By Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

Rating: 4 stars

I’m not really sure what to say about this book, to be honest. It’s a classic for a reason, as Vonnegut writes a fictionalised account of his war, climaxing with with firebombing of Germany, using his protagonist, Billy Pilgrim, to talk about the horror of war and its aftermath, as Pilgrim comes “unstuck in time” and is abducted by aliens, both of which can be read as metaphors for PTSD and ways to escape the middle of war.

Billy is a passive character, allowing whatever happens to happen to him, secure in his belief that you can always focus on the more pleasant moments of your life, and with his catchphrase, “so it goes” always to hand.

The book is short and easy to read, or would be if it weren’t for the brutal nature of the subject. Vonnegut describes it clear and without sentiment, leaving the reader to make up their own mind, although even without polemic, it’s fairly clear what his point of view is.

Book details

Publisher: Vintage Classics
Year of publication: 1969

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