Author: Kurt Vonnegut
Page Count: 272
The first thing that I noticed about this book was that it had a Graham Greene quote on the front cover, which I thought was funny because I picked it up after reading Greene’s The Honorary Council. It was a nice little piece of serendipity which set the tone for the rest of the read.
Galapagos is satire, which Vonnegut excelled at, but it also has its roots firmly grounded in our own reality. It does a good job of holding a mirror up to the reality that we’re familiar with, and that mirror might reveal more about us than it would seem going into it. As for the title, that’s all about the location, which is almost a character in and of itself.
The concept behind the book of the whole is a spin on the work of Charles Darwin, which is perhaps unsurprising considering that’s mostly what the Galapagos Islands are known for. That was a happy little piece of serendipity too, because I happen to have read On the Origin of Species. It definitely helped my enjoyment that I’d read the work that influenced it.
Still, it’s not the best of Vonnegut’s books, and it’s probably one that you’ll want to pick up after you’ve read a few of his others. And I’m saying that as someone who somehow still hasn’t read Slaughterhouse Five, although I’ve picked up a half dozen or so other Vonneguts. But it doesn’t really matter whether you’re a Vonnegut mega fan or whether you’re new to him. Enjoy.