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The Sirens of Titan Audiobook

The Sirens of Titan

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Publisher's Summary

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.

What the Critics Say

“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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (1438 )
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4.2 (1144 )
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4.4 (1138 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Diana S. Long 10-12-17 Member Since 2014
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    11
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    "Creative and alarming"

    This was certainly a bizarre story, mind control by means of brain implants, trips to Mars and other planets. The protagonist of the work is put into difficult situations with the loss of free will and ends up doing things that having he been in control of his own faculties the outcome would be different. I thought it was well written, somewhat alarming and creative.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    thomas dye 10-07-17
    thomas dye 10-07-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Classic Vonnegut"

    This is classic Kurt Vonnegut.
    While Kurt Vonnegut is frequently clever, and injects an element of humor into much of his work, there is a certain. . . . Strong undertone of social commentary built into much of his works. Don't go in thinking that this is a grand adventure, or a master of overall storytelling. It's not.
    It is thought-provoking, even though dated by some 50 years now. I read this is a requirement in high school, I didn't care for it. Being older and more studied it was much better this time around.
    This is not where I would recommend you begin your literary journey, but rather a nice visit with an old friend.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    chad 10-04-17
    chad 10-04-17 Member Since 2012
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    "weird"

    hard to follow. no clue what was going on. don't know what those nerds at the end were talking about because this dude is a weirdo.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joe Kraus Kingston, PA, United States 10-04-17
    Joe Kraus Kingston, PA, United States 10-04-17 Member Since 2011
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    "A Powerful Sign of Vonnegut to Come"

    I had a Vonnegut phase in high school and into my early college years, and I remain grateful to him for showing me that literature can make you think even as it makes you laugh. I loved him for four or five years, then I felt I’d outgrown him. It’s only in the last four or five years (leaving a good 25 in between) that I’ve come back to him in a more measured way.

    I think the best Vonnegut really is as good as his partisans say, as good as I thought it was when I first encountered it in the Reagan years. God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater, Slaughterhouse Five, and, of course, Cat’s Cradle are all substantial works that hold up. They take elements of science fiction, combine them with a cynicism that can only be the product of an even deeper idealism, and give us some of the most memorable critiques of American life from the last 50 years.

    Sirens of Titan isn’t quite up to that level. It’s Vonnegut feeling his way toward his more successful work. He senses there’s an intellectual freedom in a science fiction mode, but he gets mildly trapped in it here. The idea, for instance, of Rumfoord as a cosmic intelligence capable of seeing past and future is an intriguing spin on the idea of a god, but it also becomes a bit self-defeating. Rumfoord moves the events of Constant’s life forward, but it isn’t clear why. He seems to want to teach humanity a lesson – and Constant’s conclusion that our purpose is to love another isn’t a bad distillation, even if it sounds trite in my paraphrase. In the end, though, he himself is confused and moving on. It’s solid and intriguing, moving in some ways, but it also implies an anxiety from the still-learning Vonnegut.

    Much of what is striking in the novel gets refined in later ones. We have, for instance, the rudiments of a religion that comes across more impressively in Cat’s Cradle. We also have a riff on the use of impediments to arrive at true equality; an idea he does a lot more with in “Harrison Bergeron” and that feels tacked on here. And we have disaffected rich men, unsure how to account for their great fortune, who get crystallized in Eliot Rosewater.

    The one great contribution here, I think, is the Tralfamadorans. Yes, they come back in Slaughterhouse Five, but they’re here in fully realized form. It’s a brilliant idea: life forms so different from ours who direct humans toward great accomplishments that serve as trivial ‘text messages’ from across the universe. What is the Great Wall of China but, in effect, a post it note from the inter-stellar UPS driver saying he’ll be back soon with the package.

    Definitely read this one. It’s not a bad place to start with Vonnegut if you know you’ll go on, and it’s a great way to echo the pleasures of the more mature novels if you’ve read them. Either way, commit to reading other Vonnegut as well. As striking as this is, it’s only a glimpse at what was to come.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A's Mom Sparks, NV 09-28-17
    A's Mom Sparks, NV 09-28-17 Member Since 2012
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    "Philosophy at it's finest"

    A compelling story that examines luck, fortune, misfortune, religion and life through a fantastical lens.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dan Vogel 09-23-17
    Dan Vogel 09-23-17 Member Since 2000
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "2nd time I read this much better than the first."
    If you could sum up The Sirens of Titan in three words, what would they be?

    Satirical, Truthiness, Funny


    What did you like best about this story?

    It has aged well. Nothing in it seems out of date.


    What about Jay Snyder’s performance did you like?

    Great voice


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Greg 09-21-17
    Greg 09-21-17 Member Since 2015
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    "Really?"

    Why did someone not warn me that this was a children? At least that is what I think of this book. Meaningless drivel. Pity I don't have Kurt's imagination and thus you can choose to ignore my review, but I would still rather do root canal treatment without Novocain.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Isabel 09-18-17
    Isabel 09-18-17
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    "I don't really know how to describe this book."

    You think the message is going to be disclosed through out the book but it does not. After sometime I found myself asking "why is it titled The Sirens of Titan?" it is a really good book shocked it was written in the late 1950s I can't really say much it's like I don't have the words other than that it's a must read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Bales 09-17-17
    John Bales 09-17-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Drawn out and tries to hard."
    Any additional comments?

    The intro is enticing and sets out he plot well. But the monotonous time on mars bored me so much I had to stop listening. There's no way I could take another hour of it before my brain imploded.

    I usually like the kind of Hitchhikers GTTG kind of humor it was going for, but the author just seem to be trying to hard.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ed 09-16-17
    Ed 09-16-17
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    "weird but fun"

    Vonnegut is weird, or was, anyhow. this is a compelling read anyway, weird even for sept 2017

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • I. A. Clark
    Whitby, N. Yorks, UK
    4/21/12
    Overall
    "Profoundly depressing"

    Inventive if improbable parable of meaninglessness and ridicule in riches, commerce and war. Anticipates Douglas Adams by 20 years, robbing him of any significant claim to originality. Has something Adams lacks: the bitter, casual cruelty of someone who has been betrayed in life. Winston Niles Rumfoord's wilfully ill-conceived and ill-starred Martian invasion of Earth prefigures every Western war since the book was published. A compelling read, like licking a sore tooth.

    3 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Benjamin
    1/16/17
    Overall
    Performance
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    "Like Vonnegut but..."

    I regret getting the unabridged version...I think I appreciate his books in short copy. He's a writer who is so good at being succinct in a sentence but there's no need for certain offshoots of this story to be included.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Stuart
    St Albans, United Kingdom
    2/14/12
    Overall
    "Fantastic"

    I love Kurt Vonnegut and his books work really well for me on audio. This one is fantastic!

    0 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • NelsonG
    3/7/15
    Overall
    Performance
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    "Gave up in Chapter 9"
    What would have made The Sirens of Titan better?

    If it hadn't been written.


    What will your next listen be?

    NOT Kurt Vonnegut.


    What does Dennis Boutsikaris bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    He got me as far as chapter 9. Without him bringing some kind of life to the 'story' I would have given up much sooner.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Anger at having wasted so much time, forcing myself to listen to it.


    Any additional comments?

    I picked this book out at random from a SciFi list. I'll do some research in the future.

    0 of 13 people found this review helpful

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