Jeff Scott's Reviews > Cat's Cradle

Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
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's review
Jun 14, 08

really liked it
bookshelves: 1001books, science-fiction, fiction, classics
Read in May, 2008

This is a strange book. The main character (Jonah), sets off to write a book called The Day the World Ended. It was to be about the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. It wasn't to be about the bomb or the background to it, but about what everyone was doing that day when the bomb was dropped. It was also about the main who invented the bomb. A Felix Honniker. During this exploration he is severly sidetracked by people who knew felix. It leads him to a third world country where honneker's children live like kings and queens thanks to honneker's invention, ice-nine. Ice nine can make all liquid freeze at extremely warm temperatures. Its purpose was to prevent the army from marching in the mud. It would freeze the mud. The honnerker's have another weapon on their third world country island of San Lorenzo, Bokonism. Bokonism is a religion of nothingness. Vnnegut uses this religion as a commentary on the human condition. The need to have an extreme good and an extreme evil to bring balance into the word. It rings of stories like 1984 with the concept of the forever war and fighting the eternal enemy. The government is always searching for Bokonin, and never finds him. The story is laced with referrals to this faith. In the end the book is never finished and becomes the book you are reading, although the title of the book comes true.

Great passages:

"If I were a younger man. I would write a history of human stupididty, and I would climbe to the top of Mount McCabe and lie down on my back with my history for a pillow, and I would take from the ground some of the blue white poison that makes statues of men, and I would make a statue of myself, lying on my back, grinning horribly and thumbing my nose at You Know Who."

"We are gathered here friends, he said, to honor ok goonyerachamactorz rut zemocratys (Day of the One Hundred Martrys to Democracy), children dead, all dead, all murdreed in war. It is customeary on days like this to call such lost children men. I am unable to call them that for one simple reason, that in the same war in which ok goon moratoozrz tut zamoo crazya died, my own son died. My soul insists that I mourn not a man, but a child"

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