Author(s): Kurt Vonnegut
Pay attention please to the life of Walter F. Starbuck. Nineteen-hundred and Thirteen gave him the gift of life. Nineteenth-hundred and Thirty-one sent him to Harvard. Nineteen-hundred and Thirty-eight got him a job in the federal government. Nineteen-hundred and Seventy gave him a job in the Nixon White House. Nineteen-hundred and Seventy-five sent him to prison for his part in the American political scandals known collectively as 'Watergate'. Now Walter F. Starbuck is coming out of jail, into the brave new world of 1980s Manhattan, and this is the story of his first twenty-four hours of freedom.
"As provoking, as amusing and as silver-tongued as anything Vonnegut has written" New Statesman "Jailbird has the crackle and snap of Vonnegut's early work - his best since Cat's Cradle. Using the laid-back, ironic voice that has become his stademark, Vonnegut combines fiction and fact to construct an ingenious, wry morality play" Newsweek "An overtly political novel attacking McCarthyism and Watergate" Daily Telegraph "After Vonnegut, everything else seems a bit tame" Spectator
Kurt Vonnegut was born in Indianapolis in 1922 and studied biochemistry at Cornell University. During WWII, as a prisoner of war in Germany, he witnessed the destruction of Dresden by Allied bombers, an experience which inspired Slaughterhouse Five. Vonnegut's black humor, satiric voice, and incomparable imagination first captured America's attention in The Sirens of Titan in 1959 and according to Harper's Magazine, established him as 'a true artist' with Cat's Cradle in 1963. He was, as Graham Greene declared, 'one of the best living American writers'. Vonnegut died in April 2007.