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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An outstandingly intelligent story that is a must read
Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut is by far one of the greatest novels of the 20th century. Vonnegut brings this fictional story to life with great detail at every turn. From the creation of ice nine to Bokonism, Vonnegut weaves a complex but entirely believable story. The novel begins with the main character John who is writing a book on the day the bomb was dropped on...
Published on Dec 17 2002 by Garrett Jennings

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars ok, but lacks the fun of his other sci-fi novels
There is much less humor in this Vonnegut novel than in many of his others. The characters are also less interesting than those that apppear in his other novels and plays, though there are some that reappear such as the God-guru Bokonon. I just found this novel kind of wierd, and then the apocalypse was sudden, etc. There are many of Vonnegut's typical themes:...
Published on June 3 2004 by Robert J. Crawford


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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An outstandingly intelligent story that is a must read, Dec 17 2002
By 
Garrett Jennings (Santa Cruz, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut is by far one of the greatest novels of the 20th century. Vonnegut brings this fictional story to life with great detail at every turn. From the creation of ice nine to Bokonism, Vonnegut weaves a complex but entirely believable story. The novel begins with the main character John who is writing a book on the day the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima called The Day the World Ended. His writing this book leads him to his destiny as he travels to the laboratory where the bomb was created and then to San Lorenzo where he becomes president. San Lorenzo's founder, Bokonon, created a religion for the people. This is an average idea except for the fact that Bokonism seems uncannily real, with it's own terms and practices all created by Vonnegut. This novel is a masterpiece.
Cat's Cradle is fast passed, deeply detailed, and very interesting. The novel is very ironic and a must read for everyone. Kurt Vonnegut weaves a great story that never lets you down. Through its outlandish turns and twists Vonnegut makes it seem so very real. This novel is definitely a 5 out of 5.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Cat's Cradle, March 30 2014
By 
Ned Lyttelton (Toronto, ON, CA) - See all my reviews
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One of my favourite books of all time.Never gets old. Some of the terms he invented, such as granfalloon, karass, wrang-wrang and others, express concepts for which there are no words in English.
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5.0 out of 5 stars one of vonneguts classics, Aug. 11 2013
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This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
one of kurt vonneguts classic books. i reccommend to anyone wanting to read by this author or those who have read his other books
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Magic Act, March 27 2002
By 
Timmy R. Johnson Jr. (Durant, OK United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
Kurt Vonnegut is nothing short of a magician. Call him a writer if you must, but it seems unfitting for a man who weaves yarns about new religions, Ukranian midget dancers, apocalyptic chemical inventions, and feet-rubbing fornication. Writer just doesn't do justice.
Regardless, Cat's Cradle is a wonderful read and a heck of a time. Plot, character, and setting, as always in Vonnegut's work, take a back seat to the infectuos humor and unconventional writing style of its author.
The narrator is named Jonah, a writer who wishes to conduct a non-fiction story revolving the lives of people surrounding the Atom Bomb titled "The Day The World Ended". From this moment, our wild ride begins as we are introduced to the great cast of characters, including Dr. Felix Hoenikker, one of the so-called "Fathers" of the Atom Bomb, who may or may not have created a chemical capable of turning all the worlds water supply into ice, his family, the president(dictator)of a small Pacific Island San Marcos, Papa Manzano, and his lovely daughter, all the way down to Bokonon himself, founder of the Bokonon faith which is based in foma (lies). The journey through Vonnegut's mind is a worthwile one, if nothing else for his startling creativity, and hilariously bleak view at humanity. I will leave you with this quote from the great books of Bokonon:
"Beware of the man who works hard to learn something, learns it, and finds himself no wiser than before. He is full of murderous resentment of people who are ignorant without having come by their ignorance the hard way."
Well said.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Vonnegut on the silliness of escaping fate, Feb. 23 2011
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This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
"Is it a funny book?"
"I hope so, Mom."

