Give me books, fruit, french wine and fine weather and a little music out of doors. --John Keats

Sunday, October 2, 2011

"Time Out of Joint" by Philip K. Dick

Here's my second foray into the books of Philip K Dick, author of the novella that served as the basis for the movie Blade Runner. I started to love this book as soon as Vic couldn't find the light cord in the bathroom. Weirdness! It's great! And unexplained weirdness? Even better!

This is the story of semi-loser Ragle Gumm, who lives with his sister Margo and her husband Vic somewhere in 1959 America. Ragle has never accomplished much in life, other than his wildly successful run as winner of a national newspaper contest, but he is content in his lack of ambition. That is, until he begins to find that reality may not be as substantial as he has always assumed.

I truly enjoyed this book. The questions, the fascinatingly illogical hallucinations, the dawning realization that Not Everything Is As It Seems. (Most books with that element tend to be awesome.) The reader is on a quest to discover the truth right alongside Ragle Gumm.

However, the book was not pure awesomeness all the way through. Towards the end, I was distracted by things that rang false. Some elements had changed too much (fashion, speech, money) and others hadn't changed enough (prices, books, computer printouts). I suppose I was too hung up on expecting the world in the book to mirror reality more closely, but why should it?

I also must admit that the very end had me expecting Ragle to make a speech about getting on the spaceship in order to go to Blargon 7 in search of alternative fuels . . . I'm guessing I'm the only one whose mind made that leap, though.

2 comments:

Becky (Page Turners) said...

I am totally going to read this. My partner is always wanting me to watch Blade Runner but I have no interest in it at all. This book on the other hand sounds great and Blade Runner is based on it - perfect!

Kathy said...

Ooh, ooh (hands fluttering) sorry for the misunderstanding: the same author wrote both books, but Blade Runner is based on Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? It's another interesting one, though. You may want to try it!

P.S. You do know that Harrison Ford is in Blade Runner, right? :)