THE DARK LABYRINTH by Lawrence Durrell


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Originally published in England about ten years after The Black Book and ten years before Justine, this novel, set on Crete, hasn't much relation to either book in style or shape. It tells of eight English tourists who take a side trip to visit a cave reputed to be the legendary labyrinth of the minotaur, and who are caught in a rock fall deep inside. In direct, realistic style it gives the pertinent background and present details of each character, leading up to the disastrous climax --and then describes how each reacts to the extreme crisis. The pre-disaster sections are full of caustic humor and ironic commentary on the state of the world right after World War II, while the part that shows the oddly assorted group wandering through the labyrinth after the fall combines horror, suspense, mysticism and a rather too obvious symbolism. It is an interesting although somewhat manipulated book in its own right and will, of course, receive special critical attention because of the highly successful and widely publicized Alexandria Quartel.

Pub Date: Feb. 16th, 1962
Publisher: Dutton