Skip to main content

The Book Nook: "Day of the Minotaur" (Thomas Burnett Swann)

I have a love of mythology from around the word- and stories that deal with the mythological beings in them.  This week, let me take you back to the time of Ancient Greece... a time of the Minotaur...

Thea watched their torch-bearing captors recede into the distance and leave them to the cave's darkness.  Her brother Icarus whispered, "Forgive me- I wanted to come to the Country of the Beasts, not to the Cave of the Minotaur."

Then they heard a padding of feet (or hooves?), and the curdling bellow of an enraged monster.  It was the-bull-that-walks-like-a-man, a hybrid of man and beast, monstrous to the eyes, and roaring with cold malevolance.

Thea began to feel her way along the walls; their dampness oozed like blood between her fingers.  She rounded a turn and looked up into the eyes of the Minotaur, and his red, matted hair...

We all know about the Minotaur, right?  The man-beast that lived in a maze and craved the flesh of men?  Well, "Day of the Minotaur" explores that myth in a different way.  Thomas Burnett Swann tells a fantasy asking- what if the Minotaur hadn't been the unthinking, rampaging beast of the classic myths?  What if he was a thinking, feeling creature instead?

This premise is the skeleton upon with the meaty flesh of the story rests.  And it supports that weight quite well.  As a lover of mythology, I was fascinated by this take on one of them.  It creates a great feel for the age and settings.  The language used is fairly formal- but effective in it's mission.  It's only about 142 pages, so is a relatively quick read.  While reading it though, I didn't notice any time moving- and read it from start to finish in one sitting.  A very compelling and engaging story over all.

If you can get over the very formal style of speech from the characters, you'll find yourself getting emotionally engaged with the feelings and actions of Thea, Icarus, and Eunostos- the Minotaur.  They are all very interesting, relatable, and unique individuals that contribute drama, and romance to the story.

For a story that was first published in 1966, I'd say that I found it to be utterly fascinating to read, and if you're a fan of fantasy novels- or a fan of mythology, you might find it equally enjoyable.  A Good.


Popular posts from this blog

#CocktailHour: Slushtail

  Summer approaches, inspiring thoughts of sunshine, backyard parties, and having a tip and sip with friends.  With that in mind, I bring you this week sunny beverage. To make a slushtail, mix a can of frozen orange juice, a can of frozen lemonade (or limeade), a can of pineapple juice, a couple cups of black tea (or English Breakfast), and two cups of bourbon- such as Southern Comfort, in a pitcher.  When it's all nicely mixed, put it in the freezer until it's a nice slushy consistency. Scoop the slush into a cocktail glass, and pour in some Sprite or 7-Up.  Add a little umbrella for some frivolous fun, and a straw. Voila!  Ready to enjoy. This is a very refreshing drink.  The fruit juices, Sprite, and bourbon- when chilled makes for a great punch-like drink.  The bourbon doesn't overwhelm juices.   In fact, they are all nicely balanced in terms of flavors.  The sourness of the citrus fruits contrasts well with the slightly sweeter Southern Comfort.  It was refreshing enou

Marcus Flor vs Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

In film, there's nothing I enjoy more than passionate creativity. Compared to the sea of mediocrity surrounding it, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is practically overflowing with it. This animated movie is vibrant, kinetic, and extremely inventive with its art style. On top of all that, this is just a solid movie. It tells its story with sincerity and tact, always focusing on the important aspects of Miles' emotional journey. The script wastes no time on pointless scenes or moments, which also gives the film an energetic rhythm that draws you in. One of the other great aspects of this movie is its reinvention of the Spider-Man story. It's clever writing demonstrates a true understanding of the webslinger, and offers commentary on the current state of his movie adaptations. In the end, you get a film both Spidey fans and non-fans can enjoy. Above all other aspects, what I like most about Spider-Verse is how fun it is. It demonstrates quality animation and filmmaking doesn

Run, Bandit, Run: "Bandit: Bandit's Silver Angel" (1994)

  Tuesday rolls around with clear skies, clear lakes, and clear highways.  Along the long stretches Smokey can be found chasing the Bandit... and adventure follows close behind. After his uncle passes away, Bandit finds himself helping a beautiful widow keep their carnival afloat. But all is not as it seems with this carnival.  It hides a secret... a shiny, glittery secret that others would kill to keep for themselves... " Bandit: Bandit's Silver Angel " sees the 1990's TV movie series based on the original "Smokey and the Bandit" films come to a close.  And to be honest, it wasn't a bad send-off for the series. Brian Bloom once again brings a pleasant charm and playfulness to the character of Bandit.  While Donald O'Connor didn't get a lot of screen time, he brought quite a bit of humour to his character as Uncle Cyrus, and gave a solid impression that he's one of the few characters that could easily outwit Bandit.  Traci Lords in the role o