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Do androids dream of electric sheep? (original 1968; edition 1997)

by Philip K. Dick

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11,293277247 (3.97)2 / 440
Member:AlanPoulter
Title:Do androids dream of electric sheep?
Authors:Philip K. Dick
Info:London : HarperCollins 1997, c1968.
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:science fiction

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Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick (1968)

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English (260)  French (5)  Spanish (4)  Italian (2)  Polish (1)  Swedish (1)  Dutch (1)  Romanian (1)  Portuguese (1)  All languages (276)
Showing 1-5 of 260 (next | show all)
The short answer to the book title is sure why not. They dont think about or care about living things, but they are intelligent enough to understand social status. Do humans dream of electric sheep? only when they cannot have a live one, or perhaps if elect6ric is what you have you learn to love.

This was a relatively quick novel, with a lot of ideas that bounced off me...not sure if they sunk in all that well. But i enjoyed the story. I just wished the retiring of the andys was a little more played out given how exhausted Deckard was after the day. It didnt seem like 6 Nexus-6 units in a day was all that hard for him, despite the record. ( )
  T4NK | Sep 30, 2014 |
READ IN ENGLISH

Do Androids dream of electric sheep is a Scifi classic, it's also made into a movie called Blade Runner (You have a name like Do Androids dream of electric sheep? and then you choose as a title for you movie: Blade Runner. Why?). In my opinion though, there are quite some differences between the book and the movie, both of which are definitely worth a try.



In a destroyed world where most people have left the earth to live on colonies like Mars, our main character is a bounty hunter who kills escaped Androids. These androids pretend to be humans, so the only way for him to decide whether or not someone is an android is by testing their empathy, as androids are said to be unable to feel empathy. This makes him wonder about his own empathic skills, while also worrying about his new electric goat. He had a live one, very expensive, but it died and as he couldn't afford a new one, he replaced the goat with an electric animal, hoping no one would notice.



It's definitely a memorable book, I especially like the first half of it. It was very original, something I had already expected with such a lovely title as Do androids dream of electric sheep? At first it may seem just a story, but there is more to it. It handles questions about the value of life to name something. A very interesting read. ( )
  Floratina | Sep 25, 2014 |
I have never understood why science fiction writing is seen as a poor relation to general fiction. This book asks searching questions about our attitudes to other races, religion and consumerism - all within 193 pages: oh, and it tells an exciting story at the same time. How can this be a lesser art form?

If you have seen the film, Bladerunner, but never read this book, then I strongly advise you so to do. This is the basis of that film and, whilst the cinematic experience is most enjoyable, and I can quite understand why changes had to be made, the book is a far deeper experience.

Rick Deckard is a bounty hunter whose job it is to 'retire' renegade androids. The term retiring, is not mine, but Dick's. It reflects a human trait: we do not talk of murdering people of different religions, &c., we use these euphemisms, to justify the unjustifiable. The androids great sin appears to be wanting to lead their own life and Deckard is tasked with retiring six of the latest Nexus-6 model. He also hankers for a real animal, something of a status symbol in a post apocalyptic war ravaged period. He is the possessor of an electric sheep, but android animals are not nearly so prized. The bounty from his six kills will enable him to purchase a real goat.

Along the way, Deckard meets Mercer, the electronic based God and his, and our, views upon religion are tested. As this is a book written for sentient humans, we are not given a simple, 'Religion is true' or 'Religion is false', instead, Dick enables us to look at the question from both sides.

If you haven't read this, BUY A COPY TODAY!!!!!!! ( )
  the.ken.petersen | Sep 19, 2014 |
The Basics

Rick Deckard is a bounty hunter, specifically in regards to androids. When an android goes rouge, it usually means they had to kill someone to do it, and it’s Rick’s job to determine if the person he’s investigating is definitely an android and then dispatch them. But what happens when Rick starts to question not only the humanity of what he’s doing but the human or inhuman status of the people around him?

