God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian

God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian

4.5 19
by Kurt Vonnegut
     
 

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From Slapstick's "Turkey Farm" to Slaughterhouse-Five's eternity in a Tralfamadorean zoo cage with Montana Wildhack, the question of the afterlife never left Kurt Vonnegut's mind. In God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian, Vonnegut skips back and forth between life and the Afterlife as if the difference between them were rather slight. In thirty odd "interviews," Vonnegut trips

Overview

From Slapstick's "Turkey Farm" to Slaughterhouse-Five's eternity in a Tralfamadorean zoo cage with Montana Wildhack, the question of the afterlife never left Kurt Vonnegut's mind. In God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian, Vonnegut skips back and forth between life and the Afterlife as if the difference between them were rather slight. In thirty odd "interviews," Vonnegut trips down "the blue tunnel to the pearly gates" in the guise of a roving reporter for public radio, conducting interviews: with Salvatore Biagini, a retired construction worker who died of a heart attack while rescuing his schnauzer from a pit bull, with John Brown, still smoldering 140 years after his death by hanging, with William Shakespeare, who rubs Vonnegut the wrong way, and with socialist and labor leader Eugene Victor Debs, one of Vonnegut's personal heroes.
What began as a series of ninety-second radio interludes for WNYC, New York City's public radio station, evolved into this provocative collection of musings about who and what we live for, and how much it all matters in the end. From the original portrait by his friend Jules Feiffer that graces the cover, to a final entry from Kilgore Trout, God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian remains a joy.

Editorial Reviews

Time Magazine
Vonnegut is George Orwell, Dr. Caligari, and Flash Gordon compounded into one writer....A zany but moral-mad scientist.
Providence Sunday Journal
Vonnegut devotees will love this little book, and I'm sure anyone else with a sense of humor and the desire to fulfill his or her "right to know" will enjoy it as well....A tidy smorgasbord of ficto-journalism and journo-fictionalism and various other forms of writing that deftly defy classification.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
As a "reporter on the afterlife," Kurt Vonnegut bravely allows himself to be strapped to a gurney by his friend Jack Kevorkian and dispatched--round-trip--to the Pearly Gates. Or at least that's what he claims in the introduction to this series of brief pieces originally read as 90-second interludes on WNYC, Manhattan's public radio station. Revised and rewritten for this slim volume, Vonnegut's "interviews" range from the gossamer-slight to the deliciously barbed. Among the dead people he is privileged to talk to are Salvatore Biagini, a retired construction worker who died of a heart attack while rescuing his schnauzer from a pit bull; John Brown, still smoldering 140 years after his death by hanging; William Shakespeare, who spouts quotations and rubs Vonnegut the wrong way; and one of Vonnegut's own personal heroes, socialist and labor leader Eugene Victor Debs. The tables are turned on Vonnegut when he runs into Sir Isaac Newton, who is lurking near the Heaven end of the "blue tunnel" of the Afterlife. Newton, tireless in his quest for knowledge, wants to find out what the tunnel is made of, and he takes over the interview, besieging Vonnegut with questions. Unfazed, the writer moves on, looking up Martin Luther King's assassin, James Earl Ray, and Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. It is only when Dr. Kevorkian is inconveniently convicted for murder that Vonnegut is forced to desist. This may be Vonnegut (or his publishers) scraping the bottom of the barrel, but no matter: there are few writers whose scrapings we'd rather have. (Jan.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781609802097
Publisher:
Seven Stories Press
Publication date:
01/04/2011
Sold by:
Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
404,765
File size:
2 MB

What People are saying about this

Graham Greene
Vonnegut is one of the best living American writers.
John Irving
Vonnegut is our strongest writer...the most stubbornly imaginative.

Meet the Author

Born in 1922 in Indianapolis, Indiana, KURT VONNEGUT was one of the few grandmasters of modern American letters. Called by the New York Times “the counterculture’s novelist,” his works guided a generation through the miasma of war and greed that was life in the U.S. in second half of the 20th century. After a stints as a soldier, anthropology PhD candidate, technical writer for General Electric, and salesman at a Saab dealership, Vonnegut rose to prominence with the publication of Cat’s Cradle in 1963. Several modern classics, including Slaughterhouse-Five, soon followed. Never quite embraced by the stodgier arbiters of literary taste, Vonnegut was nonetheless beloved by millions of readers throughout the world. “Given who and what I am,” he once said, “it has been presumptuous of me to write so well.” Kurt Vonnegut died in New York in 2007.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
November 11, 1922
Date of Death:
April 11, 2007
Place of Birth:
Indianapolis, Indiana
Place of Death:
New York, New York
Education:
Cornell University, 1940-42; Carnegie-Mellon University, 1943; University of Chicago, 1945-47; M.A., 1971

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God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you need to laugh and wish to be enlightened through the teachings of Kurt, you must pick up this book. I laughed all the way through, and when it was over I was craving more. A great work of literary loopiness, my my my, this is worth checking out. This is a happy reader signing off, ta ta!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is good. KV does a really good job with these little interviews. KV's alter ego shows up once, although he's not quite dead. It's a fast read, and if your looking for something humorous, I highly recommend this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is brilliant! It is impossible to put down, once opened! You will laugh and truly love these wonderful conversations! It is a masterpiece! Vonnegut is a genious!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book rendered Mr. Vonnegut as my favorite author, hands down, even without my having read more than 2 of his other novels. I went out and purchased all of the rest and they're sitting like unopened Christmas presents on the floor of my apartment. PlEaSe, DO YOURSELF A FAVOR and read this book (it only takes about an hour anyway) because if that wasn't nice, I don't know what was.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Rather than waste your time going on about how Mr. Vonnegut is a genius and a prolific writer of the 20th century - I'm just going to talk about this book. Loved it! Hysterical..to the point...concise...brilliant...READ IT!
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discourseincsharpminor More than 1 year ago
I love Vonnegut and this book was no exception. His quirky social commentary is there in full force with this set of short, interview-style pieces.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Wow, what a great little book. A brief meditation on what it is to be alive and what it might be like (probably not) to be dead. Vonnegut's dark humor is once again used to take the air out of a very somber subject. His interviews with the departed are subtle and jarring all at once. Vonnegut has to considered one of the great authors of the 20th century.