The Labyrinth Here Monsters are hidden A lyrical anti quest through a conscious maze without center borders or escape a dark pilgrim s progress through a landscape of vicious Angels plague houses crocodile prop

  • Title: The Labyrinth
  • Author: Catherynne M. Valente
  • ISBN: 9781894815659
  • Page: 500
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Here Monsters are hidden A lyrical anti quest through a conscious maze without center, borders, or escape a dark pilgrim s progress through a landscape of vicious Angels, plague houses, crocodile prophets, tragic chess sets, and the mind of an unraveling woman, driven on by the mocking guide who seeks to destroy as much as save.Enter the world of the Labyrinth, where DHere Monsters are hidden A lyrical anti quest through a conscious maze without center, borders, or escape a dark pilgrim s progress through a landscape of vicious Angels, plague houses, crocodile prophets, tragic chess sets, and the mind of an unraveling woman, driven on by the mocking guide who seeks to destroy as much as save.Enter the world of the Labyrinth, where Doors do not wait to be opened, but hunt you in the night This is Zarathustra in Wonderland, a puzzle which defies solution, a twisted path through language and madnessBut where will you hide

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      Posted by:Catherynne M. Valente
      Published :2018-04-02T14:55:17+00:00

    One thought on “The Labyrinth”

    1. ' my book is so much cheaper than LSD, and nearly twice as legal' - says the author. Like an early Delany - The Einstein Intersection or The Jewels Of Aptor, or even like Crowley's debut novel, The Deep, this book is an enigma. There's something going on, but like Mr. Jones I don't know what it is. No, actually, I do. It's magic. Magic with words, magic with meanings. A Zen/Buddhist parable about a woman on a quest through a maze, the meaning of the parable is that there aren't always easily red [...]

    2. While the language is rich and poetic, I wouldn’t recommend this particular title to just any fantasy reader. Instead, I’d recommend it to any reader who has a love of poetic language, a love of metaphor. It’s hardly a fantasy so much as it is a myth, a fairy-tale (which is a fantasy in some regards, but not traditional). The chapters are short and grouped together in Cantos (see? Big!Long!Prose!Poem!). This is something I’d recommend to lovers of myth and fairytale, philosophy and metap [...]

    3. This was, I think, Valente's first book. It's probably my least favourite of hers that I've read. It's very classically her work -- her motifs and preoccupations, her way of plotting, her half-poetical writing -- but it just didn't get hooks in me like Deathless or The Grass-Cutting Sword. There's amazing imagery and I actually liked the cyclical nature of the story, butIf you tend, like me, to be most drawn by strong, well-delineated characters, and a plot which moves from A to B with some reso [...]

    4. (From my review of Valente's 'Myths of Origin' :lightningtreelive.wordpress)Reading The Labyrinth was an experience that really opened my eyes to what could be done with fantasy, with myths, and with language in general. I realise that that sounds vague and flippant, it isn’t meant to. Truly, I was in awe. The Labyrinth stunned me with its rich, sensuous, and surprising imagery, its visceral-yet-nebulous narrative which reaches beyond the events on the page and ripples outwards with numerous a [...]

    5. This is not a book for people looking for a quick easy read, or for those that are looking for a sharply defined, concrete plot. It is a book for people who can appreciate complex, beautiful language surrounding a mythological tale. The book tells us about the Seeker in the Labyrinth, who no longer seeks the Center. She has swallowed the Compass Rose which helps her direction. She has been here a long time and has learned to avoid the snapping jaws of doors and other dangers. Along her journey s [...]

    6. I absolutely adored Catherynne M. Valente's In the Night Garden, so picking up The Labyrinth was a no-brained. However, it proved out to be a very different creature.The flowery, metafora heavy writing style is there, but the story itself is more of an exercise of a literacy student. Symbolic, poetic, sometimes utterly bizarre, it went from absolutely charming to not-quite-following-you-here along the way. In both situations, however, the language itself was enough to keep the experience pleasan [...]

    7. This was a very interesting book. Really, it was. It's told in the first person and is about a woman who's trapped in a Labyrinth. She's being chased by doors and we follow along as she searches for the mythical center. But it's the writing and the way the story is structured that makes this book so interesting. The writing is painfully structured, as if every word was CAREFULLY chosen. In some places the story reads more like a poem than modern-day prose. The structure, folds in on itself and d [...]

