Friday, 21 September 2012

Vonnegut's Friday

Gain New Blog FollowersAnother Friday has come and with it another chance to visit other blogs and socialize! Screw packing, I'm blogging! Follow Friday is hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee and this week's question is:

Q: What hyped up book was worth all of the fuss?

I don't know whether this counts as a book hype, but if it does it's going to be a popular answer: Harry Potter. I got the first book in German from a family member who works at a massive German publisher, who happened to publish Harry Potter. I loved the first book so much and was hooked straight away. In my mind, the hype didn't start until later, when the movies came out. And I have never been disappointed by either the books or the movies, which doesn't mean I always agree with what happened in the books. For example, the entire thing in St Pancras in the last book. I did like it, but it was also a bit strange. But the hype around Harry Potter was definitely deserved and I don't know anyone who regretted really getting into the series.

I am currently reading 'Breakfast of Champions' by Kurt Vonnegut, which is great, he's an amazing author. So I decided to use that one for Book Beginnings (Rose City Reader) and Friday 56 (Freda's Voice).
'This is a tale of a meeting of two lonesome, skinny, fairly old white men on a planet which was dying fast. One of them was a science-fiction writer named Kilgore Trout. He was a nobody at the time, and he supposed his life was over. He was mistaken. As a consequence of the meeting, he became one of the most beloved and respected human beings in history. The man he met was an automobile dealer, a Pontiac dealer named Dwayne Hoover. Dwayne Hoover was on the brink of going insane.'
This is so typical of Vonnegut's writing style throughout the book. Straightforward, plain and really funny. His humor is so dry and it really feels like you are sitting in a cafe with an old friend who is telling you a story.

'Dwayne Hoover sat in the used Plymouth Fury in his own vacant lot for an hour, listening to West Virginia. He was told about health insurance for pennies a day, about how to get better performance from his car. He was told what to do about constipation. He was offered a Bible which had everything that God or Jesus had actually said out loud printed in red capital letters. He was offered a plant which would attract and eat disease-carrying insects in his home. All this was stored away in Dwayne’s memory, in case he should need it later on. He had all kinds of stuff in there.'

Again, the language and writing is  really straight forward, he describes what his character heard without being overly dramatic and is thereby able to capture exactly what it is like to listen to those kind of radio shows: loads of information you don't need but you still remember.

I decided, because this is a Friday, to share one of the drawings Vonnegut has made for the book. They are absolutely amazing and it is just so funny to read a book by a literary genius and have him say:
There was a picture of a flamingo sandblasted on the glass of the bathtub enclosure. It looked like this:
I'd say it's a pretty good drawing of a flamingo, which just goes to show how amazing Vonnegut is. I have to warn you, I'm turning into a major Vonnegroupie!

So, what have you got for us this Friday? Don't hesitate to post your link in the comments below!


  1. I really want to read this one. I am not sure why I haven't yet read it, but now I must! Loved the language....


  2. I knew HP would be a popular pick this week. :)
    Here's my FF..
    Have a great day!
    *Old follower.

  3. I didn't even think about Harry Potter as an answer but this is so true. I tend to think there is Harry Potter on one level of book existence then everything else.

    My follow friday! Please visit!

  4. hi Juli! i'm glad you featured Vonnegut. i have a few of his books and one of them is Breakfast of Champions! i bought a copy last year and i almost forgot about it. lol. have a great weekend and thanks for stopping by my blog earlier! c",)

  5. I agree with you!!
    Harry Potter (both movies AND books)have always lived up to the hype!

    Happy Friday!
    Old follower-
    My FF

  6. I'm also reading a Vonnegut story. Slaughterhouse-Five is the only novel of his I've read, but since I live in Pontiac, I'm very curious about Breakfast of Champions.

    Here's my Book Beginnings Post.

  7. I love your Friday 56/Beginnings choice. A perfect description of what you'd hear on the radio, and funny because it's so true.
    Why haven't I read Vonnegut's books? I know I'd love them! Now I will.
    Here's my Friday 56 and Beginnings post.

  8. Love the writing, it flows nicely.

  9. Hopping through. I can't imagine not liking HP. I do have one friend who read the first book and wasn't a big fan - only last year...I begged her for years to read it. I encouraged her to keep going because the books get better. She really needs to read them since she has a 2 year old boy and is an elementary school librarian.
    My Hop

  10. I have a sister in law that I have been trying to get her to read HP so far she hasn't gotten into yet but I keep at her.

    My FF

  11. I remember when the first HP book came out and I bought it not knowing I was gettng into :) Definitely worth the hype! And more!

    Btw, I have a gveaway happening. Awesome book called The Weeping Empress:

  12. Really like the tone of those excerpts from Vonnegut - I enjoy that style of throw away dry humour - will have to add one of his titles to my reading list.

  13. Harry Potter is super hyped XD I actually started reading it before hearing any of the hype, it was assigned to me in a class I was taking... and I fell in love!

    Old follower