Lori's Book Nook

Vonnegut Dies

Posted on: April 12, 2007

Oh, today is a sad day for the reading world. From this article:

NEW YORK (AP) – In books such as “Slaughterhouse-Five,” “Cat’s Cradle,” and “Hocus Pocus,” Kurt Vonnegut mixed the bitter and funny with a touch of the profound.

Vonnegut, regarded by many critics as a key influence in shaping 20th-century American literature, died Wednesday at 84. He had suffered brain injuries after a recent fall at his Manhattan home, said his wife, photographer Jill Krementz.

In a statement, Norman Mailer hailed Vonnegut as “a marvelous writer with a style that remained undeniably and imperturbably his own. … I would salute him – our own Mark Twain.”

“He was sort of like nobody else,” said another fellow author, Gore Vidal. “Kurt was never dull.”

Vonnegut’s works – more than a dozen novels plus short stories, essays and plays – contained elements of social commentary, science fiction and autobiography.

The article continues at some length — very good piece.

His official website.

His Wikipedia entry.

8 Responses to "Vonnegut Dies"

I think my favourite is Hocus Pocus. I read the other two ‘biggies’ when I was in my late teens/early twenties and probably missed a lot of their significance.

I’ve read some of his stuff — I’ve never been a big fan. But what influence! He was always mentioned in surprising contexts…everywhere.

This is a good BBC article about Mr Vonnegut – the last quote is quite funny.

Hmmm… that link didn’t come out. Trying again…

Obituary: Kurt Vonnegut

Okay. That’s funny (the last quote, that is). 🙂

My older brother had a collection of his works when I was a kid. I used to raid my brother’s bookcase all the time, and I loved Vonnegut’s stuff even though I was too young to understand some of the satire. My favorites were The Sirens of Titan and Cat’s Cradle, which i just finished rereading.

I just heard that David Halberstan was killed in an auto accident a couple of days ago too. I’ve only read a couple of his, but I really liked them.

David Halberstan? Don’t know his stuff.

But damn! It’s always sad when we lose a good writer.

Oops, misspelled – it’s David Halberstam with an “m” on the end. He wrote nonfiction exclusively I think. I read The Best and the Brightest about the Vietnam war and The Fifties about postwar America, both of which were quite good. I also read the book he wrote about NFL coach Bill Belichick, which I think is the only book about sports that I actually liked (but I don’t generally read books about sports).

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