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1 Beaverton Science Fiction and Fantasy- A to Z

Philip K. Dick: Four Novels of the 1960s (Library of America #173)

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Philip K. Dick: Four Novels of the 1960s (Library of America #173) Cover

ISBN13: 9781598530094
ISBN10: 1598530097
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Known in his lifetime primarily to readers of science fiction, Philip K. Dick (1928–1982) is now seen as a uniquely visionary figure, a writer who, in editor Jonathan Lethem's words, "wielded a sardonic yet heartbroken acuity about the plight of being alive in the twentieth century, one that makes him a lonely hero to the readers who cherish him."

This Library of America volume brings together four of Dick's most original novels. The Man in the High Castle (1962), which won the Hugo Award, describes an alternate world in which Japan and Germany have won World War II and America is divided into separate occupation zones. The dizzying The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch (1965) posits a future in which competing hallucinogens proffer different brands of virtual reality, and an interplanetary drug tycoon can transform himself into a godlike figure transcending even physical death.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1968), about a bounty hunter in search of escaped androids in a postapocalyptic society where status is measured by the possession of live animals and religious life is focused on a television personality, was the basis for the movie Blade Runner. Ubik (1969), with its future world of psychic espionage agents and cryonically frozen patients inhabiting an illusory "half-life," pursues Dick's theme of simulated realities and false perceptions to ever more disturbing conclusions, as time collapses on itself and characters stranded in past eras search desperately for the elusive, constantly shape-shifting panacea Ubik. As with most of Dick's novels, no plot summary can suggest the mesmerizing and constantly surprising texture of these astonishing books.

Posing the questions "What is human?" and "What is real?" in a multitude of fascinating ways, Dick produced works — fantastic and weird, yet developed with precise logic, marked by wild humor and soaring flights of religious speculation — that are startlingly prescient imaginative anticipations of 21st-century quandaries.


This Library of America volume brings together four of Dick's most original, mesmerizing, and surprising novels: "The Man in the High Castle, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?," and "Ubik."

About the Author

Philip K. Dick was born in Chicago in 1928 and lived most of his life in California. He briefly attended the University of California, but dropped out before completing any classes. In 1952, he began writing professionally and proceeded to write numerous novels and short story collections. He won the Hugo Award for the best novel in 1962 for The Man in the High Castle, and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best novel of the year in 1974 for Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said. Philip K. Dick died on March 2, 1982, in Santa Ana, California, of heart failure following a stroke.

Jonathan Lethem, editor, is the author of seven novels, including Gun, with Occasional Music; The Fortress of Solitude; and You Don't Love Me Yet. Motherless Brooklyn, his fifth, won the National Book Critics Circle Award and has been translated into twenty languages. Lethem is also the author of two story collections, The Wall of the Eye and Men and Cartoons; a novella, This Shape We're In, and a book of collected essays, The Disappointment Artist.

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genehyde, March 11, 2008 (view all comments by genehyde)
When I first read Man in the High Castle as a teenager I was stunned – this was serious science fiction, set in a world ripe with advertising and drug use, where repressive governments and technology that’s a bit out of control constantly mess with characters as they try to live their daily lives. Dick’s novels were as much about our current lives as those of his imaginary characters, something that sci-fi writers never quite do as well as this fine writer did. It’s a fitting tribute that the Library of America has published these four novels in one volume, quelling any doubts that Dick’s posterity is assured. And then there’s the wonderful thrill that an LOC edition gives to bibliophiles – the beautiful binding, archival-quality paper, sewn-in bookmark, and comfortable size that’s a delight to hold and read.
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lukas, February 13, 2008 (view all comments by lukas)
Finally, cracked visionary sci-fi author Philip K. Dick emerges from the genre ghetto to get the deluxe treatment he deserves. Bad movies continue to be made from his books ("Next" with Nic Cage), but his considerable influence remains with us. Snobs may find faults with his fast and dirty prose, but there's no denying the power of his ideas and the genuine paranoia and dread the course through his best work. This brings together 4 of his best novels in a handsome, annotated package. A second volume is due out this summer. Like Ballard and Burroughs, he went deeper and darker than most of his contemporaries, even if his audience is not as large as it should be.
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Product Details

Philip K. Dick and Jonathan Lethem
Library of America
Lethem, Jonathan
Dick, Philip K.
Lethem, Jonathan
Library of America
Science Fiction - General
Science fiction, american
Science Fiction and Fantasy-A to Z
Edition Description:
Library of America
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
from 12
8.14x5.26x1.09 in. 1.22 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Philip K. Dick: Four Novels of the 1960s (Library of America #173) Used Hardcover
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Product details 900 pages Library of America - English 9781598530094 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , This Library of America volume brings together four of Dick's most original, mesmerizing, and surprising novels: "The Man in the High Castle, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?," and "Ubik."
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