eBook - 1997
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Penguin Putnam
There's been a timequake. And everyone?even you?must live the decade between February 17, 1991 and February 17, 2001 over again. The trick is that we all have to do exactly the same things as we did the first time?minute by minute, hour by hour, year by year, betting on the wrong horse again, marrying the wrong person again. Why? You'll have to ask the old science fiction writer, Kilgore Trout. This was all his idea.

Rosetta Books

Timequake (1997) exists in two conjoined versions (“Timequake One”/”Timequake Two”) and in meta-fictional mode is a novel about a novel, composed in short, arbitrary chapters and using its large cast of characters and disoriented chronology to mimic the “timequake” which is its subject. Some cosmic upheaval has hurled the entire population a decade back where, in full consciousness (but helplessly entrapped) everyone’s pitiable and embarrassing mistakes are helplessly enacted again.

By this stage of his life--he was 72 the year the novel was published--Vonnegut was still wearing his luminescent bells and Harlequin’s cape, but these had become dusty and the cape no longer fitted. Vonnegut’s exasperation and sense of futility could no longer be concealed or shaped, and this novel is a laboratory of technique (deliberately) gone wrong, a study of breakdown.

Vonnegut had never shown much hope in his work for human destiny or occupation; the naive optimism of Eliot Rosewater in God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater had in the damaged veteran Billy Pilgrim of Slaughterhouse-Five become a naive fantasy of escape to a sexual heaven. In the nihilism of Timequake, the only escape is re-enactment, but re-enactment has lost hope and force.

This is no Groundhog Day in which Vonnegut traps his various refugees (many escaped from his earlier works) but a hell of lost possibility. The temporal timequake of the title is the actual spiritual fracture of the 20th century, and in his 73rd year Vonnegut envisions no hope, not even the hollow diversions of Slapstick. Vonnegut’s imaginative journey, closely tracked by his work, is one of the most intriguing for any American writer of the twentieth century.

Baker & Taylor
After the universe decides to back up ten years and all humans must live through the 1990s again, author Kurt Vonnegut finds himself trying to write a book called Timequake, which he knows he will never finish since he already did not finish it

& Taylor

The author's first full-length novel in seven years, a hilarious moral satire features a science fiction writer, Kilgore Trout, who manages to turn time back a decade, insisting that everyone repeat it exactly the same way. Reprint.

Publisher: New York : G.P. Putnam's, c1997
ISBN: 9780795318658
Characteristics: 1 online resource

Related Resources


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

LPL_KateG May 25, 2018

"If this isn't nice, what is?" || K.V. was a true gem, and though this particular book often gets overlooked, I'd recommend taking a look. He's funny and vulnerable and smart as always.

Apr 26, 2016

I love love LOVE Vonnegut and this book, such an amazing read.

Oct 23, 2013

I love Vonnegut. This book is the most personal, touching, sincere of all his fiction work. Loved it :)

Sep 03, 2011

The numerous characters and uneven plot make for a difficult read, and somehow I feel it's underlying message is disguised as an autobiographical account of the author..perhaps I'm wrong

Jan 25, 2010

One crazy book full of strange ideas and great catch-phrases. Once you've read it, you won't be able to restrain yourself from walking around blurting out "Ting-a-ling!"


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at BPL

To Top