    8. I really enjoyed Catherynne Valente's book Palimpsest, as well as the short story she contributed to Troll's Eye View. So I was eager to read more of her works. I am so glad I did, I absolutely loved this book, it read more like a gothic epic poem than an actually book but was absolute enrapturing. The content is very dreamy and may not be for all readers; those readers who don't enjoy abstract stories and poetry should probably stick with something else.This book tells the story of a girl stuck [...]

    9. The books of Cat Valente's that I've loved, I've REALLY loved. The Labyrinth does not fall into my "I will adore it forever" pile.The Labyrinth struck me as a collection of run-on sentences and purple prose - quality purple prose, but purple nontheless. This is the writing of a self-indulgent wordsmith, still honing their craft and dazzling both themselves and their readers with the sheer quantity. The words could be beautiful, but lose their meaning and impact without any relief from the overwh [...]

    10. This is a difficult read, heavy in language and word accretion, an interior monologue wrapped like a Quest through a Labyrinth at times fantastical, other times not unlike a journey through a deranged mind. It is Cat Valente's first novel, possibly her most poetic and lyrical, but also raw like an unpolished gem - full of whatever it could be, but not quite there yet. And as hard as it is to talk about the plot of a novel which doesn't have much of one, the (view spoiler)[perfectly circular (hid [...]

    11. Labyrinth is like a lace-work of words. It's definitely surreal, and there are explosions of paragraphs that describe nothing so much as madness. It a story of a quest that isn't, a journey to a center that's not there. It's slightly insane and cyclical, but it's beautifully wrought. The plot is certainly secondary to the tale-telling, and the times that the book drops out of the narrator's head and dips into dialogue serve as resting points for your sensory-overloaded brain. At times, it can be [...]

    12. Despite some well-turned phrases, half of the book was incoherent internal monologue. It had the effect of obscuring the story for pages at a time. This was disappointing after being wowed by Palimpsest.

    13. CMV's first book. Probably not as impressive as her later stuff but still a fun read. You can get it for free from CMV's website.

    14. A highly poetical book where the allusions come think and fast. Valente's signature style is already very evident. Her later novels show a stronger attention to plot, this novel, or novella, is very lyrical and slow moving. This book doesn't need a stronger plot, it is what it is and it's beautiful, but that may be a factor for some people.

    15. Definitely a book to let the words wash over you and not seek out specifics and a plot. Beautiful use of language, extremely vivid. Stay in the present of the book while you're reading it and don't get distracted by the Why. Done like that it's like a brain massage of beautiful and sometimes disturbing images.

    16. I was really excited to find this book because I love "The Girl Who" series. Alas, the first chapter was too much for me. By the second chapter I was skimming heavily. At the start of the third I was done. It's just not what I needed to read right now.I'm taking to the library where hopefully someone will find it who will enjoy it.

    17. Um…*stares at The Labyrinth for a while*Right.I originally picked this up because one of the Q&A’s answers in the back of one of her YA Girl Who books. Valente said something along the lines of how she would want to be the Goblin Queen and meet Jareth. (Jareth is from the 80’s movie Labyrinth and is the Goblin King.) Having seen the movie I was like, “Cool. That movie was somewhat cheesy, but I’ve enjoyed Fanfiction from that world. Oh, she has a book called the The Labyrinth! Mayb [...]

    18. File under "Books That Defy Things Like Categorization and Easy Star Ratings." This may be the most abstruse sf/f books I've ever read: abstract, non-linear, and incredibly dense with metaphor and allusion. In a way, it's so out there that it hardly seems genre to me. There's little to distinguish it from non-genre, similarly Joyce-ean literary fiction. It reads to me as more mythological than fantasy. So for people who enjoy the crunchy challenge of dense prose, I would highly recommend this bo [...]

    19. Such a brilliantly poetic writer. The book starts like this:"Look closely. This is not the Way. Up or down, I could not say, I could not say. I ate the severed halves of a Compass Rose seven-hundred-and-negative-eight miles back, covering the yellow red meat with lime skins and choking it down. Now it is Within. So I could not say northwest or south, only the veil-fire that way and the moon-forest this way, this turn or that turn, round the oleander Wall rippling underwater or over the mandrake [...]

