November 12, 2012

November 11th, 2012 would have been Kurt Vonnegut’s 90th birthday.

This past year saw the release of a number of Vonnegut biographies, criticisms, and posthumously released material, including Greg Sumner’s Unstuck in Time: A Journey Through Kurt Vonnegut’s Life and Novels (now available in paperback) which looks at Vonnegut’s life through the lens of his most famous works, as well as Charles Shield’s controversial biography, And So it Goes and Kurt Vonnegut: Letters, with 60 years of correspondence edited by Dan Wakefield, a long-time friend of Vonnegut’s.

The latest is We Are What We Pretend to Be: The First and Last Works, with two works of unreleased fiction: Basic Training, Vonnegut’s earliest unpublished novella, and If God Were Alive Today, the unfinished novel Vonnegut began before he died. It also features an introduction by Vonnegut’s daughter, Nanette Vonnegut. Check out this interview with Nanette at The Rumpus:

“She clearly loves her father and it was fun sharing my admiration for him with her. Yet the second my tone grew sticky with awe, hers turned cautious. He was real, she’d insist. A beautiful, complicated, human who was also an amazing writer.”

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