This said about Cat's Cradle, a novel where the world comes to an end. And it is funny realizing that humanity's foibles are anything but weak. They're actually powerful where we're condemned repeaters of past mistakes, which is why creating powerful weapons of destruction (nukes) comes with an inevitable fate. Buried in the satire Vonnegut is renowned for is this commentary on humanity's willful ignorance of history and the obviousness of screwing everything up or fate as some would have it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Just a little below 5 stars, Dec 14 2007
By 
Benjamin Anderson (Fredericton, NB CAN) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
Like most of Vonnegut's books, 'Cat's Cradle' is funny and intelligent. His wit is sharp and his observations hilarious. Definitely worth reading!
This religion is one worth living! At least it realizes it's full of it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars You'll Dig It!, July 21 2005
By 
Janette (Billings, MT) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
In Vonnegut's novel, a Manhattan novelist has decided to write a novel about what people were doing on the day that the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, which brings him into encounters with some quintissentially Vonnegutian characters- a bicycle store owner and his Hoosier wife, the children of the man who had the chief say in designing the atomic bomb (one of whom is a midget,) a refugee lounge-singer who has created his own religion (named "Bokonon,") the maniacal dictator who opposes him, and a whole host of colorful minor characters, each of whom fits into the same "karass" (the Bokonon term for a group of people that influence the outcomes of each other's fates.) Many of the twists of the story center around another creation, Ice-Nine, of the famed inventor of the atomic bomb (Felix Hoenekker,) which ultimately causes the destruction of the world (a.k.a. "The day the world went 'whoomp.'") giving itself a nice little niche in the genre of "Theater of the Absurd."
Vonnegut's novel satirizes everything about modern life, from the Cold War-era fear of the world ending with a doomsday weapon, to our scorn of avant-garde art, epitomized by the destruction and desecration of the narrator's Manhattan apartment by an up and coming artist. With the central theme that everything in life is interconnected- everyone is part of their "karass"- Vonnegut analyzes the relations between religion and government, sanity and insanity, life and death, and just about any two subjects that oppose each other. This book's wonderfully rich prose, biting criticism, and incisive black humor make this what is considered Vonnegut's best work. Cat's Cradle rules! Another book I want to recommend is The Losers' Club: Complete Restored Edition by Richard Perez -- not Vonnegut but very entertaining and FUNNY nonetheless.
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5.0 out of 5 stars You'll Dig It!, July 21 2005
By 
Janette (Billings, MT) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
In Vonnegut's novel, a Manhattan novelist has decided to write a novel about what people were doing on the day that the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, which brings him into encounters with some quintissentially Vonnegutian characters- a bicycle store owner and his Hoosier wife, the children of the man who had the chief say in designing the atomic bomb (one of whom is a midget,) a refugee lounge-singer who has created his own religion (named "Bokonon,") the maniacal dictator who opposes him, and a whole host of colorful minor characters, each of whom fits into the same "karass" (the Bokonon term for a group of people that influence the outcomes of each other's fates.) Many of the twists of the story center around another creation, Ice-Nine, of the famed inventor of the atomic bomb (Felix Hoenekker,) which ultimately causes the destruction of the world (a.k.a. "The day the world went 'whoomp.'") giving itself a nice little niche in the genre of "Theater of the Absurd."
Vonnegut's novel satirizes everything about modern life, from the Cold War-era fear of the world ending with a doomsday weapon, to our scorn of avant-garde art, epitomized by the destruction and desecration of the narrator's Manhattan apartment by an up and coming artist. With the central theme that everything in life is interconnected- everyone is part of their "karass"- Vonnegut analyzes the relations between religion and government, sanity and insanity, life and death, and just about any two subjects that oppose each other. This book's wonderfully rich prose, biting criticism, and incisive black humor make this what is considered Vonnegut's best work. Cat's Cradle rules! Another book I want to recommend is The Losers' Club: Complete Restored Edition by Richard Perez -- not Vonnegut but very entertaining and FUNNY nonetheless.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Meoooooww, Feb. 12 2005
This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
For those that like humor (think McCrae in his "Bark of the Dogwood") and great writing, (think Toole in "Confederacy of Dunces") then you'll enjoy this book. This was a great read and definitely keeps the mind going. It is a little hard to get into at first but stick with it because you will be sucked in before you know it! I couldn't stop turning the pages and have thought about many of the concepts since putting it down. Every one should be required to read this book but it that was the case then no one would want to I guess.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Doomsday was never more fun, July 19 2004
By 
Alex Frantz (San Leandro, ca USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Cat's Cradle: A Novel (Paperback)
This early classic was one of the books that made Vonnegut famous, and probably the first book where he really found successfully his particular style of black comedy. (He aimed for something similar in Sirens of Titan, but that book, with some fine moments, is uneven and significantly less successful.)
The first persom narrator is known only as Jonah, although his first sentence is the allusive, "Call me Ishmael." He is writing a book about the atomic bomb that leads him to research on the late Dr Felix Hoenneker, a brilliant scientist who viewed science with pure curiosity. Never caring about the practical implications of his work, Hoenneker made no distinction between working on the atom bomb and investigating how turtles retract their heads.
Seeking to learn more about Hoenneker from his surviving children, Jonah follows them to the impoverished island nation of San Lorenzo, loosely based on Haiti. There he is introduced to Bokononism, the dominant religion of the island which, among its many unusual features, openly proclaims that it is a fraud. A good part of this rather short novel is a detailed discussion of Bokononism, which is one of Vonnegut's most memorable creations.
While on the island, Jonah also learns more about ice 9, the final project that Hoenneker worked on. Ice 9 is ice with an entirely different crystalline structure from regular ice, which has the trait of freezing at normal temperatures. Thus, if you mixed ice 9 with any body of water, it would promptly freeze. Jonah soon finds reasons to doubt his assumption that ice 9 could not really exist.
Jonah's adventures come to a grim if strangely appropriate finale - I don't think Vonnegut has ever written a novel with a happy ending. The moral of the story is, it seems, that life is entirely without meaning or purpose. And yet, the humor and vitality of the novel give it an energy and even joy strangely at contrast with its depressing message.
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CAT'S CRADLE
CAT'S CRADLE by Kurt Vonnegut (Mass Market Paperback - Dec 15 1969)
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