake land-surveying, but there has effectively been an admin error and he needn't have bothered. The snow-shrouded village has a castle in it, but access to it is seemingly almost impossible (not physically, but in principle). Despite not really needing to survey anything he is still able to remain in the village but as an employee of the invisible authorities represented by the castle. I'm about a third of the way through and it's a mind bender - the protagonist struggles to be accepted in the village and even though seemingly employed to the castle is unable to gain access, which itself is becoming a burning desire for him. Again, it's the atmosphere that puts me in mind of the encroaching weirdness of chaos in the Warhammer Old World.

That's all I've got to say at the moment. I'll keep on reading.


  1. Fascinating post! The Castle is perhaps my favourite book... but I've never thought about it in relation to Warhammer. I think you're quite right that there's a correspondence... the Middle-European cityscapes, the hidden agendas, and the zany characters. Perhaps its the sense of humour that's most comparable. Both Kafka and Warhammer have a patina of seriousness -- beneath which are a lot of hilarious jokes.
    Great post!

    1. I think you've summed it up there Matt - weird stuff ain't it!