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Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?: The inspiration for the films Blade Runner and Blade Runner 2049 Kindle Edition
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By 2021, the World War has killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remain covet any living creature, and for people who can’t afford one, companies built incredibly realistic simulacra: horses, birds, cats, sheep. They’ve even built humans. Immigrants to Mars receive androids so sophisticated they are indistinguishable from true men or women. Fearful of the havoc these artificial humans can wreak, the government bans them from Earth. Driven into hiding, unauthorized androids live among human beings, undetected. Rick Deckard, an officially sanctioned bounty hunter, is commissioned to find rogue androids and “retire” them. But when cornered, androids fight back—with lethal force.
Praise for Philip K. Dick
“The most consistently brilliant science fiction writer in the world.”—John Brunner
“A kind of pulp-fiction Kafka, a prophet.”—The New York Times
“[Philip K. Dick] sees all the sparkling—and terrifying—possibilities . . . that other authors shy away from.”—Rolling Stone
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From the Back Cover
THE INSPIRATION FOR BLADERUNNER. . .
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was published in 1968. Grim and foreboding, even today it is a masterpiece ahead of its time.
By 2021, the World War had killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remained coveted any living creature, and for people who couldn't afford one, companies built incredibly realistic simulacrae: horses, birds, cats, sheep. . .
They even built humans.
Emigrees to Mars received androids so sophisticated it was impossible to tell them from true men or women. Fearful of the havoc these artificial humans could wreak, the government banned them from Earth. But when androids didn't want to be identified, they just blended in.
Rick Deckard was an officially sanctioned bounty hunter whose job was to find rogue androids, and to retire them. But cornered, androids tended to fight back, with deadly results.
"[Dick] sees all the sparkling and terrifying possibilities. . . that other authors shy away from."
Rolling Stone --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
“The most consistently brilliant science fiction writer in the world.”—John Brunner
“A kind of pulp-fiction Kafka, a prophet.”—The New York Times --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
- ASIN : B000SEGTI0
- Publisher : Ballantine Books (February 26, 2008)
- Publication date : February 26, 2008
- Language : English
- File size : 2044 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 229 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #20,720 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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By Schwifty on January 4, 2021
My favorite quality of this novel is how pkd shifted the world and examined the cultural impact of it. After WWT, live animals became scarce leading to a market of life like robotic animals. Actual animals became pricey commodities and a symbol of status. Our hero of the novel desires a living animal, and he obsesses over it throughout to an almost comical degree. This is where the title comes in, he owns an electric sheep and wonders if the androids have their own humanlike desires.
A great read, i see why PKD is a legend. His imagination is astounding and breaks all the rules without breaking a sweat. Will read more of his work including this novel again. You should too.
I found the central theme of the novel quite profound and it caused me to consider deeply just what the difference between genuine and counterfeit are, and whether such difference even matters.
Also, I deeply enjoyed the complexity of the characters as there were several moments in the novel where their motives were not easily predictable.
Furthermore, the book had several tense moments when the detective was attempting to ascertain whether one of his targets was an android or not. I was quite surprised by how tense I felt and this is a testament to the quality of the writing.
The end of the book is a fair bit sombre but it feels congruous with the general tone of the book, I was quite satisfied with the end of the novel.
This is a classic example of the science fiction genre and a great read, a real must read!
If you've seen the 1982 Blade Runner movie, you already know Deckard is a bounty hunter....works for law enforcement....and has a license to kill rogue androids aka replicants.
DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP was the inspiration for the old movie as well as Blade Runner 2049 in theatre's now and is the same in some respects, but without the intensity and violence. It kind of has a strange calmness to it....almost like you've taken a mood enhancer, and there's a whole other plot going on. Very bizarre.
I don't want to be a "chicken-head" and give anything away so I'll just say....times are bleak, desperate and totally weird after W.W.T. (World War Terminus) with people trying to survive on a contaminated earth....animals are a rare commodity....and most....those that passed the test have defected to Mars.
