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Wren
2003-01-18, 01:53
The last few times I've been out I've taken books by Philip K. Dick. He's a science fiction writer who has provided the basis for several Hollywood movies like Minority Report and Total Recall.

I spent the New Year's portion of my Christmas break hiking a depressingly soggy portion of the Florida Trail in the Apalachicola forest and read both Ubik and The Divine Invasion by the same guy. Ubik is "about" an aerosol spray that restores normal reality for those who are dead but don't realize it yet. The Divine Invasion is about a future smuggling of God back to Earth in the womb of a woman who has muscular dystrophy.

Ubik tells the story of Joe Chip, who works for an anti-telepath agency which provides privacy services to industries being infiltrated by telepaths of ill intent. He, and many of his kin, are subjected to an explosion on the moon and they all see their employer killed. Later, though, they begin to see their employer's face on all of the money they spend and time starts rolling backwards. In one spot a guy sees his refrigerator revert from a normal coin-operated supercooling device back to some loud inefficient thing from the thirties. Plus, the people who witnessed the explosions are being aged and dried out like beef jerky. That's enough of that.

The Divine Invasion is about a brain-damaged boy named Emmanuel who is the product of a divine birth on another planet. It seems that we've been wrong all along: when Jesus was crucified, it wasn't for him to die for our sins, but because we're all a bunch of insane animals. The crucifixion of Jesus pretty much shattered the spirit of God in the universe, and after a time he coalesced on another planet and was desperate to get back home. Once human colonization made it that far, he piggybacked a ride home in her womb to reconquer earth, and also to re-remember who he is.

This stuff isn't A Walk in the Woods (which is awesome), but it's a really good way to spend a night. Philip K. Dick has a way with words that I like.

Redbeard
2003-01-18, 10:12
You may have actually convinced me to go to a book store instead of rereading Mercedes Lackey for the tenth time. But maybe not, books are too damn expensive anymore!

SGT Rock
2003-01-18, 11:01
Thank goodness for used book stores.