Terracotta Angel, c.1896
Watts Chapel, England

 Photo : Jeff Saward/Labyrinthos



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Labyrinthine Literature

The labyrinth has provided a muse for many writers, whether as a central theme for their work, or as a occasional by-way or motif for a specific book. Here are a few that we have on our shelves and have enjoyed:

Labyrinthos Bibliography - General Reading

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The Maze Maker
Michael Ayrton.
Longmans, London, 1967.

Ayrton’s classic retelling of the ‘life’ of Daedalus, builder of the Cretan Labyrinth.

Labyrinths
Jorge Luis Borges.
Penguin Books, London & New York, 1970.

A classic collection of labyrinthine tales and essays from the Argentinian master storyteller.

The Name of the Rose
Umberto Eco.
Secker & Warburg, London, 1983.

Eco's wonderful medieval murder mystery, set within the confines of a castle with its mysterious labyrinthine library. Essential reading for labyrinth enthusiasts and bibliophiles alike.

The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break
Steven Sherril.
Picador, New York, 2002.

Imagine the Minotaur reborn and living in a trailer park, working in a diner in the deep south of the USA. Original and moving, this novel is a dark reflection of modern life and relationships.

Larry's Party
Carol Shields.
1997, Fourth Estate, London, 1997.
Winner of the 1998 Orange Prize, this is "an ironic odyssey through the life of a modern man," from the perspective of Larry Weller. A journey that takes him from florist to international maze designer, via two failed marriages, with reflections on what it means to be a man living at the end of the 20th century. Apart from being a cracking novel, it uses hedge mazes, with their "controlled chaos and contrived panic", as a recurrent theme.