Definitely MORE thought provoking than the movie....Definitely NOT the action-packed thriller with brutal fights between bounty hunter and a highly-intelligent & dangerous species of replicant.
"You shall kill only the killers."
Top reviews from other countries
He crams so much information into every paragraph, but it's not banal or mundane, every sentence is fascinating. The creative prose oozes from every page, leaving you mesmerized. There have been many great writers, but it's a rarity to find one who not only invents fantastic stories but also put them into magical words.
If you've never read a PKD novel start here and, like me, I guarantee you, you will send off for a stack more.
His writing is so clever, loaded with detail, that paints a flawless picture in your mind of every scene. And the humor in his books is incredibly good; how I laugh when reading his novels. Jane Austen,; he is not.
PKD is out there on his own; no one else comes close to his unique brilliance.
Many version of the book ,in my country in particular , have been even sold with the title of blade runner instead of the original one, yes that title.....it could have put off so many readers want to be, but it does so much sense once you are in the process of reading this masterpiece of sci fi , and change the name of the book has the only target of selling more copies , as as I said are two completely different stories.
So much have been said on Dick and this book so there is nothing I can add apart that I have finished few weeks ago and the feeling that has left is still fresh in my mind.
I was a little disappointed by the length of the novel ( very short ) but who am I to judge a novel that has influenced the last 50 years of sci fi writing ? ,a must read for any sci-fi fan.
The tale is set in 1992 and there has been a nuclear war leaving Earth in a rather poor state. Many have left, colonising other planets but there are still people on our planet, some of which due to various reasons will never be allowed to leave. Our main character is Rick Deckard who lives with his wife in the remains of San Francisco and works as a bounty hunter for the police department, hunting for illegal androids. He has been given a new assignment as the lead bounty hunter has been attacked by an android and is hospitalized. With the latest such humanoid, with a Nexus-6 frame so detecting them is not as easy as with older models. Thus Rick knows who he is after, but at the same time with the makers of the device needed for assistance, so this corporation knows what is used to detect their devices, and thus can make improvements.
Dick made known in his lifetime what the influences of this book were, and where they came from, but since then, what with the film, so the story has become highly influential on many in different areas of the media. We have the overarching theme here which is what is real and what is fake, but there are many other elements added, such as empathy, the part that religion plays in many people’s lives, and the damage that we do to our environment. Here for instance, due to the nuclear holocaust that happened there is a depletion in animals, and thus to own a real animal and not a robotic simulation is a social status indicator.
There is also a metaphysical element, and it has to be admitted an irony that runs throughout this, and you will immediately notice some of the humour from the very beginning. Rick and his wife when they first wake up here use mood organs to sort out their feelings, rather like some sort of drug and alcohol replacement that many rely upon. By experimentation Iran Deckard, Rick’s wife has found that you can dial up a sense of overwhelming despair and apathy, thus becoming highly depressed. With the androids who have illegally entered Earth from other planets, so we can see that although they might have committed violence and murder elsewhere, in fact coming here all they can at most hope for are a few years in some sort of freedom, although this planet is really a dystopia. This can be seen as a comment on slavery, as you can be free in one place, but a slave elsewhere.
With androids being programmed with false memories, so some do not even know what they really are, and this thus raises the issue of memory and how it works. There are just so many layers to this wonderful book that I like many have read this numerous times, but still keep coming back to it. In all this is not only just a pleasure to read, but very thought provoking.
However, in spite of being written in 1968, it has some relevance for us. We no longer fear nuclear war but we are warming the planet to dangerous levels which will result in sea-level rises and climate changes which will render much of the world uninhabitable as well as causing a great mass extinction of many animal species. Perhaps there will soon be a market for ‘electric’ pets instead of live ones.
In the book, the solution is to colonise other planets but this is simply impracticable, even though the idea was endorsed by the late Stephen Hawking. This is the only planet we have and we should start to take better care of it.