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Donald

Pittsburgh, PA, USA | Member Since 2008

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  • The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Steven Sherrill
    • Narrated By Holter Graham
    Overall
    (688)
    Performance
    (644)
    Story
    (644)

    Five thousand years out of the Labyrinth, the Minotaur finds himself in the American South, living in a trailer park and working as a line cook at a steakhouse. No longer a devourer of human flesh, the Minotaur is a socially inept, lonely creature with very human needs. But over a two-week period, as his life dissolves into chaos, this broken and alienated immortal awakens to the possibility for happiness and to the capacity for love.

    Cathy says: "Full of surprises, delightfully unexpected"
    "Well written, poorly told"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break: A Novel?

    Well... In my humble opinion this isn't a story. I mean it's a situation, but not a story. What really happens? Sure there are events, but what is the central conflict that M must overcome? Isn't that the first part in the definition of a story. There must be conflict. The only conflict I see here is a mythical creature living in the American South trying to keep his job and get a girl. No event sends things into motion. It's just a series of everyday things that sometimes embarasses M and sometimes makes him happy. In the end, he is miserable...just like he was in the beginning.

    I'm okay with a literary novel that is slow through out, but the novel has to go somewhere. This thing doesn't in my opinion. And in general, I got bored several times. (mostly during the tons of introspection that occurs in between actual events)


    What was most disappointing about Steven Sherrill’s story?

    The fact that he crafted such a detailed character...and went nowhere whith him...


    What does Holter Graham bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He was a natural fit for the voice of this particular minotaur.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    It was well written. The guy (an English professor at Penn State, I believe, but don't quote me on that) obviously understands prose and how to construct beautiful sentences. And he obviously understands characterization. I understood M better than I ever wanted to by the end!


    Any additional comments?

    I just want to state that I know there are people who love htis book. I can even understand it from a purely technical perspective. It is well written. It just doesn't tell a story. A story resolves something in the end (usually the conflict mentioned above). This "story" doesn't go anywhere in my opinion, and as clever of a situation as putting a minotaur in current society is...and as clever as the athor is at using a mythological creature to point out short-comings in today's society, you need to give M something to do...something to solve before I will enjoy it.

    Again, this is all my humble opinion and take it for what it is worth. If you disagree and enjoy the book, then I am happy for you!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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