Launched in November, Dell's Kurt Vonnegut reissue program continues with one of the world's great anti-war books. Centering on the infamous firebombing of Dresden, Billy Pilgrim's odyssey through time reflects the mythic journey of our own fractured lives as we search for meaning in what we are afraid to know.Launched in November, Dell's Kurt Vonnegut reissue program continues with one of the world's great anti-war books. Centering on the infamous firebombing of Dresden, Billy Pilgrim's odyssey through time reflects the mythic journey of our own fractured lives as we search for meaning in what we are afraid to know.Read Less
This was my introduction to Vonnegut, and I plan to read more. He certainly has an ironic, offhanded way of describing the bombing of Dresden. Early on he says that writing a book about ending war would be like writing a book about stopping glaciers. The point is that there will always be war, although in present day glaciers may be disappearing. So, he writes about war without glorifying it or condemning it; he responds to each death with the straightforward: "So it goes."
This book is usually classified as science fiction because of the appearance of an alien race, but I think this is an error. Vonnegut leaves clues in the book that the Aliens are all in Billy Pilgrim's head. Pilgrim doesn't experience his life in a linear order due to the alien abduction, but there are hints that he may be experiencing flashbacks or flashforwards. Vonnegut even reveals that the aliens were characters in Trout's sci-fi books, which Pilgrim read while at war. I don't think the book specifically presents the existence of these aliens or of Pilgrim's physical time leaps as facts.
I would classify the book as metafiction.
Mr. Trout was quite a character!
Jun 3, 2010
This is really a philosophic treatise on the nature of time, among its other topics. The author is as entertaining as ever, but offers more food for thought, Well worth the investments of time, money and intellect.
Sep 10, 2009
Everyone should read this book at least once, as it is rightly viewed as a masterpiece of American literature.
Kurt Vonnegut feeds his experience as a prisoner of war in Dresden through a tangled prism of time travel and outer space and out comes the truly arresting question of how we find ourselves after we're lost. Vonnegut's exploration of this question is dynamic, sad, and at times quite funny, though it is up for debate as to whether this question can ever be answered. It's a great work of fiction.
Sep 5, 2008
So it goes...
Vonnegut's masterpiece. One of the top ten must reads of the late 20th century.
Aug 6, 2007
Slaughterhouse-Five, Or The Children's Crusade : A Duty-dance with Death is a fantastic adventure through time, war and space. The book is a great first-step into Mr. Vonnegut and certainly a book for long time fans. It follows the story of Billy Pilgrim through his wartime escapades, his life after the war and his time traveling adventures. The book covers the most important aspects of his life all the way to his death. So it goes. An eye-opening look at the bombing of Dresden crossed with a thought-provoking, dark-humored science fiction novel truly makes for an enjoying read guaranteed to keep you enthralled to the very end. It begins like this: "Listen: Billy Pilgrim has come unstuck in time." It ends like this: "Poo-tee-weet?"
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