Award-winning author, narrator, and screenwriter Neil Gaiman personally selected this book, and, using the tools of the Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX), cast the narrator and produced this work for his audiobook label, Neil Gaiman Presents.
A few words from Neil on The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break: "When Steve and I talked about the ideal voice for M, he suggested Holter Graham….because 'Holter’s handling of the Minotaur’s grunt was PERFECT. Exactly what I heard in my head.'"
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. "Sherrill also insinuates other mythological beasts - the Hermaphroditus, the Medusa - into the story, suggesting how the Southern landscape is shadowed by these myths. The plot centers around the Minotaur's feelings for Kelly, a waitress who is prone to epileptic fits. Does she reciprocate his affections? As the reader might expect, the course of interspecies love never does run smooth." (Publishers Weekly) Steven Sherrill created the artwork used for the audiobook edition of The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break.
To hear more from Neil Gaiman on The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break, click here, or listen to the introduction at the beginning of the book itself.
©2000 Steven Sherrill (P)2011 John F. Blair Publisher
I was about half way into the audiobook and wondering what the story was all about. But I decided to persevere to the end. I was already planning my review, "I missed the point". But, the point was made very succinctly at the end of the story. And then I understood -
This is a modern day fable, complete with a moral at the end of the story. It's about being different and how people fear that which doesn't fit into the norm.
One of the problems for me was the narrator, Holter Graham. He did great mooing sounds as the minotaur and distinguished well between voices. However, his performance was quite perfunctory and bland on everything that wasn't conversation.
Reading the summary and seeing it recommended by Neil Gaiman, I downloaded _The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break_ expecting either an epic romp through mythological characters in the modern world (?? la Gaiman's _American Gods_) or something rolling on the floor funny. It is neither of those, but it is the best audiobook I've gotten in a while. Sherrill's writing is wonderfully poetic, and Graham's performance is perfect. By the end of the first chapter, I loved the Sherrill's Minotaur. He's like a Fauvist painting of the insecurities we've all known (especially in the first half of the book). Later, when he does foolish things (with good intent), I felt sick to my stomach to see it. I was surprised by how fond I'd grown of the character.
In short, for you Neil Gaiman fans: don't expect _American Gods_. Don't expect _Good Omens_. It's nothing like either of those. But do expect a really excellent book. This one is worth your time.
The story and the reader were so good, that I found myself interested in the most mundane details of life when seen from the Monotaur's perspective.
It's pretty unique--can't compare it.
No one scene--the entire book was good.
Life from the perspective of a Minotaur.
It's weird and really entertaining. No monsters. No supernatural.
I have only listened to the audio, but I like books to be acted out, it puts character to the people.
no, I liked the book.
He did a great job with the characters, the minotaur was perfect, it made me think of a bull I could picture it perfect.
I am not sure
I liked the humanity of the story, and the reactions of the humans to him... I
The junk yard scene where M had an encounter with another ancient predator.
The grunts. Very well acted.
Really a great example of what a controlled, tight writer can do: imagination meets skill; next thing you know, you are wholly engaged and sympathetic to a minotaur line chef. Amazing. The narrator was excellent. Had a great tone. I'm definintely going back to the Neil Gaiman stuff again.
I recommend this book to anyone willing to listen to me....it's that good.
The Minotaur, I found him to be complex. So many years of existence rolled into one contemporary real life situation.
Again, the Minotaur. The performance was excellent. Very nuanced. I felt as though I could find this character working at one of the restaurants in my small town.
Haven't given it any thought.
My husband and I listened to this book on our trip home, from Nashville, TN to Darlington, MD. It was all so oddly fitting...which to me is a good thing.
This is a very well done production. I think this series was a wonderful idea.
So worthy of an audio version.
Enjoyed this story very much! very detailed and almost picturesque. A sensitive description of the relationship of a modern minotaur and his world around him. Loved it. Read it. Absolutely beautifully written.
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