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Slaughterhouse-Five
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February 2017: Quirky > Slaughterhouse Five - Kurt Vonnegut - 3 stars

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Kelly | 767 comments In this classic the character Billy Pilgrim has been in War World II, becomes an optometrist, has a family, and talks about his being taken by aliens to the planet Tralfamadore. He is also a time traveler which gives the book has a non-linear format.

The bombing of Dresden, Germany during the war has a large impact on Billy. He was there as a prisoner of war and saw the aftermath. Billy returns to it often. I found it interesting that Kurt Vonnegut himself was also a prisoner of war in Dresden and survived the bombing by being in a slaughterhouse. I liked how the author was the narrator of the book, adding an additional connection.

The book brings up ideas of free will, fate, religion and revenge. Although I viewed Billy's time captured by aliens as far fetched, it is here that a lot of the free will ideas are discussed. Interestingly Billy does not describe his time there as unhappy.

There are not many characters in this book that come across as likable. Billy himself is not perceived well by others much of the time. But being liked or cared about does not seem to be what the author is trying to accomplish. Instead we question what is happening. Vonnegut also has Billy think about the cycle of his life and death, knowing it will not change. "So it goes."


message 2: by Regina Lindsey (new)

Regina Lindsey | 1005 comments I keep flirting with this one but never can quite commit to reading it.


Anita Pomerantz | 6238 comments Regina wrote: "I keep flirting with this one but never can quite commit to reading it."

I liked it a little better than Kelly, but it truly is quirky . . .and not something you really go into it with the idea that it's going to be enjoyable to read. I just wanted to read it because it is a famous classic, and with that mindset, I thought it was interesting.


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