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God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian

3.84  ·  Rating Details  ·  11,839 Ratings  ·  558 Reviews
From Slapstick's "Turkey Farm" to Slaughterhouse-Five's eternity in a Tralfamadorean zoo cage with Montana Wildhack, the question of the afterlife never left Kurt Vonnegut's mind. In God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian, Vonnegut skips back and forth between life and the Afterlife as if the difference between them were rather slight. In thirty odd "interviews," Vonnegut trips down ...more
Paperback, 80 pages
Published May 22nd 2001 by Washington Square Press (first published 1999)
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Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt VonnegutCat's Cradle by Kurt VonnegutBreakfast of Champions by Kurt VonnegutThe Sirens of Titan by Kurt VonnegutMother Night by Kurt Vonnegut
Vonnegut's Best
17th out of 38 books — 532 voters
Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt VonnegutCat's Cradle by Kurt VonnegutBreakfast of Champions by Kurt VonnegutMother Night by Kurt VonnegutThe Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut
Top Ten Vonnegut Books
15th out of 15 books — 49 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Apr 30, 2007 Kecia rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: humanists
Shelves: general_fiction
He's up in Heaven now.
Paquita Maria Sanchez
Feb 02, 2015 Paquita Maria Sanchez rated it liked it
Shelves: literature
This tongue-in-cheek journal of "interviews," smirkingly presented by our narrator and fictional radio journalist, Mr. Kurt Vonnegut himself, as Non-Fiction, is a succinct promotion of Humanist (sorry, Kurt, I mean "little h-humanist") values, a playfully mocking critique of blind-faith spirituality, and a short sprint down various tiny, random branches of both famous and near-forgotten history. It is also an homage to Jack Kevorkian and his all-too-humanistic life and work, as well as a critiqu ...more
Jonathan Ashleigh
Dec 07, 2015 Jonathan Ashleigh rated it it was ok
This is one Vonnegut book that I could not connect with. There wasn't really anything that linked up and each conversation seemed to not matter to the others. There were parts that amused me but on the whole, it wasn't worth my time, even though it did not take much time to digest.
Stephen M
I'm on the fence about a lot of Vonnegut's work. Because on the one hand, I read Slaughterhouse 5 as a literature illiterate in Junior year of High School (it wasn't until after High School that I became a real fan of reading). So there's a lot to love about Vonnegut on a purely nostalgic basis, or at least on the basis that he is who introduced me to literature in the first place. It was he that warmed me up to the great works that were to come, and of all the books that I claim to love now. I ...more
Dec 10, 2015 Josh rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
(2.5) Would we take that 3/4's dead and go through the blue tunnel with a round trip back to life journey if we could? To obtain information from the mind of some of the best known intellectuals to ever live, with the absence of the concept of time? Vonnegut posits this for a brief analysis through the mind of a reporter that is being assisted by the ever-so-loved Dr. Jack Kevorkian.

Witticisms a plenty and sarcasm, as usual, Vonnegut plays the intermediary interlocutor between the long dead (som
Oct 23, 2007 Jim rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Those who like thoughtful humour
I think, for once, the brevity of this book does the subject matter a disservice. The short pieces were originally presented as 90-second interludes on WNYC, Manhattan's public radio station through the material has been reworked prior to publication. It is easy, tempting even, to race through this book, and enjoy the fun part of it (guilty as charged), and it is funny throughout, and not get the message; he can be quite subtle.

Vonnegut presents these short pieces as if they were factual accoun
TJ Shelby
Jan 25, 2011 TJ Shelby rated it really liked it
Hilarious book. What started as complete irreverence for the hereafter actually became an appreciation of life in the now. Originally a collection of radio shorts for WNYC, the book chronicles the author's trip down the long blue tunnel to visit the Pearly Gates and interview a cast of souls both famous and ordinary. Dr. Kevorkian assists each time to send him 3/4 dead and then to bring him back...well, until Kevorkian gets nabbed for 1st degree murder charges and dragged back to his home state ...more
MJ Nicholls
Jan 21, 2012 MJ Nicholls rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, merkins
For an extremely short period of time in the late nineties, Kurt was “Reporter on the Afterlife” for the WNYC radio station in, presumably, NYC—hence the station’s name. (Columbo in the house!) This extremely short book compiles his ninety-second radio spots, where he met such figures as Dr. Mary D. Ainsworth, Adolf Hitler, Sir Isaac Newton and Isaac Asimov. Following Timequake, these little pieces were, more or less, what Kurt did towards the end of his life—little paragraphs of philosophical a ...more
Nov 29, 2009 Santi rated it it was amazing
[“This is one of my favorite part of this book: :)]

