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Killing Game Paperback – August 1, 1989


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 108 pages
  • Publisher: Grove/Atlantic (August 1989)
  • ISBN-10: 039417822X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0394178226
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.1 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,128,635 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ken Miller on June 9, 2004
Format: Hardcover
In THE KILLING GAME, playwright Eugene Ionesco has set a play in a small town during an outbreak of plague. Citizens fall one after another, and the town is transformed from a gossipy, boring burg (where the townspeople all speak in cliches) into a maelstrom of paranoia and horror, as hundreds of citizens literally drop dead.
Meanwhile, a dark, hooded and cloaked figure walks amongst the townspeople. He's like the angel of death, or the grim reaper, or something of that fashion.
THE KILLING GAME is one of Ionesco's last plays. Much like the plots of his other plays, like THE CHAIRS, or RHINOCEROS, or AMEDEE, the central plot device is one of proliferation and acceleration. Something is accruing. The dead bodies are piling up. (As in Rhinoceros, where the citizens are all being turned into rhinoceri, or Amedee, where the dead body is growing and growing, and the mushrooms are multiplying in the apartment) As the townspeople are confronted by this crisis, their hypocrisy, crass opportunism, and arrant selfishness is on display.
Does this sound depressing? It's not. Ionesco is funny. During one short scene, two people puzzle over the accumulation of bodies. Moments ago, there were but 2 in a certain spot. Now there are eleven. One wonders if the proliferation happened before or after they died. His companion wonders if it was done "by computer." Through scenes such as this, Ionesco lightens the mood.
THE KILLING GAME is a witty and scathing look at the folly of man. Overall, I don't believe it is one of Ionesco's best plays. Still, it's the work of a modern master. For a reader fond of RHINOCEROS, THE BALD SOPRANO, THE CHAIRS, or any of Ionesco's better known plays, THE KILLING GAME will be a satisfying read.
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