Monday, September 17, 2007

Slaughterhouse 5 - post III

Because I was dropping a wardrobe off for a colleague at work I drove into today and that meant no reading. Add to that a business lunch and there was no chance to even pick up a bit of Poe. I’m almost running out of time with the Poe and am in my penultimate week to get the review over to the Penguin Classics site so will get stuck back into that tomorrow.

In the meantime there was a chance to get through the final pages on the Vonnegut. An odd book but very powerful in the end and one of those slow burners that twists and turns in your mind as it fuses all sorts of thoughts.

Bullet points between pages 124 – 157

* Billy Pilgrim time travels between the war, his wedding and his death meeting some interesting people on the way including the science fiction writer Kilgore Trout who has never met a fan before and lives in the same town as Billy

* Billy is reminded of his anniversary night when the optometrist barber shop quarter, who were to die in the plane crash, sang and the expressions on their faces reminded him of the horror of war

* Back on the planet run by the aliens he has fathered a child with ex porn star actress Wild Montana and the gossip papers speculate that she has been murdered to try and explain her long absence

* Billy’s wife Valencia dies trying to visit him in the hospital after getting carbon monoxide poisoning after losing her exhaust in a car crash and for days Billy appears to be a vegetable that can take nothing in

* But when he does talk he is happy to share his recollections about Dresden and the night it was bombed and the moon like appearance of the dead space that remained afterwards and although historians argue it was justified in war it killed tens of thousands of innocent people

* Billy along with Vonnegut were put to work to try and dig the corpses out of the rubble and the book ends with that image of the horror of death on a mass scale being enough to flip anyone’s mind looking for a way out of a planet that is full of people that can’t help killing themselves

A review will follow shortly…

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