1. yuriicide
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    yuriicide Member

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    Kurt Vonnegut fans?

    Discussion in 'Book Discussion' started by yuriicide, Mar 5, 2011.

    I'm pretty sure most if not all of you know or have read works by, according to my standards, a master story teller/writer. Slaughterhouse Five and Breakfast of Champions are two of my favorite books. Anyone else share my enthusiasm about this fellow?
     
  2. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    Depends on your standards I suppose.

    I was almost given a copy of Slaughterhouse Five for free, but I gave it back without really looking at it. You really had to be there to understand why, I didn't give it back because I wasn't interested in the book; far from it.

    Ever since then I look at it every time I'm in Waterstones.
     
  3. Dandroid
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    Dandroid Senior Member

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    yeah...sirens of titan was an amazing work...tied with cat's cradle for his best....
     
  4. jo spumoni
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    jo spumoni Active Member

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    Slaughterhouse-Five is one of my three favorite books ever (my other two are To Kill a Mockingbird and Saving Fish from Drowning), but I think one of his most underrated works is Mother Night. I thought Mother Night was an absolutely brilliant book; it deserves a place at the top with Slaughterhouse-Five and Cat's Cradle.

    At the risk of being heavily panned, however, I have to say that I really didn't like Breakfast of Champions. I thought the writing was lousy, the story was boring, the pictures were odd and at times gross, and the plot was lacking in a purpose. I always seem to be the only one who feels this way, though.

    However, basically, Vonnegut was a great writer. He always impressed me with the way he manages to say much in so few words. For instance, once I spent about a month or so reading Dostoevsky's book The Idiot. It was around 600 pages and very, very dense and very, very depressing. I'm glad I read it, but it was a hard read. So after that, I decided to reward myself with one of Vonnegut's books that my friend told me was his favorite: God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater. This book was less than 300 pages long, had some funny moments, and took me around 2 days to finish. And upon finishing it, I realized that the two books I had read, The Idiot and God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater, had the exact same themes! They were both about how our society views people who are just plain kind as imbeciles. Furthermore, the ENDING WAS THE SAME!!!! Vonnegut managed to say in less than 300 words what Dostoevsky had said in 600. That's not entirely fair, of course; Dostoevsky's work is much more detailed and is very meticulously written. But nonetheless, that Vonnegut was capable of making such a profound argument in so short a space is nothing short of amazing.
     
  5. Dandroid
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    Dandroid Senior Member

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    agreed...breakfast of champion was weak...vonnegut awarded himself a c + for that effort....
     
  6. yuriicide
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    yuriicide Member

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    Breakfast of Champions might not have been his best but I still found it interesting in a rather peculiar way.
     
  7. jo spumoni
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    jo spumoni Active Member

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    Yeah, I know a lot of people who disagree with me about Breakfast of Champions. To each his own, of course. I personally just didn't feel any connection to any of the characters, and I felt like Vonnegut foreshadowed the ending to the point of absurdity--it made me even less keen to want to know what happened in the end, and I think if the book had been any longer I wouldn't have finished it. But it was so short and I liked Slaughterhouse-Five so much that I just kept pushing on. Then, I got to the end, and went, "Oh. That's it?" I felt a bit duped, kind of like when I go to an art museum and find that "Red Dot in the Middle of the Page, #2" is the main feature in the Modern Art Gallery. Maybe it makes me shallow, but to me, that painting really is just a dot and Breakfast of Champions really is wasted narrative. But once again, to each his own.
     

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