If you liked Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five, you'll love...

The Next Chapter listener Matthew Parker compares Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five to Michael Ondaatje's Running in the Family.
If you enjoyed the Kurt Vonnegut classic, Matt Parker believes Running in the Family is the Canadian equivalent. (Bantam Dell/Knopf Random Vintage Canada)

The novel Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut is a semi-autobiographical work of fiction that is as relevant today as it was back in 1969 when it was first published. The Next Chapter listener Matthew Parker weighs on why Michael Ondaatje's acclaimed novel Running in the Family is the perfect Canadian companion to the Vonnegut classic.

"There are people I know that have read In the Skin of a Lion by Ondaatje and you'll see why he's a great novel writer when you read that. But you should also read Running in the Family because it makes one think of Ondaatje as a poet as well. You really see the full spectrum of Ondaatje's experimentalism and his willingness to explore all kinds of styles.

"Both books challenge us in a playful and deeply moving way and make you think about the the nature of writing — about narration and about what storytelling can or maybe cannot accomplish. And that's what I love about both books."

Matthew Parker's comments have been edited for length and clarity.