    20. I read this book because I heard Valente speak after a series of SF lectures in Tacoma; she is a very impressive and charming public speaker, so I picked this book up per her mention of it during her talk. I went into this book in a very (favorably) biased mindset. Some of the prose is a bit on the purple side, unfortunately, and I rolled my eyes at a few of the simile-chains that were spaced awkwardly with metaphor and direct description. My biggest gripe with the language was that there are so [...]

    21. A timeless, endless journey through a labyrinth metamorphosizes into a quest to find its center. This is classic early Valente, prose poetry, mythpunk, an intentionally anachronistic mishmash of imagery swathing a powerful metaphor. I found it more successful than Yume no Hon--partially because I prefer its metaphor, but also because the labyrinth as metaphor works so well: it justifies Valente's unspooling, claustrophobic prose; the cyclical plot may be frustrating, but it has a sense of inevit [...]

    22. This was rough going at first. You can tell this is from her transition from poet to novelist. The descriptions are so dense, and the plot well there was no discernable plot and only the one character for so long I put it down and took a break for over a year. Finally I had some time to do some serious reading and picked this back up since I am madly in love with Valente and couldn't bare to leave one of her books unread. Towards the end it reminded me of the "Orphan's Tales" in style and flow o [...]

    23. There is (was/will always be) a girl walking, exploring, hurting, dying, living, choking, ing. She meets monsters who eat monsters who birth monsters who become monsters. Her life is a labyrinth. She has always existed in the labyrinth. She is the air that reads the poem when the book lies open. She is the darkness that cradles the words when the book collects dust on the shelves of a long-forgotten library. She is the white space welcoming the text in the center of her heart, desperately hungry [...]

    24. This was such a strange, bold, powerful book. Experimental and odd. Its prose is rich enough to be a poem. One could argue that it is, in fact, a grand prose poem, with its rhythms and images and density of language. The narrative is pure archetype. If it didn't exist in that shifting, cracking gap of story about story, if it wasn't so meta and dreamlike, its prose would be over-rich for my taste. But it DOES exist there, and I found it just right. It is the tale of the maiden and the labyrinth, [...]

    25. This was not quite what I thought it would be. I had read Palimpsest before, and I think I expected something similar. What I got was a 181 page prose poem. Not unlike a modern Illiad or Aeneid, except not in written in meter. After about 10 pages I gave up trying to hold it all in my brain and just sort of slid through it. Valente has a way with words, and luckily enough for me I like poetry, so the experience was enjoyable.

    26. This book was absolutely fantastic. She has it free on her website, but after I read it- I just had to have a copy because it swept me up in this world I never could have imagined. Maybe it was the way that she wrote it, but I can't say I've read another book that entranced me the way that this one did. I spilled water on my laptop when reading this online because I was so hypnotized. Thank you Catherynne Valente! You're one of my most favorite authors and I'll never forget this.

    27. The Labyrinth is a surreal landscape not unlike Wonderland in that our heroine does a lot of falling and there is life in everything. In the labyrinth, you don't hunt doors, they hunt you.For all its strangeness and apparent lack of a definitive end, I loved it. I particularly adored the gospel-spouting crocodile. However, this isn't something I would recommend to anyone lightly for its unique style.

    28. As usual with her work, I feel like this would benefit a great deal from re-reading and possibly discussing with someone else who has read it very, very recently. It's very lyrical and lovely and I enjoyed it but I didn't feel like I sank into the world the way I have with some of her other works. That said, I definitely look forward to re-reading it.

    29. The Labyrinth delivered on the promise of its title and the promise that is Valente. It was a twisted maze of poetic prose and mythological allusions that was at times barely comprehensible and honestly seemed a bit over my head. I enjoyed it nonetheless, and I've started to feel at home while lost in Valente's stories. Now I'm moving on to another of her short novels

    30. If you're not into the traditional style of narrative, than this book is not for you. More of a philosophical examination of the purposeless journey, the nature of self and change, and embodiment. At least that's what I got out of it. Likely others would get something different, which I think is quite common in Valente's work.Either way, pick this up if you want a piece to ruminate on.

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