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 exactly like humans, and they didn’t want to be found!
Title: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep | Author: Philip K. Dick | Publisher: DoubleDay | Pub. Date: 1968 | Pages: 224 | AISN: B000SEGTI0 | Genre: Science Fiction | Language: English | Triggers: None | Rating: 4 out of 5 | Source: Self-purchased
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Review
With themes of identity, reality, empathy, intelligence and memory, this novel leaves you with more questions than answers.
This novel follows Rick Deckard, civil servant/ bounty hunter who has been given a mission to retire 6 Android Nexus-6 robots, which look just like humans, and have migrated over from Mars. Set in a post-apocalyptic world that has been damaged by nuclear war; worth, value and the meaning of life is determined by owning an animal(s), which have become incredibly rare following the aftereffects of the war. Fakes and exact replicas are used to present a semblance of higher social status, requiring a similar level of care to those that are real, but in the end, they only bring a false sense of happiness.
It took me a few chapters to feel my rhythm with this one, but when I got into the groove I was invested and intrigued to see what on earth was going to happen next. The turning point for me was the chapter with the cat which amused me and won me over. Perhaps it shouldn’t have, but this subtle hint at humour that bled through the cracks of the overall incredibly dire, bleak setting, combined with Rick’s existential crisis was what I needed to convert me as a fan, it’s also a deeply important part of the book in my opinion.
I feel I should clarify here, that the more questions than answers isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It leaves you thinking about the novel for days and more afterwards. What is the truth? I’m sure there are equal arguments for either side. I wonder if Philip K. Dick actually ever knew himself?
What I didn’t really feel was necessary was the whole deal with Rachel Rosen, like, I get it, but did it really add any depth to the story? I don’t think so, and it felt kind of forced and abrupt as well. Rick was getting on with his wife one second and then bam! Bleurgh.
I never thought I would feel a great empathy for a spider before but I really did, and therefore I am giving this novel 4 spiders legs!
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I agree that the Rachel affair was unnecessary. In the end, she kills his sacred animal and all Rick is left with is an impressive body count , a life full of useless “kipple”, even the world’s most popular religion is fake.
Great book, and great to read your review! I hope they make a movie 🙂
Did they not already make the movie? Isn’t that what Blade Runner is? (I haven’t watched it yet!)
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This book was one of my favorite classroom reads in my freshman year of college! I liked it so much I just recently bought my boyfriend a copy of the book since he’s such a fan of the movies based on it.
Aw, that is so cute! I hope he enjoys it as much as the movie!
You know, I read this when I was in my first flush of scifi fandom, so not long after it was published! I haven’t any clear memories of it, apart from ‘wow!’ Your review reminds me of something, some brief stirrings. Perhaps I should reread it over Christmas 2020….
Haha!! I love that you’re already planning next years Christmas tbr!
It was too dense for me. Good for you on enjoying it.
It took me a few chapters but it definitely paid off for me!
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