My Thoughts

This book is a masterstroke on the part of Philip K. Dick. It would be easy to say that the popularity of this story has more to do with Blade Runner and Ridley Scott, and I imagine that has contributed, but I can also say that out of the books I’ve read so far, this is one of PKD’s best. It has all the ingredients that most of his books contain. It asks the questions he was most inspired to ask. Such as what is the measure of a human or non-human? How can we trust what we see around us when reality is so malleable and impossible to quantify? When emotion and religion are as easy to get as the push of a button, how can we trust feelings or revelations? But it does all this with the most grace I’ve seen so far from him.

This is a tightly woven story, surprising from PKD when he’s so fond of rabbit trails. The characters, particularly Deckard, John Isidore, and Rachel, are given depth and realism in a small space. It bends and twists while still managing to stay grounded enough that I’d say newcomers should actually start with this book. This is a fantastic gateway to PKD’s work.

Like any science fiction story worth its salt, it doesn’t necessarily answer the questions it puts forth. This universe does have rules, such as androids don’t have empathy, but it also breaks those rules in spots, giving it a balanced feeling. You could argue yourself in circles trying to determine if the “androids don’t have empathy” rule is a crock or not. Everyone who reads this will walk away with their own biases that are more a reflection of themselves than of PKD’s mind or opinions, and that is what makes this book so successful. It’s a classic in the genre for a reason.

Final Rating

5/5 ( )
  Nickidemus | Sep 18, 2014 |
I was quite let down by the book after hearing so much hype about it.

I was in AWE of the concept though! Owning a real animal being a TRUE sign of human compassion, and THAT'S how you can tell a human from an android? Or, at least, it'll help keep you from appearing suspicious. What a brilliant idea!

Delivery of the story though I thought was meh. ( )
  Czarmoriarty | Sep 14, 2014 |
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» Add other authors (62 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Dick, Philip K.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brick, ScottNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dougoud, JacquelineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Duranti, RiccardoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Goodfellow, PeterCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Michniewicz, SueCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moore, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Struzen, DrewCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wölfl, NorbertTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zelazny, RogerIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
And still I dream he treads the lawn,
walking ghostly in the dew,
pierced by my glad singing through.
~ Yeats
Dedication
To Tim and Serena Powers, my dearest friends
To Maren Augusta Bergrud
August 10, 1923 - June 14, 1967
First words
A merry little surge of electricity piped by automatic alarm from the mood organ beside his bed awakened Rick Deckard.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345404475, Paperback)

"The most consistently brilliant science fiction writer in the world."
--John Brunner

THE INSPIRATION FOR BLADERUNNER. . .

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was published in 1968. Grim and foreboding, even today it is a masterpiece ahead of its time.

By 2021, the World War had killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remained coveted any living creature, and for people who couldn't afford one, companies built incredibly realistic simulacrae: horses, birds, cats, sheep. . . They even built humans.

Emigrées to Mars received androids so sophisticated it was impossible to tell them from true men or women. Fearful of the havoc these artificial humans could wreak, the government banned them from Earth. But when androids didn't want to be identified, they just blended in.

Rick Deckard was an officially sanctioned bounty hunter whose job was to find rogue androids, and to retire them. But cornered, androids tended to fight back, with deadly results.

"[Dick] sees all the sparkling and terrifying possibilities. . . that other authors shy away from."
--Paul Williams, Rolling Stone

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:04:48 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

THE INSPIRATION FOR BLADERUNNER. . . Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was published in 1968. Grim and foreboding, even today it is a masterpiece ahead of its time. By 2021, the World War had killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remained coveted any living creature, and for people who couldn't afford one, companies built incredibly realistic simulacrae: horses, birds, cats, sheep. . . They even built humans. Emigrees to Mars received androids so sophisticated it was impossible to tell them from true men or women. Fearful of the havoc these artificial humans could wreak, the government banned them from Earth. But when androids didn't want to be identified, they just blended in. Rick Deckard was an officially sanctioned bounty hunter whose job was to find rogue androids, and to retire them. But cornered, androids tended to fight back, with deadly results.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 14 descriptions

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