Book Review: Slapstick, or Lonesome No More! by Kurt Vonnegut

Slapstick, or Lonesome No More! was a weird melancholic book. The satire was sadder and deeper than Kurt Vonnegut’s usual, “Hi ho.” To be honest, I’m not sure where I stand with this book. I haven’t yet recovered by the feeling of loneliness and monstrosity of the abnormal or from “Hi ho.” Somehow I have to make peace with the only sentence I can use to sum up the book: Life is absurd, and we make it worse.

Kurt Vonnegut makes us sympathize with a “monster” and see the loneliness of humanity through his eyes. He writes: “Without knowing what we were doing, Eliza and I were putting the traditional curse of monsters on normal creatures. We were asking for respect.” There are those who we have reserved hate and disgust: the other, the weird, the abnormal, and Wilbur forbid that those someones are more intelligent than us. That merits a tragedy. The sorrowful kind which ends up with death.

I’m sorry, but I don’t find words to make justice for Slapstick. It defies convention in so many ways that I think the book has to be experienced more than analyzed. However, I wouldn’t recommend this book to anyone who hasn’t read Vonnegut before because you have to have a sense of his writing before Slapstick opens up to you the way it should. “Hi ho.” The book is a love letter to a sister in a lonesome planet we call Earth. See you later!

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