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Timequake Paperback – August 1, 1998
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Timequake's a mongrel; it is half novel, half memoir, the project of a decade's worth of writer's block, a book "that didn't want to be written." The premise is standard-issue Vonnegut: "...a timequake, a sudden glitch in the space-time continuum, made everybody and everything do exactly what they'd done during past decades, for good or ill, a second time..." Simultaneously, the author's favorite tricks are on display--frequent visits with the shopworn science fiction writer Kilgore Trout, a Hitchcockian appearance by the author at the book's end, and frequent authorial opining on love, war, and society. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Library Journal
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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What I loved: the idea and creativity of a "timequake" and the scraps here and there of the timequake.
What I didn't expect: these little extra memoirs and the last third of the novel. You find yourself reading "a completely different book" consisting of Vonnegut's own personal reflections; you can just about call it an autobiography.
In conclusion, this is probably not the book for you if you're looking for something that flows and has well, a plot. Otherwise, if you're simply in for chunks of Vonnegut's classic satire, look no further!
Is this is awesome as Breakfast Of Champions or Cat's Cradle or Slaughterhouse-Five? Hard to tell. All of Vonnegut's work, at least for me, sort of melds together into a single mishapen tapestry. Vonnegut is Vonnegut. His writing is addictive as nicotine or heroin. I gotta have it.
One, Kurt Vonnegut has become a cranky old man. The book is full of diatribes about how newfangled gadgets like TVs and computers have ruined the world. He even occasionally lets slip a wistful cliche like "the lost art of conversation." In contrast to his SLAUGHTERHOUSE-FIVE character Billy Pilgrim, Vonnegut himself has become stuck in time, viewing today's world from the distant vantage of the 1930s and 40s, and declaring the modern era postliterate, and therefore fallen. He even lends authority to his viewpoint by finally acknowledging his place in the pantheon of the century's greatest writers, a place which he richly deserves.
And that brings me to the second insight that TIMEQUAKE makes readily apparent: Vonnegut's literary genius is undimmed. The man can put words together like nobody else on earth -- his passages and paragraphs are so mind-altering that they ought to be considered controlled substances. The timequake at the center of this book is a wonderfullly pliable symbol, allowing Vonnegut fresh takes on all his familiar themes: war, suffering, the arts, the human capacity for evil, and the mysterious dynamic of free will versus predetermination. What's more, the book is unfailingly, hysterically funny, resonating with that particular Vonnegutian laugh, a laugh that carries an abyss of blackness within its mirth, but is nonetheless somehow comforting.
Those who complain that the book is rambling or lacks direction are missing the boat entirely. As Vonnegut himself explains midway through the book (perhaps in anticipation of this very criticism), his writing style is that of a "basher.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'm a big vonnegut fan, but this book should not have been published. It is basically snippets from a failed story he had written and admitted "just didn't work"... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Joseph Cunningham
This book has moments of utter brilliance, made possible by the accumulation of experiences and life achieved by having spent 8 decades on this planet. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Sharon Schoen
*Timequake* was one of Vonnegut's last books - maybe the last book? - and at this point in his career he mostly just wanted to chat to the reader about the things that mattered to... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Karen Wingoof
I have a love-hate relationship with Vonnegut. Interesting introspective work. Don't believe anything he ever states as fact. Vonnegut fans should read it for sure... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Zachary P. Stewart
Was NOT signed by author. Received a PARTIAL refund. Very very irritating! !Published 8 months ago by Samson M Holbrook
A must for Kurt's fans. Novel and autobiography brilliantly intertwined.Published 11 months ago by Al
Daughter's favorite author and she said it was one of Kurts good books.Published 11 months ago by Kath