Book Review: Armageddon in Retrospect

Amazon Synopsis: “A fitting tribute to a literary legend and a profoundly humane humorist, Armageddon in Retrospect is a collection of twelve previously unpublished writings on war and peace. Imbued with Vonnegut’s trademark rueful humor and outraged moral sense, the pieces range from a letter written by Vonnegut to his family in 1945, informing them that he’d been taken prisoner by the Germans, to his last speech, delivered after his death by his son Mark, who provides a warmly personal introduction to the collection. Taken together, these pieces provide fresh insight into Vonnegut’s enduring literary genius and reinforce his ongoing moral relevance in today’s world.”

Length: 240 pages (Kindle Edition)

Publisher and date: Berkley reprinted April 7, 2009

Destiny’s Thoughts

How I found the book: I was at the library for the first time in forever. I started in the fiction section and, after picking up two random books from authors I never heard of, I thought I might want to try a familiar name. Vonnegut faintly sounded familiar to me so I decided short stories on war and peace sounded interesting enough.

How it’s written: The stories vary first and third person. It’s a great collection focused in on different aspects of war.

Who would like this book: Any one with an opinion or interest in war and peace. Or Vonnegut.

Why I like this book: I desperately love books from WWII veterans. There is something so wonderful about the way people like Vonnegut and Joseph Heller write.

The edition I read had an introduction from Mark Vonnegut, Kurt’s son. He explains that his father meticulously chose each word and had a hard time writing because he wanted to convey things perfectly. I have to say that makes a difference to me. I love typewriter times when an author just wrote things out and they were printed right away. There is something more intimate about the writing process when your words go on paper immediately. No back space or highlighting and deleting. You have to be confident in your words and then search them endlessly as you edit, rewrite, review.

Final Thoughts: This didn’t talk long to read at all and the short stories are fun and insightful.

If you’d like to buy this book, click here.

If you already read the short stories, I’d love to hear your take. I’d have to say my favorite story is “Great Day”.


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