Wednesday, June 13, 2007

An Introduction to Kurt Vonnegut

So I just finished reading my first book by Kurt Vonnegut, "Cat's Cradle" after hearing such raving reviews about the author who recently died.

My first reaction: WTF!!! (perplexed)

But, after reading further, the apocalypic scenes, absurdities and subtle social commentary grew on me. I even converted to the fictional religion of the islanders in the novel: Bokononism!

Here's an example of Bokononist philosophy taken from the book:

"Lion got to hunt,
Bird got to fly,
Man got to ask himself why? Why? Why?
Lion got to sleep,
Bird got to land,
Man got to tell himself he understand"


At first I wasn't used to the non-linear way in which the story unfolded and I was put off by the fact that every character seemed too eccentric to be true. It made me angry while at the same time the way the short chapters always ended in some sort of odd punchline made me laugh. However, as if to atone and give me what I deserve from beyond the grave, here I find a quote of Vonnegut's which addresses my very anger:

"Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full armor and attacked a hot fudge sundae."

Thanks Kurt.

Although I haven't read "Man Without a Country" I have been thinking about global warming a lot lately, so I'll have to pick it up at some point or another, perhaps after reading "Slaughterhouse VII".

In the meantime, please let me know what you think about this author and his works.



Blogger Sinister Sally said...

I've personally never read it, although I've heard much about it and now your analysis.....sounds interesting enough.

reading is always a good thing....I need to do much more of it.

10:02 a.m.  

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