Kurt Vonnegut is one of those authors that I've continually missed over the years. For some reason, I never quite got around to reading Slaughterhouse-Five while in high school (or college), and I've missed his major novels as well. That said, one of the first science fiction stories that I ever read was 'Harrison Bergeron', which I also saw as a play when I was probably in Middle School - the Handicapper General. That story has stuck with me for years, and it's a brilliant piece of short fiction.
My latest column for Kirkus (which is still running with me at The Verge) focuses on Vonnegut's story, particularly how he pointed out some of the really ridiculous parts of modern life. I came across an interview where he said that he was the one person who benefitted from the Dresden bombings, a massive bombing campaign that utterly destroyed the city.