The Sirens of Titan is an outrageous romp through space, time, and morality. The richest, most depraved man on Earth, Malachi Constant, is offered a chance to take a space journey to distant worlds with a beautiful woman at his side. Of course there's a catch to the invitation and a prophetic vision about the purpose of human life that only Vonnegut has the courage to tell.
As an added bonus, when you purchase our Audible Modern Vanguard production of Kurt Vonnegut's book, you'll also receive an exclusive Jim Atlas interview. This interview – where James Atlas interviews Gay Talese about the life and work of Kurt Vonnegut – begins as soon as the audiobook ends.
This production is part of our Audible Modern Vanguard line, a collection of important works from groundbreaking authors.
©1959 Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. (P)2008 Audible, Inc.
“Vonnegut is George Orwell, Dr. Caligari and Flash Gordon compounded into one writer . . . a zany but moral mad scientist.” (Time)
“His best book . . . He dares not only ask the ultimate question about the meaning of life, but to answer it.” (Esquire)
“Reading Vonnegut is addictive!” (Commonweal)
Don't know if everyone will love Vonnegut's writing as much as I do. He has a style that I just love. He does have a style very much like Douglas Adams ( or should I say Douglas Adams has Vonnegut's style -- cause Vonnegut was first). He has great explanations for the most ridiculous things. Absurd!!
some good moments but not vonnegut's finest hour. the story wraps around a few points he's trying to make, but it feels a bit contrived, and this coming from someone that calls vonnegut his favorite author.
People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.
Ahead of its time in 1959, Kurt Vonnegut's second novel is a timebender and a mindbender that remains a timeless classic of mindless manipulation. Shockingly relevant even today, The Sirens of Titan imagines, some time between the second world war and third great depression, a billionaire who recruits the disenfranchised masses and brainwashes them into launching an invasion against the world as we know it. Yikes!
Class warfare was one of Vonnegut's recurring themes -- powerful, durable, influential. That it spoke to the 1960s counterculture is well documented. That it still rings true speaks to how futile it may be to ever expect this clash to ever end. From the more specific perspective of recommending a novel that is more than half a century old, The Sirens of Titan is unstuck in time, an enduring masterwork of social commentary masked as pulp sci-fi.
You'll find other familiar Vonnegut memes here that made their way into his more widely read novels. A cult religion, as in Cat's Cradle, crazy rich people as in Mr. Rosewater, the question of free will as in Breakfast of Champions, a time warp as in Slaughterhouse-Five, and the planet Tralfamadore, which appears in several other works, most prominently in S-5. And if you're a fan of The Hitchhiker's Guide, you'll find many of Douglas Adams's influences here.
What ultimately makes it work, in my opinion (by contrast, for example, to the tiresome dated Breakfast of Champions), is that Vonnegut wrote this as a straightforward science fiction story in the pulp style of the 1950s. It has well-articulated characters and a straight-ahead narrative about space travel, time travel, interplanetary wars, etc., into which the author can plant all of his iconoclastic ideas.
I hadn't read this since I was a teenager in the early 70s, an era when Vonnegut's books, especially this one, shaped the ideology adopted by me and all my friends. I am happy to have rediscovered it in audio format, and to be reminded how prescient Kurt Vonnegut was.
I'm not sure this reader actually read the book or understands the tone of Vonnegut. He sure did read the words, but he might as well have been reading the ingredients off a cereal box, dull, dull, dull, dull, dull, ironically he is such a terrible narrator he sounds like someone Vonnegut would have written into a story as an example of irony.
Plot - Characters - Narration fit together for a five star experience. Having enjoyed the audio book I may now go old school and read the words. Another avenue to absorb. Thank You Mr Kurt.
love it! Chronosynclastic infindibulum fantastic~ I have always tried reading the book but failed to finish. Now I'm ready to relisten with the book itself. Love Vonnegut :) Such a good read. Reminds me how fragile and precious life is!
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