Lyn's Reviews > Welcome to the Monkey House

Welcome to the Monkey House by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
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Jul 12, 2012

really liked it
Read from July 12 to 25, 2012 , read count: 1

Welcome to the Monkey House by Kurt Vonnegut is a collection of short stories from the 50s and 60s and demonstrates Vonnegut’s tremendous range as a writer.

I have read one critic who did not like Vonnegut, saying that all of his novels are essentially the same, with his voice and tone narrating each new set of facts. I agreed somewhat, but still liked the way he writes and have enjoyed every one of his works I have read.

The stories in this collection, however, written earlier than most of his novels, displays a great variety of themes and models, and though Vonnegut’s signature humor is evident in many, he shows a different, often more emotional side in many stories.

“Harrison Bergeron”, the dystopian classic, is undoubtedly the most recognizable of these shorts, but several others have clearly been influential to other writers and filmmakers. “Welcome to the Monkey House” and “Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow” both address over population, but from Vonnegut’s unique perspective.

Several stories speak to Vonnegut’s stance on demilitarization and illuminating the idiocy of industrial war making. Stories like “D.P.”, “Adam”, and “Next Door”, though, originally published in Ladies Home Journal and Cosmopolitan, reveal an unguarded sentimentality and humanity that is not as evident in much of Vonnegut’s later works.

A very good read.

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03/03/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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message 1: by Hrishabh (last edited Jun 11, 2015 07:19PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Hrishabh Chaudhary " all of his novels are essentially that same... " I have read only 5 of his books and some short stories and yes they are same on some level. The level of awesomeness!


message 2: by Lyn (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lyn Ha! You are correct, sir. That guy just did not get it.


message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

This was terribly instructive about the world to me when I read it in high school in late 70s! I wonder how many adults re-read Vonnegut as oldsters and how the perspective changes...


message 4: by Lyn (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lyn I need to reread all of these


message 5: by Michelle (new) - added it

Michelle Nice review, great observations on Vonnegut:)


message 6: by Lyn (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lyn Thanks Michelle


message 7: by Jim (new)

Jim Another GoodReader recently caused me to find (and reread after 40 years) Harrison Bergeron online. What a nice little nugget.

That story makes me believe that KV may have leaned left but was no egalitarian. It also makes me wonder if it didn't help me to look askance at egalitarian policies.


Liz Janet “Harrison Bergeron” is my favouite of his short stories, definitely need to give this book a re-read to see if I can find any new favourites once more. Do you happen to remember the critic? I would love to read what he said.


message 9: by Lyn (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lyn I cannot sorry, but I agree this deserves a reread


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