2 B R 0 2 B

( 79 )

Overview

Everything was perfectly swell.

There were no prisons, no slums, no insane asylums, no cripples, no poverty, no wars.

All diseases were conquered. So was old age.

Death, barring accidents, was an adventure for volunteers.

Never, never, never -- not even in medieval Holland nor old Japan -- had a garden been more formal, been better tended. ...

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2 B R 0 2 B

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Overview

Everything was perfectly swell.

There were no prisons, no slums, no insane asylums, no cripples, no poverty, no wars.

All diseases were conquered. So was old age.

Death, barring accidents, was an adventure for volunteers.

Never, never, never -- not even in medieval Holland nor old Japan -- had a garden been more formal, been better tended. Every plant had all the loam, light, water, air and nourishment it could use.

A hospital orderly came down the corridor, and looked in at the mural and the muralist. "Looks so real," he said, "I can practically imagine I'm standing in the middle of it."

"What makes you think you're not in it?" said the painter. He gave a satiric smile. "It's called 'The Happy Garden of Life,' you know."

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781463899585
  • Publisher: Alan Rodgers Books
  • Publication date: 6/1/2011
  • Pages: 46
  • Sales rank: 1,232,986
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Kurt Vonnegut
Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. (November 11, 1922 - April 11, 2007) was an American writer. His works, such as Cat's Cradle, Slaughterhouse-Five, and Breakfast of Champions, blend satire, gallows humor, and science fiction. As a citizen he was a lifelong supporter of the American Civil Liberties Union and a pacifist intellectual, who often was critical of the society that he lived in. He was known for his humanist beliefs and was honorary president of the American Humanist Association.

Biography

Born in 1922, Vonnegut grew up in Indianapolis, Indiana. His architect father suffered great financial setbacks during the Depression and was unemployed for long stretches of time. His mother suffered from mental illness and eventually committed suicide in 1944, a trauma that haunted Vonnegut all his life. He attended Cornell in the early 1940s, but quit in order to enlist in the Army during WWII.

Vonnegut was shipped to Europe, fought in the Battle of the Bulge, and was captured behind enemy lines and incarcerated in a German prison camp. As a POW, he witnessed the firebombing of Dresden by Allied forces, an event of devastating magnitude that left an indelible impression on the young soldier.

After the war, Vonnegut returned home and married his high school sweetheart. In addition to two daughters and a son of their own, he and his first wife adopted three children orphaned in 1958 by the death of Vonnegut's sister Alice. (He and his second wife adopted another daughter.) The family lived in Chicago and Schenectady before settling in Cape Cod, where Vonnegut began to concentrate seriously on his writing. His first novel, the darkly dystopian Player Piano, was published in 1952 and met with moderate success. Three additional novels followed (including the critically acclaimed Cat's Cradle), but it was not until the publication of 1969's Slaughterhouse Five that Vonnegut achieved true literary stardom. Based on the author's wartime experiences in Dresden, the novel resonated powerfully in the social upheaval of the Vietnam era.

Although he is best known for his novels (a genre-blending mix of social satire, science fiction, surrealism, and black comedy), Vonnegut also wrote short fiction, essays, and plays (the best known of which was Happy Birthday, Wanda June). In addition, he was a talented graphic artist who illustrated many of his books and exhibited sporadically during his literary career. He died on April 11, 2007, after suffering irreversible brain injuries as a result of a fall.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Kurt Vonnegut
    1. Date of Birth:
      November 11, 1922
    2. Place of Birth:
      Indianapolis, Indiana
    1. Date of Death:
      April 11, 2007
    2. Place of Death:
      New York, New York

Read an Excerpt

Everything was perfectly swell.

There were no prisons, no slums, no insane asylums, no cripples, no poverty, no wars.

All diseases were conquered. So was old age.

Death, barring accidents, was an adventure for volunteers.

The population of the United States was stabilized at forty-million souls.

One bright morning in the Chicago Lying-in Hospital, a man named Edward K. Wehling, Jr., waited for his wife to give birth. He was the only man waiting. Not many people were born a day any more.

Wehling was fifty-six, a mere stripling in a population whose average age was one hundred and twenty-nine.

X-rays had revealed that his wife was going to have triplets. The children would be his first.

