Thursday, September 29, 2011


Sirens of Titan, Kurt Vonnegut, Dell Publishing, 1959, 326 pp

Vonnegut's second novel started off great for me. The whole thing about the chronosynclastic infundibulum being "those places...where all the different kinds of truth fit together" struck me as pretty cool. I thought the hapless irresponsible Malachi Constant, richest man in America, was going to get straightened out and find the meaning of life.

Well, he did, but it did not make him happy. Rumfoord, who at first appeared to me as someone who had the good of mankind at heart, turned out to be quite the opposite. He didn't end up happy either. That terrible antisocial kid Chrono becomes the only guy who redeems himself in any way.

The story just seemed to sputter out exactly the way some people's lives do and I found that depressing. So Vonnegut fooled me, which is OK because I actually don't mind when authors jerk me around a bit. In fact, at this point in my life, I also believe that we live in an indifferent universe but we still ought to love "whoever is around to be loved" while we do our best to survive, keep the planet going and practice kindness when at all possible.

(Sirens of Titan is available in paperback and ebook by order from Once Upon A Time Bookstore.)

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