My Blogcritics review of Kurt Vonnegut’s A Man Without a Country has prompted a fairly heated and at times nasty comment war at that site. Of course, it seems many of the comments have nothing to do with the book itself. Perhaps it is a reflection of some of the points Vonnegut was making with his own political opinions.
I also saw Vonnegut’s appearances on Real Time with Bill Maher and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. The appearance on Maher’s show was, put politely, brief and little more than a toss-off (although George Carlin was excellent in his appearance on the panel on the show). The Daily Show appearance revealed the frailty that evidently comes with Vonnegut’s age. At the same time, it showed that his talent for wit and parody are still largely intact. In fact, although there wasn’t time to air it, Vonnegut left Stewart with a list of Liberal Crap I Never Want To Hear Again.
Vonnegut will forever loom large as one of my favorite authors and I dread the day we hear of his passing.
UPDATE: As far behind as I am on keeping up on things this week, I just noticed the AP reports that A Man Without a Country has reached the top 10 at both Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.com and the publisher has already more than doubled its first printing, from 50,000 copies to 110,000.
I have been a soreheaded occupant of a file drawer labeled “science fiction” … and I would like out, particularly since so many serious critics regularly mistake the drawer for a urinal.
Kurt Vonnegut, Wampeters, Foma & Granfalloons