Look at the Birdie is a collection of fourteen previously unpublished short stories from one of the most original writers in all of American fiction. In this series of perfectly rendered vignettes, written just as he was starting to find his comic voice, Kurt Vonnegut paints a warm, wise, and often funny portrait of life in post—World War II America–a world where squabbling couples, high school geniuses, misfit office workers, and small-town lotharios struggle to adapt to changing technology, moral ambiguity, and unprecedented affluence.
In “Confido,” a laboratory assistant’s magical invention promises to put his family on easy street at last. But is a machine that gives voice to our innermost thoughts and unspoken grievances really the key to happiness–or a direct line to despair?
“Confido” and the thirteen other never-before-published pieces that comprise Look at the Birdie serve as an unexpected gift for devoted readers who thought that Kurt Vonnegut’s unique voice had been stilled forever–and provide a terrific introduction to his short fiction for anyone who has yet to experience his genius.
Kurt Vonnegut was a master of contemporary American literature. His black humor, satiric voice, and incomparable imagination first captured America’s attention in The Sirens of Titan in 1959 and established him, in the words of The New York Times, as “a true artist” with the publication of Cat’s Cradle in 1963. He was, as Graham Greene declared, “one of the best living American writers.” Mr. Vonnegut passed away in April 2007.