Cat’s Cradle is another example of Vonnegut’s mastery of using satire and dark humor to get the reader to take a closer look at themselves and the world around them. The characters and the protagonist in many of Vonnegut’s books are not your typical run of the mill characters, yet you can always relate to them and Cat’s Cradle is no exception.
The heart of the story takes place on the island of San Lorenzo. The main character John, a writer, finds himself on the island along with the rest of the characters – a dictator, an ambassador, the three (adult) children of a scientist that invented a doomsday device, an old religious leader/outlaw and a few other characters. But the real star of the book, for me anyways, was the religion that Vonnegut invented call Bokononism. The first page of the Bokononist book warns reader to not read the book because it is full of lies. The motto of the Bokononist’s religion is “Live by the foma (harmless untruths) that make you brave and kind and healthy and happy.”
Cat’s Cradle takes a look at science, religion, technology and human nature in classic Vonnegut form. In my opinion, reading Vonnegut can lead one to a higher level of enlightenment quicker than any so called spiritual or religious book ever could. I have read several books by Vonnegut and even though I didn’t love them all, all of them has given me something to think about.
I highly recommend Cat’s Cradle to everyone. The truth be told I recommend reading all of Vonnegut’s books to everyone.