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Philip K Dick is one of the most overlooked writers of the mid 20th Century in my view. He has continually asked the interesting and disturbing questions about what is reality. In this, his best known book (albeit known to most under this title and not its more accurate and provacative release title, "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?") he asks it with a callous disregard for the answer, so long as it is the truth. Sometimes the truth hurts and bad things need to be done; Dick doesn't shy away from either.
I enjoyed listening to this for the bit parts, too. A by-product of familiarity perhaps, sometimes text can become banal. Not this text. The entrophy of the society it depicts, and which Scott Brick captures well in his performance, is never lost because the "bits" sustain the whole. JR Esidore (Brick sounding like William Sanderson as F B Farnum in "Deadwood") is a treat. His faltering "chicken head" wisdom is as ironic as it is insightful. Buster Friendly (perhaps a foerunner to the caller in Hunger Games) is annoying but unforgettable. Rachael is beautiful and (as herself and as Pris) callous as can be imagined. And for all of that, Deckard is as complex, and flawed and believable as he was 50 years ago, (30 years ago, when I first read this, at least).
I think this is an important book. It is a signpost for The Terminator which was to come and a reminder of the ease with which we can slip into genocide, the worship of false idols and belief in our own superiority which has gone, but is never really lost. This is serious and entertaining science fiction for a person who likes to think about why we do the things we do.
34 of 34 people found this review helpful
It has almost no relation to the movie but makes some very interesting points in its own right. In some ways I like it even better than the movie. There is a whole subplot in the book about people needing to care for the remaining animals on the planet only alluded to in the movie with the one line asking if the owl is real. In the book people that cannot afford real animals to take of get electric ones to keep face with the neighbors. The commentary on this and how culty people can be might turn some off but I thought it made the story more relevant to the real world.
55 of 57 people found this review helpful
Surely, as this is a telling of 'Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?' should it not be called the same? Having been a fan of the film for many years I had never got around to reading the book. It is so completely different it was almost a different story. So why call it 'Blade Runner'?
Well read; excellent story; so random and confusing in places it made my head sore. A must for any sci fi fans who likes off-the-world worlds.
20 of 20 people found this review helpful
Really enjoyed the book. It is vastly different from the film and I think calling the audiobook "Blade Runner" is a bit disingenuous. The hunt for the androids is almost a sub plot and the book concentrates more on creating a very terrifying and believable futuristic world and the desperate people still stick on earth after a devastating war. In the book, Deckard muses on his desire to own a real animal instead of a robotic imitation and how publicity admitting you have a robot is a social faux pas. A haunting book that is well read and, in my opinion, better than the film.
13 of 14 people found this review helpful
There's too many good words to say about Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, and Blade Runner. If you listen carefully, you will discover enlightenment that will take a lifetime to unravel.
What makes this story fantastic is it's brilliantly alien and yet scarily probable setting. The writing doesn't so much capture a scene as it does a brooding and oppressive atmosphere of corporate domination and philosophical insecurity. Scott Brick brings it all to life with a compelling and gritty performance.