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Lathe of Heaven (Sf Masterworks 44) by…

Lathe of Heaven (Sf Masterworks 44) (original 1971; edition 2001)

by Ursula K Le Guin

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3,479731,526 (3.99)2 / 185
Title:Lathe of Heaven (Sf Masterworks 44)
Authors:Ursula K Le Guin
Info:Millennium Paperbacks (2001), Paperback, 192 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:fiction, science fiction, dystopia

Work details

The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. Le Guin (1971)

  1. 20
    Amnesia Moon by Jonathan Lethem (ahstrick)
  2. 10
    The Dream Master by Roger Zelazny (paradoxosalpha)
    paradoxosalpha: Science fiction about the technological control of sleeping dreams. They're just dreams, right? What could go wrong?
  3. 00
    The Kin of Ata Are Waiting for You by Dorothy Bryant (sturlington)
    sturlington: Alternate realities accessed through dreams.
  4. 02
    The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff (The_Kat_Cache)
    The_Kat_Cache: The Lathe of Heaven is chock-full of Taoist principles. This book elaborates on the philosophy in an easily accessible manner.
  5. 13
    Lord of Light by Roger Zelazny (storyjunkie)
    storyjunkie: Both books carry a philosophical weight to their world-saving. A similar atmosphere to their protagonists, worlds, and occupancy of a more soul-searching lot in the science fiction spectrum make them nicely complementary to each other.

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English (70)  French (2)  German (1)  All languages (73)
Showing 1-5 of 70 (next | show all)
Long before Inception and “shared dreaming,” LeGuin produced this classic, philosophical, sci-fi novel of “effective dreaming” and the nature of reality. The simple concept of one man’s dreams grows roots and branches that entwine and entangle the reader in a forest of complex relationships that eventually force the reader to choose between wanting to change reality or accepting it and letting the “conscious mind be part of the whole, intentionally and carefully.” ( )
  drardavis | Jul 7, 2015 |
Entertaining enough, a quick diversion. ( )
  MaureenCean | May 10, 2015 |
Lathe of Heaven is a semi post-apocalyptic novel that centered on the figure George Orr, a man who realizes that his dreams have the power to shape reality (though rarely in the way intended-- as dreams will do). Terrified of the power of his dreams he is sent to a prominent psychiatrist who realizes that George is, in fact, sane, and that through hypnosis he (the doctor) can shape the world to his will. Fighting against both the terrifying ability to rewrite reality and his psychiatrist’s misguided attempts to ‘fix’ the world, George is stuck in a shifting web of parallel realities that he remembers, and growing dangers as his dreams often replace one danger with another. ( )
  Ailinel | May 1, 2015 |
Le Guin has an incredible imagination and she’s equally adept as a thoughtful futurist as she is an untethered fantasist. Written in 1971, Lathe of Heaven impressively projected the trends of the time into a turn-of-the-twenty-first century reality that foresaw the extremes of climate change and perpetual conflict among the major powers. The central story, however, is the role of dreams and the impact one individual’s subconscious can have on reality. Rather than one man’s dreams influencing reality through a retelling, Le Guin imagines the main character’s dreams changing reality and his therapist’s attempt to steer those dreams in order to create a more perfect world. In that quest for perfection, however, they learn that they can’t account for every flaw and in turn create an alternative string of disasters. Without imperfection, there is no balance in the world.

From my own first read and from other reviewers, I’m certain I’ll need to have a go at this book again sometime in the future. Lathe of Heaven is also the first of Le Guin I’ve ever read, so I have no other experience with her work, but I did enjoy this first look. ( )
  traumleben | Mar 22, 2015 |
What an interesting book. Written the year after I was born and envisaging what would have been future then but is past now. I'm glad that some of the things anticipated by the novel haven't come to pass, that our over consumption hasn't broken the earth as quickly as Ms. Le Guin thought probable. But her anticipation of war in Afghanistan in 2002 is uncanny, written 2 years before the coup and 8 years before the USSR invasion that set us on the path to real life 2001. But the book. The book is tense, human, beautiful, gripping, and scary. Part of me wishes I could dream a different reality, put things right, but a bigger part is glad that nobody has the power to dream new realities on a whim. It turns out messily in the book. ( )
  missizicks | Mar 14, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Le Guin, Ursula K.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sappinen, Jorma-VeikkoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Confucius and you are both dreams, and I who say you are dreams am in a dream myself. This is a paradox. Tomorrow a wise man may explain it; that tomorrow will not be for ten thousand generations. -- Chuang Tse: II
First words
Current-borne, wave-flung, tugged hugely by the whole might of ocean, the jellyfish drifts in the tidal abyss.
'Hello,' he said again.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (4)

Book description
The plot revolves around a character whose dreams alter reality.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0060512741, Paperback)

Ursula K. Le Guin is one of science fiction's greatest writers. She is also an acclaimed author of powerful and perceptive nonfiction, fantasy, and literary fiction. She has received many honors, including six Nebula and five Hugo Awards, the National Book Award, the Pushcart Prize, the Newbery, the Pilgrim, the Tiptree, and citations by the American Library Association. She has written over a dozen highly regarded novels and story collections. Her SF masterworks are The Left Hand of Darkness (1969), The Dispossessed (1974), and The Lathe of Heaven (1971).

George Orr has dreams that come true--dreams that change reality. He dreams that the aunt who is sexually harassing him is killed in a car crash, and wakes to find that she died in a wreck six weeks ago, in another part of the country. But a far darker dream drives George into the care of a psychotherapist--a dream researcher who doesn't share George's ambivalence about altering reality.

The Lathe of Heaven is set in the sort of worlds that one would associate with Philip K. Dick, but Ms. Le Guin's treatment of the material, her plot and characterization and concerns, are more akin to the humanistic, ethically engaged, psychologically nuanced fiction of Theodore Sturgeon. The Lathe of Heaven is an insightful and chilling examination of total power, of war and injustice and other age-old problems, of changing the world, of playing God. --Cynthia Ward

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:33 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

"In a future world racked by violence and environmental catastrophes, George Orr wakes up one day to discover that his dreams have the ability to alter reality. He seeks help from Dr. William Haber, a psychiatrist who immediately grasps the power George wields. Soon George must preserve reality itself as Dr. Haber becomes adept at manipulating George's dreams for his own purposes."--Publisher description.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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