Hello my little nerdites, this week, I thought I would submit to you a quick piece on how good “Mother Night” is and how you should definitely read Vonnegut, if you haven’t already. Not only is Vonnegut a master of everything from science fiction to satire, he is also so profound it gives me chills.
“Mother Night” is a tale of spies, intrigue, and morality. Or the lack thereof. The story tells of the life of Howard Campbell Jr, and American with more loyalties than a politician. Campbell is an American in Germany at the time of Hitler’s rise to power. He is married to a German, his relationship with the Nazi regime is excellent, and he agrees to spy for them and to become a radio personality for the regime. Increasingly disaffected, Campbell becomes a double agent, then perhaps a triple agent, sending coded messages to the Allies.
“Mother Night” is strife with character development, exciting scenes of both dialogue and otherwise, and a tale of good vs. evil, all wrapped in Vonnegut’s quick wit and sharp satire. I think what is most interesting regarding the novel is that Howard Campbell is the world’s most unreliable narrator. A man who works so well with words and at shaping the ideas and perspectives of others, it’s important to remember that, in this metafiction, it is Howard Campbell writing his own life’s story. We never know if anything was true, where his loyalties lie, etc.
Vonnegut is a well known author, but “Mother Night” rarely gets the attention it deserves. My suggestion, dear readers, is that you read this as soon as you get an opportunity (it’s rather short).
Mother Night by Kurt Vonnegut
Length: 282 Pages
Favorite quote: “We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.”
Best time and place to read it: In a dusty attic, under a single lightbulb, drinking slightly cold tea, while it’s raining. Or an Israeli Prison. But I doubt you can get to one.
Article Submitted by Abbi Echo