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Sunday, 18 August 2019

Book Review: Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut

Slaughterhouse-Five is about Billy Pilgrim’s survival of the firebombing of Dresden as a prisoner-of-war during World War II and is often cited as one of the most enduring anti-war novels of all time.

“How nice — to feel nothing, and still get full credit for being alive.”
Let me be real here - it’s times like these that I am so thankful for bookstagram. Never in my life would I have picked up this book if it wasn’t for this platform... and I am so incredibly glad I did as it surprised me in the BEST way possible.

You think this book is about one thing... and then it kinda goes down a different path that I did NOT see coming and all of a sudden there’s science fiction thrown into the mix?! Whaaaat! Yet it works SO WELL. These may even have been my favourite parts of the book!

The narrative is non-linear as we jump back and forth in time and yet it doesn’t feel disjointed in the slightest. There’s a lot of repetition as well, which again, doesn’t bother me, because Vonnegut just executes it all so seamlessly and effectively. A lot of it is just downright absurd and crazy, but if I’ve said it once I’ll say it a million times... it just works!!

I simply adored so many of the messages in this book, whether it was the anti-war stance, the commentaries on life and death, or just the fact it makes you stop and think. And it’s so goddamn funny.

There are so many books that I’ve read during my 30 before 30 challenge that I’ve thought “well, once was enough! I shan’t see you again...” but I will definitely revisit this at some point. It’s got a hold on me.

So it goes...

4.5 stars.

Johann
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