Young Wehling was hunched in his chair, his head in his hand. He was so rumpled, so still and colorless as to be virtually invisible. His camouflage was perfect, since the waiting room had a disorderly and demoralized air, too. Chairs and ashtrays had been moved away from the walls. The floor was paved with spattered dropcloths.

The room was being redecorated. It was being redecorated as a memorial to a man who had volunteered to die.

A sardonic old man, about two hundred years old, sat on a stepladder, painting a mural he did not like. Back in the days when people aged visibly, his age would have been guessed at thirty-five or so. Aging had touched him that much before the cure for aging was found.

The mural he was working on depicted a very neat garden. Men and women in white, doctors and nurses, turned the soil, planted seedlings, sprayed bugs, spread fertilizer.

Men and women in purple uniforms pulled up weeds, cut down plants that were oldand sickly, raked leaves, carried refuse to trash-burners.

Never, never, never--not even in medieval Holland nor old Japan--had a garden been more formal, been better tended. Every plant had all the loam, light, water, air and nourishment it could use.

A hospital orderly came down the corridor, singing under his breath a popular song:

* * * *

If you don't like my kisses, honey,

Here's what I will do:

I'll go see a girl in purple,

Kiss this sad world toodle-oo.

If you don't want my lovin',

Why should I take up all this space?

I'll get off this old planet,

Let some sweet baby have my place.

* * * *

The orderly looked in at the mural and the muralist. "Looks so real," he said, "I can practically imagine I'm standing in the middle of it."

"What makes you think you're not in it?" said the painter. He gave a satiric smile. "It's called 'The Happy Garden of Life,' you know."

"That's good of Dr. Hitz," said the orderly.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 79 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(36)

4 Star

(18)

3 Star

(5)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(20)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 98 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 10, 2011

    Makes you think

    I have to say this was interesting. It was my first read by Vonnegut and I do understand now why my son loves him.

    It's a short story about population control. For every child born that is going to live, a volunteer must die. Imagine what goes through a father's head when his wife is about to have triplets!

    I enjoyed it and it really makes me stop and think. I didn't think I would enjoy it and I was pleasantly surprised. I think I will give something else by this author a try.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 2, 2011

    Quick, thought provoking read

    It's a short journey through the mind of three men and one government some may see as idealized. 10-15 minutes takes you through the thoughts of a new father, an artist, a doctor and the government they reside in.

    If you're not thinking by the end of this then you're either a) dead or b) too narrow minded to see the possibilities beyond your own beliefs.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2015

    EmeraldEyes

    What Clan i this?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2014

    Elemnts ☺ (Other half)

    Oakclaw- "We are a clan aren't we?" He joked to Breezesong. <p> Breezesong- Rolled her eyes a her brother and said,"No, none of us she's have milk." <p> Applefal- Gratefully nods to Raven n dded away to the den.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2014

    To Autumnmoon

    Can I rp one of your kits?

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2014

    Phoenix

    {Bio up @ res 2}<p>The reddish tom padded in, his eyes taking in what lay before him.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2014

    Lightningclaw

    Pads in shivering

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2014

    Darkflame

    Sighed sadly. He rested his head on his paw

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2014

    Nightflame

    He ate

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2014

    Lilyfrost and stormfur

    The to siblings walk in and sit lookingaround

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2014

    Redfang to angleheart

    Miss u merry christmaz and shivering is pregnant

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2014

    Autumnmoon to To Autumnmoon

    Sure! Which one?

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2014

    Lightningpaw

    Wrestles aound in grass

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2015

    Soulslayer

    Hello.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2014

    Firestar

    She padded in. "I'm Firestar leader of Thistleclan. Shadowcat had a typo. It's ThistleClan not Thrushclan. I need to talk to Shadowcat. NOW."

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2014

    Emeraldflame

    Sure.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2014

    Angel

    Meet me at spell res one.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2014

    Tornadostep

    He glanced around. "I believe I will go familiarize myself with the territory. I'll be back soon!"

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2014

    Raven

    Looked at him with sincere, lavender eyes. "Thank you. It just means so much." She kindly licked him behind the ears.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2015

    Shadowcat

    For once, she had her back to the camp. She wept bitterly, for all the cats of her clan abandoned her.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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