God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater is a comic masterpice. Eliot Rosewater, drunk, volunteer fireman, and president of the fabulously rich Rosewater foundation, is about to attempt a noble experiment with human nature… with a little help from writer Kilgore Trout. The result is Vonnegut’s funniest satire, an etched-in-acid portrayal of the greed, hypocrisy, and follies of the flesh we are all heir to. (Synopsis from Goodreads)
I am a really big Vonnegut fan. Cat’s Cradle is one of my most favorite books of all time and I love his sense of dark humor. Regardless of my love for his other works, this was not on my list of the best works I’ve read.
While there were some brilliant parts scattered about throughout the book, there were also parts that really just sounded like a bunch of babble that seemed rather useless and annoying to get through. These sections were made more off putting by the mere size of the book. The book isn’t long (about 190 pages or so) so when these sections happened it felt like such a waste of the small amount of space he gave himself; space that could have gone toward an even more in depth examination of the issues he was addressing in the book.
Despite this, I still enjoyed the sections that didn’t ramble enough to enjoy the book well enough. It just wasn’t genius like his other works. I found myself giggling at his examination of the hypocrisy and greed that is so prevalent in the upper classes as well as the guilt that some claim to feel for their wealth. Rosewater, representing the person giving away his wealth to worthless causes while at the same time preaching the evils of money and his father claims that all those poor and destitute are there because they are put themselves with their lazy ways and stupidity.
Overall, the book was alright but not great. It had some pretty great parts that made me laugh in a “that’s totally true” way, but nothing more than that. I wouldn’t necessarily say that I don’t recommend it, but there are better books out there than this. Especially better Vonnegut books.