Thursday, April 26, 2007

Why I recommend "Breakfast of Champions"

by Kurt Vonnegut

I finished reading Breakfast of Champions, which is a deeply sad book. Wiki describes it as satire. I suppose there’s some humor here, but in general what I find is a well of despair. I have to give it two thumbs up for just how painfully despairing Vonnegut was able to make it. It is populated with characters who are filled with “bad chemicals” and who lack free will. Here’s a snippet:

“Listen: Bunny’s mother and my mother were different sorts of human beings, but they were both beautiful in exotic ways, and they both boiled over with chaotic talk about love and peace and wars and evil and desperation, of better days coming by and by, of worse days coming by and by. And both our mothers committed suicide. Bunny’s mother ate Drāno. My mother ate sleeping pills, which wasn’t nearly as horrible.”

And so on.

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