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 thought the narration was great and would listen to more books by Graham. The story was very different, with great detail about a small slice in the life of the Minotaur in modern times. I would only say I expected a different ending and frankly have not decided how I feel about it - not necessarily a bad thing - I just had a very different ending imagined.
Sorry, I just couldn't finish it. Got over 1/2 way but nothing was holding my interest. Good study for a short story but for a novel? The protagonist has to do something other than be a perpetual sad sack. I hope Sherrill finds a good audience, it's not me.
My pic says it all. That's my dog and he is really barking for me to throw another snowball. Scary looks but really just a playful guy by nature. Been reading sf/fantasy like a power nerd my whole life which is almost 50 years now. I like all sorts of stuff just make the story believable...
I can see why Neil Gaiman likes this guy. He can create a sceen and make it come to life with a creative resonance that is facinating to listen to. Just awesome. However, the reason I only gave it three starts is that nothing really happens in the story and this incredible writing can only get it so far.
In fact, I stopped listening to it about 4/5 through the book, but I plan to get back too it later. One reason was that their is this sex sceen that was just a little too wierd and graphic. But man, can this guy write...amazing.
Yes. I believe this was his first book and found the story had some tedium. More experience might yield a more compelling story.
The Minotaur conveys significant emotion in each grunt and I'm not sure the written word would have carried that quite as well.
Sure, but I don't think this is a likely candidate for the hollywood treatment. It would need a more driving story.
I found my mind wandering aimlessly during this book due to the somewhat mundane and tedious story. I had high hopes for this book going in but would call it decidedly average overall.
the story has been stuck in my head for many years, since I heard a review of it on NPR I think... I read it and for some reason, loved it.
Not sure if there is any comparison, because the main character is basically immortal, elementally symbolic, part animal, part man, which is what makes him so fascinating. There aren't many stories like that.
His voice is at times a little melodramatic, but he's a thing of Greek myth, so it's fitting. Other times, his voice is down home country American. Again, it's fitting.
At one point, we are told that the Minotaur doesn't like to talk, because he's embarassed of his voice, so he does alot of expressive grunting and one syllable responses. Talking isn't his thing, but he's very good at understanding others, expert at fixing things and mechanic work. He's afraid of dogs and avoids confrontation, but his character has the power to take out anybody he wants. Love it.
Great book I read over and over again.
A voracious reader with little time to read actual print books, I adore Audible and have been listening to audiobooks regularly for years.
I think that the best part of the book was the narration. I don't think I would have liked the book in print and would have just put it down, never to finish. The narration kept me interested.
I don't think I had a favorite character. The Minotaur is the obvious choice for a favorite, but I found his indecisiveness off-putting.
Holter Graham brought the Minotaur to life. I think that I might have gotten bored reading the actual print, as there were slow patches. Mr. Graham eased me through them with alacrity.
No. While I did enjoy the book, it wasn't something that stirred excitement or curiosity. It was a diverting listen, but one that went best when I was doing something else, like cooking, and just wanted something to listen to.
A former globetrotting surf punk turned homeowner with ecclectic tastes. Classics, horror, crime, biographies or lectures? Yes please!
This is the first book I have listened to from Neil Gaiman Productions and it will definitely not be the last. This was a solid story performed excellently by the reader, and although it was quite entertaining the author did a good job using that as a forum to make you reflect on the transitory nature of my life. I found myself thinking of the finality of moving from one phase of life to another, without the story being in the least preachy or to heavy handed about it. This was an excellent selection!
Say something about yourself!
I enjoyed reading this book. The minotaur? An unusual and appealing character. Yes, I've known people who did not use a lot of words. And people who have a past they would just-as-soon forget, and who are very neat and tidy with their things as a kind of protective ritual. The loneliness of living 5000 years, of outliving one's friends so many times was touching. The voice of the Minotaur--mostly expressive grunts was right on. The ending was a little weak for my taste, but I had a good time getting there--sometimes, that's enough.
A really interesting new twist on an old theme.
I loved the integration of old gods and deities into modern society. It was really interesting seeing this modern world with a twist of 'accepting' gods and demigods as the norm.
The performance of Holter Graham was amazing. He really gave the Minotaur life. The way he moo'd and sighed and just existed around those who would take him for granted as the main Character was great.
I think the moment that moved me the most was when the Minotaur was watching the bull fight and seeing in that the cruelty of humanity. How terrible the race of man is and yet how he longed to be one of them desired nothing more then to fit in with these heartless savages. That they wanted nothing more then to beat down and kill something stronger then themselves in a cheating manner just so they could appear to their fellows a bit more brave.
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