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Monster in a Box
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Monster in a Box

4.02 of 5 stars 4.02  ·  rating details  ·  399 ratings  ·  17 reviews
For some time now, writer-actor-performance artist Spalding Gray has been carrying around with him a monster: a manuscript of a novel called Impossible Vacation, a book that at last sighting weighed in at about 1,800 pages. Monster in a Box, Gray's latest monologue, is a guided tour between the stations of his writing block, which include a field trip to Nicaragua, a disas ...more
Paperback, 96 pages
Published February 25th 1992 by Vintage (first published 1992)
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People who make you laugh shouldn't be allowed to kill themselves. It isn't right. It spoils everything. Spalding Gray I utterly resent you doing this and I will never read anything you wrote again. Sorry, but.

So, when I received a surprise package from the UK recently - there are some lovely things about the goodreads community, aren't there? - and one of them was this film, I looked at it with trepidation for a week before making myself watch. I'm really pleased I did: observing Spalding's mon
Virginia Arthur
I just published "my monster" so of course...Any author struggling to finish the dmn thing needs to read this book but I cannot say it's comforting.

The book is funny as hll, esp if you have a literary monster lurking somewhere in your head, your heart, or sitting on your desk, staring at you, incriminating you every time you walk away from it-- without touching it. It's unrequited love. It's your lover and it wants/needs you to finish it. Please don't shut the----BAM!
Carolyn Powers
This British author, Ruth Rendell has written a series of Inspec tor Wexford Novels and this is detailed, easy to get into and fun to read as the details give lots of clues.
I never thought I would ever say this, but read the book instead of seeing the film. It's tragic, because as riveting as he is, it is practically ruined by the inappropriate, overly loud music throughout. Just when I'd be getting in his story, there would be loud, pretty awful music, totally distracting, playing over him.

I know this is a "thing." Many blogs are similarly annoying for this reason. Spalding doesn't need music playing over him to remind us his monologue is dramatic, funny, painful
I saw the DVD of this monologue years ago and couldn't have loved it more. Considered getting this in ebook form but really, half of the fun is Spalding's delivery so the audiobook was a must purchase.
Unfortunately the sound quality is not ideal. It's a little echoey but once I got rolling I noticed it less.
This is a monologue that rambles through quite a few events in his life but moves seamlessly between them and manages to hold my attention completely from beginning to end.
Love it.
Printable Tire
I suppose this is better as an actual monologue... quick read though, entertaining enough. Couldn't help thinking about how Old Spalding offed himself and also how he grew up in "Borrington" RI while I was reading. Still a guy I'm interested in. Thought he was cool in True Stories. Seemed to have it made, going to residencies and getting paid for interviewing people about UFOS. Hard to relate to from that angle. Wonder if his novel is any good. Killed himself after seeing Big Fish- is that a goo ...more
Sabra Embury
This quick read is an autobiographical monologue that made me laugh out loud at least half a dozen times. It recounts Gray's insights through ubiquitous projects after his play "Swimming to Cambodia" was adapted into a film by Jonathan Demme (1997), consequently making him an extra-hot ticket in the entertainment industry.

New York theater-based Gray gets a grant while attempting to finish a "monster" of a novel (what would be his first and only Impossible Vacation) at a writer's retreat in New
Riana Elizabeth
The first time I read this book, I didn't know Spaulding Gray had died under mysterious circumstances. However, after the first read, I wouldn't be surprised if it was suicide. His dark, almost manic depression seeps between the lines, simultaneously pleading for help while also poking fun at himself.

Storytelling: 4 Stars
Writing: The "manic" style is a bit disjointed for me so 3 Stars
Chance I'll Reread: 2 Stars
About the trials of writing Impossible Vacation, which I forgot is a novel because it isn't. And it doesn't need to be, because he's found his niche as a an autobiographical storyteller.
The companion piece, of sorts, to Gray's novel Impossible Vacation (which I think is a complete waste of time), this is my favorite transcription of one of his monologues.
I love Spalding Gray's monologues. This book is good, but not as good as the movie where you see him actually perform the monologue. Might be better off Netflixing the movie.
Matt had Spalding Gray sign this book in 1999 when we stumbled across a book signing in LA. Now I feel motivated to read more of his monologues.
I think maybe I give his monologue five stars and the book less. I love this guy, wish he were still with us. He was a Rhode Islander.
Jason Paulios
Sep 30, 2011 Jason Paulios marked it as abandoned
Shelves: nonfiction, memoir, humor
I checked out the DVD instead, it needed his delivery.
Dec 26, 2008 Valerie rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Valerie by: Steve
Read this and rent the movies.
Ethli (w-p)
śmiać się na cały wagon czytając. :)
Chambers Stevens
Love me some Spalding Gray!
Athena marked it as to-read
Apr 17, 2015
Maria Bianchi
Maria Bianchi marked it as to-read
Apr 17, 2015
Anna marked it as to-read
Mar 22, 2015
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Spalding Gray was an American actor, screenwriter, performance artist, and playwright.
More about Spalding Gray...
Swimming to Cambodia Impossible Vacation Sex and Death to the Age 14 Gray's Anatomy It's a Slippery Slope

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“And in this role (the Stage Manager) I could speak from my heart, you know!....provided I can memorize the lines.” 2 likes
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