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About the book
  • Published: 7 June 1991
  • ISBN: 9780099800200
  • Imprint: Vintage Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 192
  • RRP: $14.99

Slaughterhouse 5

50th Anniversary Edition




Kurt Vonnegut's masterpiece, one of the very best anti-war novels ever written, a book both beloved and banned - now rejacketed with brilliant, witty new look for the Vonnegut backlist

‘The great, urgent, passionate American writer of our century, who offers us a model of the kind of compassionate thinking that might yet save us from ourselves.’ George Saunders

Prisoner of war, optometrist, time-traveller – these are the life roles of Billy Pilgrim, hero of this miraculously moving, bitter and funny story of innocence faced with apocalypse. Slaughterhouse Five is one of the world’s great anti-war books. Centring on the infamous fire-bombing of Dresden in the Second World War, Billy Pilgrim’s odyssey through time reflects the journey of our own fractured lives as we search for meaning in what we are afraid to know.

‘An extraordinary success. A book to read and reread. He is a true artist’ New York Times Book Review

  • Pub date: 7 June 1991
  • ISBN: 9780099800200
  • Imprint: Vintage Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 192
  • RRP: $14.99

About the Author

Kurt Vonnegut

Kurt Vonnegut was born in Indianapolis in 1922 and studied biochemistry at Cornell University. An army intelligence scout during the Second World War, he was captured by the Germans and witnessed the destruction of Dresden by Allied bombers, an experience which inspired his classic novel Slaughterhouse-Five. After the war he worked as a police reporter, an advertising copywriter and a public relations man for General Electric. His first novel Player Piano (1952) achieved underground success. Cat's Cradle (1963) was hailed by Graham Greene as 'one of the best novels of the year by one of the ablest living authors'. His eighth book, Slaughterhouse-Five was published in 1969 and was a literary and commercial success, and was made into a film in 1972. Vonnegut is the author of thirteen other novels, three collections of stories and five non-fiction books. Kurt Vonnegut died in 2007.

Also by Kurt Vonnegut

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Praise for Slaughterhouse 5

“The supreme novel of an extraordinary year.”

John Sutherland, The Times

“Mr Vonnegut knows a great deal about what is probably the largest massacre in modern history - the fire-bombing of Dresden in 1945. Slaughterhouse Five is a reaction to the event by one of our most gifted and incisive novelists. A work of keen literary artistry”

Joseph Heller, author of 'Catch-22'

“The individuality of Vonnegut's style is a curious yet perfect match for the pain of the emotional content. A humane, human book that always remains a work of art rather than biography, no matter how apparent the author's presence”

Kate Atkinson

“Unique...one of the writers who map our landscapes for us, who give names to the places we know best”

Doris Lessing

“Funny, satirical, compelling, outrageous, fanciful, mordant, fecund and at the bottom-line, simply stoned-out-of-its-mind”

Los Angeles Times

“There are writers who create a lot of readers, and there are writers who create a lot of writers, and Vonnegut was both”

Jonathan Safran Foer

“Devastating and supremely human”

Guardian

“Agonising, funny. His eloquent concern transforms something as pedestrian as a war movie seen back to front into a vision which, in its weird way, is as effecting as any short passage ever written against war”

Time magazine

“Very tough and very funny...sad and delightful...very Vonnegut”

New York Times

“A most courageous account of the human condition; at the same time a satire so funny it makes one laugh aloud”

Evening Standard

“Splendid... A Funny book at which you are not permitted to laugh, a sad book without tears”

Life

“Extraordinary… A remarkably nice and clever book… Billy is clearly something of a stand-in for his creator, a means of talking to the point about the horror in Dresden, a hushed-up massacre worse than Hiroshima. The author intervenes frequently enough throughout his tale to establish that: his private pain keeps thumbing up from the page”

Observer

“A rare accomplishment... it is a graceful, ferociously humorous, sarcastic and ultimately compassionate parable about man's power for evil and his capacity for grace”

Sunday Times


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