Books

Book Review: Welcome To The Monkey House / Palm Sunday by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

What should I say? Collections are tricky. Some stories and thought pieces will make you smile, others make you want to skip ahead. And this book is a combination of two previous collection books. One about Vonnegut’s short stories and another about his thought pieces. There were places where I was in love, like with the futuristic government with equalizing all the citizens alike with handicaps. The skinny had to wear weights, the intelligent had their heads filled with random noises to interrupt their thought processes, the beautiful wore bags over their heads, the graceful dancers had restrictions as did the excellent musicians. It was one of the good ones as was the play about plays and actors who are empty without the characters. Or Kurt Vonnegut Jr. interviewing himself about Dresden. There are so many thoughts, ideas, and issues to speculate in this book that reading it could take a lifetime.

But of course, there were those pieces that didn’t speak to me. Those that I read through and found no resonance in me. Maybe I wasn’t the right audience for the beautiful girl who is not ever seen as a human being, only as a thing, or the soldier going AWOL for his childhood sweetheart or the long and gruesome Vonnegut family history. It is okay. I don’t expect Vonnegut to play a tune for me or dance like those electric monkeys with symbals every time amusing me with his stories about his thesis paper. That is not how it goes.

My take on this dual edition is that I didn’t care for it. I was surprised that I need a break between Vonneguts. But this is not the book’s fault, it’s me. Honest to Space Aliens.

Thank you for reading! And if you are like me and let Vonnegut sneak inside you, so you hear his voice, take a break.

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