During my controlled near-death experiences, I’ve met Sir Isaac Newton, who died back in 1727, as often as I’ve met Saint Peter. They both hang out at the Heaven end of the blue tunnel of the Afterlife. Saint Peter is there because that’s his job. Sir Isaac is there of his insatiable curiosity about what the blue tunnel is, Low the blue tunnel works.

It isn’t enough for Newton that during his eighty-five years on Earth he invented calculus, cod
Jul 15, 2009 Caris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
I wish I would have heard the radio spots. These short pieces were clever and oh-so-Vonnegut, but they were far too brief. I really wish they would have been expanded for the book.

I find myself wondering about Vonnegut's use of Dr. Kevorkian as a vehicle into the afterlife. Having read a decent amount of his stuff, I know that no details are chosen without reason. I think I'd like to have a near death experience and ask him about it.
Ahmad Sharabiani
God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian, Kurt Vonnegut
عنوان: خدا حفظتان کند دکتر کهوارکیان؛ نویسنده: کورت ونه گات؛ مترجم: مصطفی رضیئی؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، افراز، 1389، در 96 ص، شابک: 9789642432301؛ موضوع: مصاحبه های خیالی
Joy H.
Added 2/8/14.
_God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian_ (79-page book) by Kurt Vonnegut (first published in 1999)

3/5/16 - I have finally gotten around to reading this very short book in which Kurt Vonnegut imagines himself as a reporter interviewing famous dead people. I must say that the satire and irony is delicious! You have to read the book to get the real sense of it. No amount of explanation can deliver the real effect of it.

Each interview is a very short vignette, making the reading of the book very
Feb 20, 2011 wally rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: vonnegut
vonnegut must have written this later in life...

...what is a humanist? a humanist is a schmitt-heel who makes fun of the beliefs of others, at their expense, and offers nothing in exchange...

as cervantes wrote...friend to friend no more draws near and the jester's cane has become a spear.

read this one on my amazon kindle, second book i've read on it, both to wondering...are all the pages here? how would i know? can't fan through them and sniff the cover...or is that against the law b
Aug 06, 2015 Fahime rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
این بار ونه گات به کمک دکتر که وارکیان، نیمه جان می شود، احتمالا با تزریق چیزی مرگبار، به آن دنیا می رود، دم در بهشت با آدم های مختلف مصاحبه می کند و برمی گردد. جهنمی وجود ندارد! همه به بهشت می روند و سنت پیتر ترتیب ملاقات ها را درست دم در بهشت می دهد!
خود کتاب 65 صفحه بیشتر نیست، اما نشر افراز زندگی نامه ی کوتاه ونه گات را هم پیوست کرده است.
بین این آدم ها، هیتلر هست که از ونه گات می خواهد روی بنای یادبودش! بنویسند ببخشید. آسیموف هست که در بهشت هم همچنان می نویسد. نیوتون هست که سعی دارد بفهمد این
May 05, 2011 Michael rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: all adults
The first thing I must admit is that this is not what I expected. I was expecting either an endorsement of or a condemnation of the controversial doctor. I personally think the good doctor did a valuable service for those who asked him for that service. If my earth journey happens to end in sickness and pain, I hope there is someone as compassionate as Dr. Kevorkian to help me cross the bridge. I doubt that such a person will be allowed by the medical, legal, and religious people who insist that ...more
Jun 16, 2012 Jessica rated it really liked it
“This morning, thanks to a controlled near-death experience, I was lucky enough to meet, at the far end of the blue tunnel, a man named Salvatore Biagini. Last July 8th, Mr. Biagini, a retired construction worker, age seventy, suffered a fatal heart attack while rescuing his beloved schnauzer, Teddy, from an assault by an unrestrained pit bull named Chele, in Queens.

