War... War never changes... Its not my thought, but its still true. Best men, best minds, best resources are spent on military needs since the beginning of our history. Long, long ago we had only sticks and rocks and war was more of a game then. After a while we received sharpened pieces of metal at our disposal to hurt each other and war turned into kind of sport with no spectators. After a while more, we've learned how to hurt people without seeing their faces and war turned into DESTRUCTIVE CRAFT. During XXth century we've gone ANOTHER step forward in this self-destructive evolution: we've turned CRAFT into INDUSTRY. We've turned HUNTING into SLAUGHTER. The most frightening thing is that we're not finished yet.
Today I'm going to tell you about the best novel of argueably one of the best modern American authors - legendary Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse-Five, Or the Children's Crusade".
Main hero of this book is an ordinary man, named Billy Pilgrim. During the war he was just a young infantryman, who was unlucky enought to be captured during the Battle of the Bulge. He was then taken to Dresden as a war prisoner, and there he had witnessed and survived the Allied firebombing of Dresden. He had survived the war and lived his life until one day an aircraft accident got him "unstuck in time". Now he's again living though the most horrible moments of his life and is trying to "provide corrective lenses for Earthlings" to change the way they see their world.
This really realistic novell strips you from ANY romantic illusions you had about war and shows you the real face of this madness - not a pleasant picture, if you still haven't guessed. And Vonnegut surely knows what he's writing about - he fought in the US Army during WWII by himself and even witnessed the Dresden firebombing.
Another great feature of this book is Vonnegut's "Telegraphic Schizophrenic Manner" of writing. The book has no strict chronology and we are unstuck in time just as Billy Pilgram. One moment we are reading about a German POW camp, and next moment - about the strange philosophy of planet Tralfamadore. Feeling we get as a result of this time-ride is absolutely unbelievable - ya've got to live through that to understand what it is!
This book is certainly the most famous anti-war novel of the second half of the last century. And its certainly the most famous book by Kurt Vonnegut. And its certainly a book that turned me into Vonnegut's fan. And it's certainly a book everyone should read. Inclucing you. Read this book - you won't regret this. Certainly.