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

by Philip K. Dick

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12,191320207 (3.96)2 / 557
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

Work details

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

1960s (239)
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English (303)  French (5)  Spanish (4)  Italian (2)  Polish (1)  Swedish (1)  Dutch (1)  Romanian (1)  Portuguese (1)  All (319)
Showing 1-5 of 303 (next | show all)
"I'll dial for both of us," Rick said, and led her back into the bedroom. There, at her console, he dialed 594: pleased acknowledgment of husband's superior wisdom in all matters.

PKD always had a good sense of humour. Any time I'm getting squawked at by my ol lady, I just use that line of his. ( )
  satanburger | Jan 15, 2017 |
One of the most incredible books I've ever read, this complicated and mind-bending tale about who and is real seems to get better every time I read it because I notice something different or approach it from a different viewpoint. ( )
1 vote Arianwen16 | Jan 4, 2017 |
Interesting story. Explores what is humanity. ( )
  ACSchriber | Jan 3, 2017 |
Many readers may know this story better by its film name – Blade Runner. For readers who enjoy thought provoking, intellectual science fiction you can’t bypass the works of Philip K. Dick.

Rick Deckard is a bounty hunter in futuristic San Francisco. His job is to eliminate androids on earth. Androids were developed in order to be shipped off planet to colonies in the galaxy to act as servants for humans.

There are small bands of humans left on earth in various cities around the world. News is limited to reality based gossip columns that play on television and radio. Emotions and moods are set and reset on a machine in each home in order to offset depression caused by the nuclear winter which hangs over everything.

A new religion or ideological following has emerged called Mercerism. It is tied in with the mood machine and a worship of animals. Many animals are extinct and the prices to own them are very high making ownership of a real animal both valuable and status adding to one’s life. Deckard and his wife are owners of an electric sheep but have aspirations to own a real animal.

A fellow bounty hunter of Deckard’s has been injured on the job and so the hunt for several androids is turned over to Deckard. With the bounties he hopes to be able to purchase real livestock.
From there the story is about the hunt.

The writing is excellent. A very descriptive tale of how the world works, the value of people and human versus android interactions and the role of sentient beings in our lives. One of the strongest underlying themes is that of emotion.

If you have seen the film first, then expect some deviation and a different experience. This author has had many of his stories adapted from page to screen. Some license is always taken because of the intellectual nature of the writing and it is hard to put thoughts onto film.

The story itself is fairly short but it is well worth any amount you have to pay to access it. If you are a sci-fi fan you are probably familiar. If this is a genre you do not usually read from, please try this author. You will not be disappointed. ( )
  ozzie65 | Dec 29, 2016 |

As far as this book went, P.K. Dick takes some getting used to. Dropping a few scenes here and there, unusual dialogue and then just forgetting about main characters was a bit hard to take.

On the other hand the adventures of Rick Deckert, bounty hunter of androids during a near future time was interesting. Dick does great in describing this new Earth, with its predictions of massive fall-out, "chickenheads" (retarded people affected by radiation), and the androids.

The androids are near human and Rick has a device that can spot them. Rick also falls in love with an android which turns out to nearly be his undoing.

Religion:

Dick pokes at religion too, through the practice of "Mercerism" which a person may get some pathetic benefit from. As well, drugs are used to alter mood and you have your choice of mood when you wake up in the morning. His wife Iran sometimes prefers depressing moods, which drives Rick nuts. What started Mercerism and who he is was touched on, but to a slight degree.

Animals:

Most of the animals and bugs on Earth are dead, and the few there are cost a pretty penny. The poorer folk buy electric sheep and such. Better a fake animal than nothing at all. This could really have been delved into deeper but was not.

Themes: Many themes are started and then dropped. Rick for example falls for Racheal, an android built by a corporation. This is never satisfactory especially at the end, which you'll have to see for yourself when you read the book (no spoilers).

Bottom Line:

I will need to rewatch the Harrison Ford film to make a final judgment, but Dick's book is not all it's cracked up to be. The androids hanging out, trying to take over a police station, and the love angle are each one of them started and never developed. The dropped plot lines was getting irritating.

Recommended only for Dick fans or those fans of the film.




( )
  James_Mourgos | Dec 22, 2016 |
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» Add other authors (60 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Dick, Philip K.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brick, ScottNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dougoud, JacquelineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Duranti, RiccardoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Giancola, DonatoCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Goodfellow, PeterCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Michniewicz, SueCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moore, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sleight, GrahamIntroductionsecondary 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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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
It was January 2021, and Rick Deckard had a license to kill.

Somewhere among the hordes of humans out there, lurked several rogue androids. Deckard's assignment--find them and then... "retire" them.

Trouble was, the androids all looked and acted exactly like humans, and they didn't want to be found!
Haiku summary

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 Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:14 -0400)

(see all 7 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 13 descriptions

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