Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Curl up with a good book!

It is chilly and raining here. ALL DAY. As I look out my window I see people huddled against each other, walking through downtown Asheville, fighting with their umbrellas, and I shudder.

But, do not despair my good readers. Today is the day I venture back into Kurt Vonnegut's strange and deliriously glorious stories as I hold in my hand his novel- Bluebeard. In it, Vonnegut tells the tale of fictional Abstract Expressionist painter Rabo Karabekian who first appeared in Vonnegut's Breakfast of Champions, which also happens to be the last book I read of his.

Vonnegut's book takes it's name from Charles Perrault's Bluebeard, published in 1697. Perrault is the French author whose work led to the 'fairy tale' genre. Although the Brothers Grimm (or Disney) often get much of the credit from us today for those classic fairy tales, Perrault wrote earlier versions of the fairy tales we all love and cherish like Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Puss in Boots.... And, of course, Perrault himself was 'inspired' by earlier folk tales.

Knowing all of this, imagine what Vonnegut can do with a story he wrote that was inspired, although very roughly, by Perrault, the man of 'fairy tales'.

Just listen to Rabo Karabekian, as he says in the beginning of the book: "I promised you an autobiography, but something went wrong in the kitchen..."

I can't help but be excited for the chilly, rainy weather so I can curl up with this fun read.

Join the Asheville Art Museum's book group Discussion Bound as they discuss this farcical delight! Kurt Vonnegut at his finest. November 10th from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. Free with Membership or Museum Admission.

You can read Perrault's Bluebeard story here. Try to find his moral in Vonnegut's book?!

And if you need to know more about Vonnegut himself: The official site.


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