I have never read a book by Philip K. Dick before, and after my first foray I am exceedingly glad that I started. Of course, I chose perhaps one of his most famous novels to read first, and not because of Blade Runner ( I haven’t even seen the film). But because the whole concept was intriguing.
Living in a post-apocalypse world, Rick Deckard is a bounty hunter, whose job it is to hunt down escaped androids and retire them. He faced his toughest challenge when eight Nexus-6 types escaped from Mars (the new home to the human colony) and landed on Earth, seriously injuring Deckard’s colleague.
The first few pages served as a perfect way to draw me. There was no explanation of this world I found myself in, just a confidence that reader would pick it up along the way. The book launched into things such as Buster Friendly and the Mood organ, electric animals and the desirability of any and every animal. All in all, it’s a very,very clever book.
It’s an entirely believable world, which is tarnished by the existence of characters such as Rachel Rosen, of course this feeling was probably the point she was included. She was never a character that garnered much sympathy and I was a little bit disappointed that Rick Deckard was attracted to her. But then, such is the complexity of well written character.
Deckard himself was a hard one to decipher, but overall was an enjoyable guy to follow. He did his job well and threw up realistic moral qualms at certain points of the story. But then, his weaknesses made him seem more human and the end, when he was suffering a crisis, put hm in a better light and helped me to understand him more.
Of course, the greatest thing about this book was the world that it was set in. Everything was believable and much thought was put into it, from the annoying Buster Friendly to the migration to Mars, from the obvious devotion to animals to Mercerism. Everything included had a reason and was well thought through, which is extremely impressive.
At times the writing could be a bit dry, but this didn’t particularly ruin the book. In fact it’s once that I would definitely recommend to anybody (even if they don’t particularly like sci-fi). I will certainly be picking up more of Philip K. Dick’s books.