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The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritchby Philip K. Dick
Synopses & Reviews
“A psychedelic odyssey of hallucinations-within-hallucinations from which no reader emerges unscathed.”—Boston Globe
On Mars, the harsh climate could make any colonist turn to drugs to escape a dead-end existence. Especially when the drug is Can-D, which translates its users into the idyllic world of a Barbie-esque character named Perky Pat. When the mysterious Palmer Eldritch arrives with a new drug called Chew-Z, he offers a more addictive experience, one that might bring the user closer to God. But in a world where everyone is tripping, no promises can be taken at face value.
This Nebula Award nominee is one of Philip K. Dicks enduring classics, at once a deep character study, a dark mystery, and a tightrope walk along the edge of reality and illusion.
Not too long from now, when exiles from a blistering Earth huddle miserably in Martian colonies, the only things that make life bearable are the drugs. Can-D "translates" those who take it into the bodies of Barbie-like dolls. But now Palmer Eldritch has returned after a mysterious disappearance a decade ago, bringing with him a new drug, Chew-Z, even more powerful than Can-D. Marketed under the slogan, "God promises eternal life; we can deliver it," Chew-Z is as mysterious as Eldritch himself. As the readers learn the true origins of Chew-Z and Eldritch, it becomes clear that in a world fueled by hallucinogens, nothing can be taken at face value. In this wildly disoreinting funhouse of a novel, populated by God-like--or perhaps Satanic--takeover artists and corporate psychics, Philip K. Dick explores mysteries that were once the property of St. Paul and Aquinas. His wit, compassion, and knife-edged irony make The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch moving as well as genuinely visionary.
For the exiles from a blistering Earth, Mars is a lonely place, made bearable only by drugs, specifically Can-D, which translates those who take in into a shared hallucination of a Barbie-esque world.
But the new drug Chew-Z promises more than thateternal life itself. But it a world where everyone is tripping, no promises can be taken at face value. When those promises come from Palmer Eldritch, who may be human, alien, or god, they can be trusted even less.
About the Author
Over a writing career that spanned three decades, Philip K. Dick (1928-1982) published 36 science fiction novels and 121 short stories in which he explored the essence of what makes man human and the dangers of centralized power. Toward the end of his life, his work turned toward deeply personal, metaphysical questions concerning the nature of God. Eleven novels and short stories have been adapted to film; notably: Blade Runner (based on Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?), Total Recall, Minority Report, and A Scanner Darkly. The recipient of critical acclaim and numerous awards throughout his career, Dick was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2005, and in 2007 the Library of America published a selection of his novels in three volumes. His work has been translated into more than twenty-five languages.
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