Tuesday, February 03, 2009
five minute book review: johnny got his gun, by dalton trumbo
I've got a more fleshed-out review of something else simmering on the back burner, but for today here's my lightening-quick response to Dalton Trumbo's Johnny Got His Gun, which is currently up for discussion amongst my book club peeps:

Johnny Got His Gun is perhaps the single most psychologically disturbing thing I've ever read.  A stream of consciousness narrative of a WWI soldier who has (perhaps unrealistically) survived a shell at the expense of all of his limbs and most of his senses, Trumbo's classic novel remains one of the most effective anti-war pieces of our modern era.   It's a lightening-quick read, but one that leaves a lasting impression for its searing portrayal of the effects of modern warfare.  If you've never gotten around to it then you probably should at some point, however do brace yourself for some powerfully disturbing imagery.   I have finished it, consequently I need a hug.

(And after tackling this back-to-back with Say You're One of Them, trust that I'm now in the market for some significantly lighter fare.  Something with unicorns who poo rainbows, perhaps.)

Dalton Trumbo
1939, 256 pages

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