For the longest time I somehow merged Richard Brautigan and Kurt Vonnegut into one person. Even after reading „Slaughterhouse Five“ I could never really make two different people out of them in my mind. They were somehow located in the somehow 1960s department of may brain that also occupied Grateful Dead, Frank Zappa, Betty Friedan and other mysterious people I only know by name.
The only thing that finally managed to successfully seperate them, was finally also reading a book by Richard Brautigan.
And boy was a in for a ride. This certainly was one of the weirdest books I read this year.
„In Watermelon Sugar“ is an American post-apocalyptic novel by Richard Brautigan written in 1964. It is set in the aftermath of a fallen civilization and is about a commune that is organised around a central meeting house called „iDEATH“. In this world a lof things are made of watermelon sugar and the landscape is constantely in flux. Each day has a different colored sun which in turn created different colored watermelons.
The narrator writes a book about his experiences at iDEATH
It is said that in this book, Richard Brautigan discovers and expresses the mood of the counterculture generation.
I am sure that the experience of the book is greatly enhanced by the consumption of some mind-expanding drugs which were certainly used when writing the book 😉
This story seems to explode off the page and when I closed this small book I was pretty shaken and was not quite sure what the hell I had just experienced.
Do you know Richard Brautigan? Which books of his would you recommend?
Check out Kurt Vonnegut’s brilliant „Slaughterhouse 5“ if only to make sure they really are two different people.