Read This Book

Read This Book: SLAUGHTERHOUSE-FIVE by Kurt Vonnegut

Welcome to Read This Book, the newsletter where I recommend a book you should add to your TBR, STAT! I stan variety in all things, and my book recommendations will be no exception. These must-read books will span genres and age groups. There will be new releases, oldie but goldies from the backlist, and the classics you may have missed in high school. Oh my! If you’re ready to diversify your books, then LEGGO!!

Happy Veterans Day to all of the people who have served in the military! Veterans Day always holds a special place in my heart as a former military brat. For 20 years, my dad served in the United States Marine Corps. Although Veterans Day is a celebratory holiday where we thank and honor those who have served, today’s book recommendation is a classic that reflects upon the darker side of military life. 

Slaughterhouse-Five Book Cover

Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut

Centering around the infamous firebombing of Dresden during the Second World War, Billy Pilgrim travels through time from prisoner of war to family man on a journey that reflects our own fractured lives as we search for meaning in what we are afraid to know. 

Slaughterhouse-Five is considered both an American classic selected by the Modern Library as one of the 100 best novels of all time and one of the greatest anti-war books. 

Have you ever read a book where you know it is trying to tell you something insightful and profound, but you’re just too dense or uninformed on the topic to pick up what that book is putting down? Well, that was me while reading Slaughterhouse-Five. Although I was often not fully understanding the story as a whole, I did enjoy the book. However, I would have benefited from reading this in school or with a book club. Discussing the story among other readers sounds like a better (and more enlightening) way of dissecting Slaughterhouse-Five then trying to find answers on my own with the help of Google.

Slaughterhouse-Five is one of those books that is hard to talk about because there are so many elements that come together within the story. There’s the science / speculative fiction element thanks to Billy traveling to different times in his life. There is the obvious war element since a major portion of the book takes place during the infamous bombing at Dresden of World War II. Of course, there is the satirical humor that really makes this book standout from other anti-war novels. Only Vonnegut, someone who has experienced war, can eloquently walk that fine line of highlighting the absurdity of war without dismissing its gravity. 

When you’re ready to pick up Slaughterhouse-Five, prepare yourself for an interesting read. But, don’t go at it alone. Find a reading buddy. Next time I decide to take Slaughterhouse-Five for a spin, I will do the same. 

Until next time bookish friends,


Find more of me on Book Riot

Find more books by subscribing to Book Riot Newsletters.