Saturday, May 27, 2017

Look at the Birdie (Review)

Publisher: Delacorte Press
Release Date: October 20th, 2009
Genre: Short Stories/Fiction

My Review (4.5/5 stars*)

Look at the Birdie is my first experience with Kurt Vonnegut's books. It's taken me a great deal of time to find myself in the right reading state of mind to pursue a novel with such a renown author attached. I always have the tendency to push away from mainstream authors, or even sometimes classics as it feels nearly sacred to read or write about them. Call me crazy but sometimes even though I find a book so epic I just can't even find the words to describe and harness my feelings into a review.

Vonnegut isn't just a storyteller but a mindfully talented inventor who delivers raw scrutiny of society as he sees it by unique analyzation. He tells all his stories simply yet underlays each one with human observation & emotion. It's a compilation of unusualyet smart, near-brilliant insights that help form each creative tale.

Look at the Birdie is exactly the novel for those people who haven't read anything by this author before because it gives you plenty of amazing samples of previously unpublished short stories that will make you a fan of his work. So if you're uncertain where to begin in his collection of novels this is certainly the place. Each one tugs at a distinct part of you which is why I couldn't put it down. Some are very short reads (100 pages) or as little as 10 pages but all of them pack an unforeseen twist.

If you're introspective, and into the strange often unpredictable nature of life's anomalies Look At The Birdie should be your next book. I rather enjoyed it in many regards.


Look at the Birdie is a collection of fourteen previously unpublished short stories from one of the most original writers in all of American fiction. In this series of perfectly rendered vignettes, written just as he was starting to find his comic voice, Kurt Vonnegut paints a warm, wise, and funny portrait of life in post—World War II America–a world where squabbling couples, high school geniuses, misfit office workers, and small-town lotharios struggle to adapt to changing technology, moral ambiguity, and unprecedented affluence. 

Here are tales both cautionary and hopeful, each brimming with Vonnegut's trademark humor and profound humanism. A family learns the downside of confiding their deepest secrets into a magical invention. A man finds himself in a Kafkaesque world of trouble after he runs afoul of the shady underworld boss who calls the shots in an upstate New York town. A quack psychiatrist turned "murder counselor" concocts a novel new outlet for his paranoid patients. While these stories reflect the anxieties of the postwar era that Vonnegut was so adept at capturing– and provide insight into the development of his early style–collectively, they have a timeless quality that makes them just as relevant today as when they were written. It's impossible to imagine any of these pieces flowing from the pen of another writer; each in its own way is unmistakably, quintessentially Vonnegut. 


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