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If This Isn't Nice, What Is?: Advice for the Young | [Kurt Vonnegut]

If This Isn't Nice, What Is?: Advice for the Young

Master storyteller and satirist Kurt Vonnegut was one of the most in-demand commencement speakers of his time. For each occasion, Vonnegut’s words were unfailingly unique, insightful, and witty, and they stayed with audience members long after graduation. As edited by Dan Wakefield, this book reads like a narrative in the unique voice that made Vonnegut a hero to readers and listeners of all ages. At times hilarious, razor-sharp, freewheeling, and deeply serious, these reflections are ideal for anyone undergoing what Vonnegut would call their "long-delayed puberty ceremony".
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Audible Editor Reviews

This selection of commencement speeches from legendary author Kurt Vonnegut will prove a thoroughly comforting companion for recent graduates as they move out into the so-called real world and attempt to determine their own place within that often overwhelming realm.

Vonnegut's advice, dispensed at countless graduation ceremonies over the course of his life, is by turns moving and comical, indelibly stamped with his unique outlook on the world, and voice actors Kevin T. Collins and Scott Brick take great pains to capture his distinctive authorial tone in their performance. Vonnegut is sometimes sardonic, sometimes sarcastic, sometimes straightforward, but he is always empathetic, a fact well-reflected in Collins and Brick's thoughtful narration of this inspiring work.

Publisher's Summary

Master storyteller and satirist Kurt Vonnegut was one of the most in-demand commencement speakers of his time. For each occasion, Vonnegut’s words were unfailingly unique, insightful, and witty, and they stayed with audience members long after graduation.

As edited by Dan Wakefield, this book reads like a narrative in the unique voice that made Vonnegut a hero to readers and listeners of all ages. At times hilarious, razor-sharp, freewheeling, and deeply serious, these reflections are ideal for anyone undergoing what Vonnegut would call their "long-delayed puberty ceremony" - marking the passage from student to full-time adult.

This book makes the perfect gift for high school or college graduates - or for parents and grandparents who remember Vonnegut fondly and want to connect with him in a new context.

©2013 Kurt Vonnegut Jr. Copyright Trust (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (183 )
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4.3 (157 )
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Performance
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  •  
    nina førde, Norway 03-23-14
    nina førde, Norway 03-23-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "This IS nice"
    What did you love best about If This Isn't Nice, What Is??

    The man! I love his wisdom, his simple way of telling truths we all need to hear. He is funny, also when he talks about serious topics


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Vonnegut himself


    What did you learn from If This Isn't Nice, What Is? that you would use in your daily life?

    I wrote a blog post after listening to it, about following your dreams. I felt inspired to talk about my knowledge in psychology, and thought I must learn to say important things like he does. I will listen to it again, to use some of the questions he asks, with clients


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Danielle 05-05-15
    Danielle 05-05-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Inspirational!"

    As always, the words of Kurt Vonnegut provide inspiration, wisdom and humour. I've listened to this audiobook several times over, and I'm sure I'll listen to it several times more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JimG 05-04-15
    JimG 05-04-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Scott Brick is almost tolerable at 1.5 speed"

    Tip: Set the narration speed at 1.5 or faster if you are nauseated by the droning of scott prick

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    TheDoc 04-28-15
    TheDoc 04-28-15
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    "Horrible"

    I have toughed out some bad audio books, but this was so bad, in content and performance, that I was forced to fast forward through most of them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    dug 04-22-15
    dug 04-22-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Inspiration... Vonnegut Style"

    A series of graduation speeches that Vonnegut gave that could inspire anyone. And read by one of the few men to be able to convey his satirical message in the same way he would.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    N Marlene Fleming 04-20-15 Member Since 2006
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    "Essential Vonnegut!"

    How wonderful to hear his words again. So happy my grandchildren will be able to get to hear his advice! Loved listening to this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Platitudinus Fairfax, VA United States 01-12-15
    Platitudinus Fairfax, VA United States 01-12-15 Member Since 2013

    Platitudinus

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    "An Eternal Blessing From A Non-Believer"

    Fine narration of various speeches given at college graduations by humanist sci-fi/fantasy writer Kurt Vonnegut. Listen to this brave heart of a man, an atheist, who's hero is Jesus Christ. On dark and hopeless days give this a listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    George 03-04-14
    George 03-04-14
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    "Why?"

    This is a collection of graduation speeches given by a member of the greatest generation to the baby boom generation. While I never saw one of his speeches, I now understand why he was so popular among our generation....he was a rebel and a bit of a satirist. The latter makes him a fun read/listen. For example, Vonnegut derides semicolons as an indicator of a college education. Have I used a semicolon in this review?

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    India Kingsland, GA, United States 02-26-15
    India Kingsland, GA, United States 02-26-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Vonnegut at his best"

    Everyone should read this book--or listen to the audiobook. It might be a compilation of graduation speeches, but his sage advice applies to all ages. How often do we look bleakly at the world? Vonnegut offers honest wisdom with a firm grasp on reality. If we all took a moment to appreciate the nice things in life when they happen I think we would just be a happier species in general.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    perspective 01-19-15
    perspective 01-19-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Interesting"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    This was an interesting set of graduation speeches. The introduction about Vonnegut was a lot more engaging. The speeches become a little repetitive in theme and message.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Kurt Vonnegut? Why or why not?

    Actually, this did make me want to read Kurt Vonnegut, only because I am curious as to what the fuss is all about. I am currently reading 'Slaughter House 5', his most famous novella.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    The performance was fine, not outstanding but it was easy to listen to!


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    An interesting set of speeches that were engaging enough to make me want to read one of his books.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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