Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Galapagos: A Novel (Delta Fiction) by Kurt…

Galapagos: A Novel (Delta Fiction) (original 1985; edition 1999)

by Kurt Vonnegut

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5,66253753 (3.81)85
Title:Galapagos: A Novel (Delta Fiction)
Authors:Kurt Vonnegut
Info:Dial Press Trade Paperback (1999), Edition: Reissue, Paperback, 336 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

Galápagos by Kurt Vonnegut (1985)

Recently added byMommyweiss, Gaspar, thoughtbox, private library, rnbwpnt, HenryJOlsen, JamesPaul977, khudak99



Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 85 mentions

English (51)  Finnish (1)  All languages (52)
Showing 1-5 of 51 (next | show all)
I've kind of intentionally avoided Vonnegut since disliking the couple of books I read by him back in highschool. But, on the urging of many Vonnegut-fans, I agreed to read this one. Well, it was OK.
I might have really liked it if it had been about a fifth of the length it was. It really is a one-joke story, and it stretches out for far too long. It's also much too enamored with its own cleverness.
The concept is that it's narrated from the point of view of a ghost, a million years in the future. He reiterates, repeatedly, that the downfall of humanity was their big brains, and that now that the descendants of humanity have evolved into simple, seal-like creatures, there's no trouble.
And how did we get there? Well, back in the 80's (present, for this book) there was advertised a 'Nature Cruise of the Century' to the Galapagos Islands. It was supposed to be filled with all kinds of celebrities, but due to political and economic strife, most of the scheduled guests don't show up. The destined parents of future humanity are an odd, ragtag bunch... ( )
  AltheaAnn | Feb 9, 2016 |
This novel is written in the year 1, 001,986 by the ghost of Leon Trotsky Trout, son of Vonnegut’s fictional alter ego, Kilgore Trout. It looks back on the events of 1986 that completely changed the fate of the human race and blames our over-evolved big brains for most of our problems. In that year, a serious recession caused the collapse of most currencies and a highly contagious virus that caused all females to go sterile developed. The human species as we know it died out, and the only survivors were a handful of people who were stranded on Santa Rosalia, the northernmost island in the Galapagos Archipelago. Over the next million years humans evolved to make the most of their situation on the island, and the big brains that caused us so much trouble grew significantly smaller.

This is a strange novel, but I wouldn’t expect anything less from Vonnegut. I enjoyed the concept, the random facts about wildlife on the Galapagos Islands, and the dark humor. Each chapter was broken down into smaller sections, which made it an easy book to read. However, I didn’t love anything about the book, and was ready for it to end before it did. I’ve said before that I like Vonnegut’s nonfiction more than I like his fiction, and that opinion holds true here.
( )
  AmandaL. | Jan 16, 2016 |
Vonnegut kertoo ihmisen uuden evoluutiotarinan tulevaisuudessa kun pieni määrä ihmisiä haaksirikkoutuu Galapagossaarille miljoona vuotta nykyajasta eteenpäin.
Evoluution tuloksena on Toinen Jerusalem, jossa ihmisillä on evät ja on menetetty suurin ongelmien aiheuttaja: liian suuret aivot.
  trajala14 | Nov 27, 2015 |
Galapagos is a fun read, playful; for a book about the end of the world, it's certainly more humorous and light-hearted than most, except perhaps Good Omens. The narration is fun -- the narrator is pretty much a character, but also pretty much omniscient, so you get to know everything that's going, but with opinions into the bargain.

When I think about it, though, I can't find much substance in this. It's very repetitive, and if there's one single point that comes out of it strongly, it's that humans have big brains and we cause our own problems, and maybe it would be better if we evolved to have smaller brains and less able to cause trouble. Which... sure, fine, but ~250 pages of story all focused around that begins to lose its charm.

Still, that's what saves it -- the charm, and the fact that the narrative reveals facts haphazardly, so you have to hang on to almost the last page to piece together exactly what happened throughout the book. It is charming, like I said, and very readable, but... Shrug? ( )
  shanaqui | Nov 23, 2014 |
Excellent silly book. I like the way everything is pretty much right on the table from the beginning. ( )
  rockinghorsedreams | Nov 13, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 51 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (26 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kurt Vonnegutprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Marsh, JamesCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
In spite of everything, I still believe people are really good at heart.

Anne Frank (1929-1945)
In memory of Hillis L. Howie (1903-1982),
amateur naturalist -
A good man who
took me and my best friend Ben Hitz
and some other boys
out to the American Wild West
from Indianapolis, Indiana,
in the summer of 1938

Mr Howie introduced us to real Indians
and had us sleep out-of-doors every night
and bury our dung,
and taught us how to ride horses,
and told us the names of many plants and animals,
and what they needed to do
in order to stay alive
and reproduce themselves.

One night Mr Howie scared us half to death
on purpose,
screaming like a wildcat near our camp.
A real wildcat screamed back.
First words
The thing was:
One million years ago, back in A.D. 1986, Guayaquil was the chief seaport of the little South American democracy of Ecuador, whose capital was Quito, high in the Andes Mountains.
Mary had also taught that the human brain was the most admirable survival device yet produced by evolution. But now her own big brain was urging her to take the polyethylene garment bag from around a red evening dress in her closet in Guayaquil, and to wrap it around her head, thus depriving her cells of oxygen.
"I'll tell you what the human soul is, Mary," he whispered, his eyes closed. "Animals don't have one. It's the part of you that knows when your brain isn't working right. I always knew, Mary. There wasn't anything I could do about it, but I always knew."
As for the meaning of the courtship dance of the blue-footed boobies: The birds are huge molecules with bright blue feet and have no choice in the matter. By their very nature, they have to dance exactly like that.
Human beings used to be molecules which could do many, many different sorts of dances, or decline to dance at all - as they pleased. My mother could do the waltz, the tango, the rumba, the Charleston, the Lindy Hop, the jitterbug, the Watusi, and the twist. Father refused to do any dances, as was his privilege.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
ISBN 0385333870 is for Galápagos by Kurt Vonnegut
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language
Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385333870, Paperback)

Galápagos takes the reader back one million years, to A.D. 1986. A simple vacation cruise suddenly becomes an evolutionary journey. Thanks to an apocalypse, a small group of survivors stranded on the Galápagos Islands are about to become the progenitors of a brave, new, and totally different human race. In this inimitable novel, America’s master satirist looks at our world and shows us all that is sadly, madly awry–and all that is worth saving.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:37 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

A small group of apocalypse survivors stranded on the Galapagos Islands are about to become the progenitors of a brave new human race. Vonnegut is a post-modern Mark Train. ... Galapagos is a madcap genealogical adventure.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
4 avail.
176 wanted
5 pay2 pay

Popular covers


Average: (3.81)
0.5 4
1 14
1.5 5
2 65
2.5 28
3 304
3.5 104
4 507
4.5 58
5 304


2 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Store | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 105,975,124 books! | Top bar: Always visible