The imagery Snyder employs is decidedly more graphic than that found in the fairy tales most readers are accustomed to: "Marion shook with fear...Richard's anguished cry had released her from Fiona's spell and now there was blood on her sheets, blood on the sleeves of her nightdress, and on her pillow was laid the body of her murdered nephew and a silver blade" (Snyder, Maiden 19). The Grimms' most graphic image is of the girl weeping on the stumps of her hands: "Then she extended both her hands and let [her father] chop them off. The devil came a third time, but she had wept so long and so much on the stumps that they too were all clean" (119-120). The maiden's blood is so pure it leaves no stain.
Carter was later to come under attack for not busting more taboos than she did ("She could never imagine Cinderella in bed with the Fairy God-mother," wrote Patricia Duncker, for example). But such criticisms seem wide of the mark. Her work caused shock waves when it appeared, and it continues to shock. The Bloody Chamber, which has been extensively studied in universities over the past decade, apparently elicits furious hostility from a significant number of students, who are outraged when they recognise the bedtime stories of their childhood newly configured as tales of sex and violence. But as Carter said, "I was taking ... the latent content of those traditional stories and using that; and the latent content is violently sexual." It is also true that her imagination had a fierce and appetitive quality, turbofuelled by Gothic themes, particularly in her youth. (Later, after she had published Nights at the Circus, she was to comment, "You know, sometimes when I read my back pages, I'm quite appalled at the violence of my imagination. Before I had a family and stuff.")
Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber - the Guardian