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Timequake Paperback – August 1, 1998
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The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
"This is the indispensible Vonnegut."
San Francisco Chronicle
"Wry and trenchant . . . highly entertaining."
The New York Times Book Review
"His funniest book since Breakfast of Champions . . . There are nuggets of Vonnegutian wisdom throughout."
"Timequake is a novel by, and starring, Kurt Vonnegut . . . What Vonnegut does, which no one can do better, is give a big postmodern shrug . . . You've got to love him."
The Washington Post Book World
"Humorous, sardonic . . . Timequake makes for irresistible reading that's loaded with more important truths than it lets on . . . Moralizing has never been funnier."
"Vonnegut is at his best."
Atlanta Journal & Constitution
About the Author
Kurt Vonnegut, one of the most acclaimed American writers of the past century, died in New York City on April 11, 2007. He was the New York Times bestselling author of fourteen novels, including such literary classics as Slaughterhouse-Five, Cat’s Cradle and God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater. Penguin Group (USA) was fortunate to publish several of Mr. Vonnegut’s books, including the novels Timequake and Hocus Pocus as well as a collection of short fiction, Bagombo Snuff Box.
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Top customer reviews
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Vonnegut's writing has always helped me feel I am not alone
Timequake isn’t a novel, although it contains fiction. It isn’t Science Fiction, but the main idea is that the universe is re-setting every 10 years with a movement in time, and there is no free will - and Vonnegut’s alter ego, failed Science Fiction writer Kilgore Trout, is a main character. It’s not a true autobiography or collection of essays, but they pop up all through the book. It is Vonnegut looking back, ruminating like a kindly grandfather, and it’s just awesome.
Yes, I’m biased. Highly recommended, of course.
Vonnegut was my favorite writer when I was a college student in the 1980's. We then moved away from each other but I wanted to read his later work, especially Timequake after he died to see what had changed. This is a fascinating book. The old science fiction writer Kilgore Trout not only re-emerges, he becomes a leader of sort after the return of free will, the end of the Timequake. Apparently the universe no longer saw the point in continuing to expand and as predicted using all sorts of mathematics by Stephen Hawkings, time did strange things. Everyone on earth relived 10 years. I was expecting time to run backwards but this is even better. Dead men come back to life only to die again, and no one can do anything about it since the universal force has suspended free will. In fact it is difficult to reinstate free will when the Timequake ends. Fortunately Kilgore Trout was there to show us the way.
As we have seen before, no Vonnegut book is complete without a long Hitchcockian appearance by the author himself. At this point in his career, Vonnegut writes himself into key chapters without hiding his presence as he did earlier. In fact he is the central character in several scenes. We also learn some more about how a great writer worked and how the generational transition to TV was not good for either Trout or Vonnegut. Timequake is easy to read. Vonnegut likes short chapters although it is not really clear why they begin and end since the topics do not necessarily change.
I do not recommend this book to readers who are unfamiliar with Vonnegut, as this is not at all representative of his other works. However, if you've read his fiction and would like to know a little more about his inspirations, views, and personality, you'll love it.