The pit bull, with no previous record of violence against man or beast, jumped a four-foot fence in order to have at Teddy. Mr. Bia
Nov 20, 2013 Baelor rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013, satire
A very short collection of very short interviews with the dead. Fictionalized, of course, although Vonnegut characteristically blurs the line between fiction and reality, interviewing, in his own name, both Adolf Hitler and Kilgore Trout, i.a.

The book is transparently a fictional treatise on Humanism, of which Vonnegut was an ardent adherent. Being Vonnegut, he also includes biting satire. Take, for example, Hitler's megalomania, which persists even in the afterlife. Anyway, each of the chapter
Afro Madonna
Aug 06, 2015 Afro Madonna rated it it was ok
Uuuuuughhhhhh. I am probably one (or maybe there's none) of the few people who didn't really like or get this book! Like it took me decades to finish it, and I actually read to the end because I hate leaving books unfinished. Plus since it's a really short book, I really really wanted to get it out of the way. I have normally loved the few Kurt Vonnegut books I have read thus far but this one just didn't do it for me. :'(
Aug 07, 2015 sologdin rated it it was ok
Collection of vignettes, wherein V acts as reporter from beyond the grave, interviewing various dead persons. Point of the collection for real is a fundraiser for public radio, and each piece seems as though it could’ve been an on-air sketch.

Standard V stuff: witty, lefty, sometimes silly. Faux interviews with John Brown, Clarence Darrow, Eugene Debs, Shakespeare, Hitler, Isaac Newton, James Earl Ray, Mary Shelley, Asimov. Kilgore Trout also gets interviewed.

Notes interesting factoids, such as t
Mercedé Khodadadi مرسده خدادادی
"Hell is other people".
Jun 08, 2016 Dahlia rated it really liked it
Humans, by nature, are scared of the unknown. So, death, being the most unknown thing in existence - or out of existence, rather - should be our biggest fear. After all, death is like a bleak night - it’s something we can never escape, no matter how much we try to fend it off. Life after death is a topic that starts wars, which coincidentally causes even more death, which causes more war. Even the wisest people on Earth are not entirely knowledgeable about death.

But what if death was not seen a
Niloo Beygi
Feb 14, 2015 Niloo Beygi rated it liked it
Shelves: رمان
این نگاه طنازانه و شیرین رو ونه گات دقیقا از کجا آورده بوده؟ یکی از معدود کسایی که باعث می شه وقتی دارم کتابش رو می خونم بلند بلند بخندم. بزرگ ترین مسائل اجتماعی-سیاسی رو هم می تونه خیلی ظریف به سخره بگیره و در عین حال انتقاد خودش رو هم مطرح کنه.
مصاحبه با شکسپیر، آیزاک آسیموف، جیمز ارل گری،نیوتون، هیتلر دوست داشتنی ترین بودن.
Jan 11, 2008 Kelly rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Vonnegut lovers who have not yet explored his lesser-known work
Vonnegut's eccentric whimsy shines through in this book, which is split into short segments documenting an interview in Heaven with a dead person. The brevity was perfect, capturing a thought just simple enough to be potentially profound.
Irene Carracher Kistler
Jan 17, 2016 Irene Carracher Kistler rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult
This is a fast read! If you're embarking on a #Bookaday challenge, zoom this one right up to the top of that TBR list. In this book, Vonnegut partners with Dr. Kevorkian to carry out planned, near-death experiences. As he travels to the Pearly Gates and back, again and again, he interviews the likes of Adoph Hitler, Mary Shelley and William Shakespeare. Not every interviewee is famous, though, as Vonnegut gives a nod to the everyman and compels us to realize that everyone has a story. One of the ...more
Jul 30, 2015 Ali rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
مجموعه گزارش های وونه گوت در رادیوی WNYC به عنوان گزارشگره . مثل همه ی کارای دیگه ش با همون زبان ساده ، ولی خوندنش هم مث سایر کاراش لطف خودشو داره :-)
Kristyn Conner
Jun 16, 2011 Kristyn Conner rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2011
As someone who personally isn't very religious or spiritual, I was unsure whether or not Vonnegut's tiny little paperback would resonate well with me... but I must admit that I loved every single page.

