Vonnegut is the best example I've ever seen of a book as sculpture-in-progress, as a kite that is assembled in your brain and with the last full stop is completed, unfurled, and takes flight. To read an entire book is to build a structure as textured as the real world. And what stuns me is that throughout his earlier books, he tells you exactly how he's going to do it: the values, the style of writing, the characters. And in the later ones, does. And it's perfect.