God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian is essentially a collection of snippets that Vonnegut originally presented as ninety-second interludes on a New York public radio station. As a self-deemed "reporter of the Afterlife," Vonnegut permits the famed euthanasia activist Dr. Kevorkian (fondly referred to as J
Stuff I Read - God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian by Kurt Vonnegut Review

So this is a weird little book. I'm really not sure exactly how to describe it, because it straddles a few lines, bends a few conventions, and it's hard to tell at times just how genuine or sincere the book is trying to be. Which might in part be due to the nature of the project. In a series of very short pieces intended for radio, Vonnegut imagines himself as a journalist to the afterlife, a man who can go and visit the other si
Apr 16, 2010 Mike rated it it was amazing
This is a super-quick read, filled with tons of little gems. The premise: It's a series of reports from Heaven, near-death experiences administered under the care of Jack Kevorkian in a lethal injection facility in Huntsville, Texas.

It's the sort of subject matter that could easily come off as trite or condescending or ironic or overly self-aware, but the quick reports are anything but. Vonnegut opens with a short discussion of his humanist beliefs, and the depth of these beliefs is apparent thr
Jul 25, 2007 Paul rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Vonnegut Fans
Shelves: vonnegut
I cannot figure out if Vonnegut released this 'God Bless You Dr. Kevorkian' merely as a filler between novels, or if there was simply enough clamor from Vonnegut's and/or NPR listeners to have this collected and published. One way or another, I was left unsatisfied at this book's end, not because I disliked the short stories, rather because there were not enough short stories. I understand that each 'interview' was originally a short inserted into programs on National Public Radio. Subsequently, ...more
I read short books like this occasionally when I am in the midst of an epic long or tedious novel just to break up the routine. I thought that this was to be a discourse on the defense of Dr. Kavorkian and looked forward to the having the issues discussed in some detail. That is far from what the book provided. Mr. Vonnegut used the good doctor fictionally as a means to control his entry through St. Peter's gates to interview for NPR individuals like Adolph Hitler, Isaac Asimov, Isaac Newton, Cl ...more
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Kurt Vonnegut, Junior was an American novelist, satirist, and most recently, graphic artist. He was recognized as New York State Author for 2001-2003.

He was born in Indianapolis, later the setting for many of his novels. He attended Cornell University from 1941 to 1943, where he wrote a column for the student newspaper, the Cornell Daily Sun. Vonnegut trained as a chemist and worked as a journali
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“OK, now let’s have some fun. Let’s talk about sex. Let’s talk about women. Freud said he didn’t know what women wanted. I know what women want. They want a whole lot of people to talk to. What do they want to talk about? They want to talk about everything.

What do men want? They want a lot of pals, and they wish people wouldn’t get so mad at them.

Why are so many people getting divorced today? It’s because most of us don’t have extended families anymore. It used to be that when a man and a woman got married, the bride got a lot more people to talk to about everything. The groom got a lot more pals to tell dumb jokes to.

A few Americans, but very few, still have extended families. The Navahos. The Kennedys.

But most of us, if we get married nowadays, are just one more person for the other person. The groom gets one more pal, but it’s a woman. The woman gets one more person to talk to about everything, but it’s a man.

When a couple has an argument, they may think it’s about money or power or sex, or how to raise the kids, or whatever. What they’re really saying to each other, though, without realizing it, is this:
“You are not enough people!”

I met a man in Nigeria one time, an Ibo who has six hundred relatives he knew quite well. His wife had just had a baby, the best possible news in any extended family.

They were going to take it to meet all its relatives, Ibos of all ages and sizes and shapes. It would even meet other babies, cousins not much older than it was. Everybody who was big enough and steady enough was going to get to hold it, cuddle it, gurgle to it, and say how pretty it was, or handsome.

Wouldn't you have loved to be that baby?”
“Tis better to have love and lust
Than to let our apparatus rust.”
More quotes…