Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick

Reviewed by Nick Knuth (Library Patron)

In Philip K. Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? we follow the bounty hunter Rick Dickard in a post-apocalyptic San Francisco as he is hired to retire androids who have emigrated to earth. These androids are colonial slaves and have killed their masters to be able to emigrate back to earth. Counterintuitively, human life has drawn a great desire for real animals, after the earth-threatening War Terminus. One question still remains for Rick to answer. What is the main difference between androids and human life? What is Rick doing with his life retiring all of these androids? Rick will discover the unimagined when hunting down these androids.

I enjoyed reading the book because Philip K. Dick does a great job to paint the picture of a post-apocalyptic reality, where all known animals are on the brink of extinction, and how the role of jobs changes when manufacturers start to create almost identical android counterparts. It is exciting reading Philip K. Dick’s everchanging emotions of Rick when he is involved with these monumental tasks. This was for sure a page-turner, and Philip K. Dick makes sure the reader is always engaged, by leaving many cliffhangers at the end of important chapters. The only downside to the book is at some points where the reader can be very perplexed. It feels like there is a lack of information needed from Philip K. Dick to understand the direction in which the plot is heading. Besides that, it is a great read for high schoolers as far as appropriate material. I would recommend this book to enjoyers of other dystopian novels such as The Hunger Games and Divergent. Because books such as Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? and Big Brother by George Orwell, were the small match that created the larger flame of now multiple dystopian novels, that had the plot play out in very different societies from today’s standard. For those interested in the 1982 Blade Runner, or the 2017 Bladerunner 2049, this book is a great introduction to the same setting that both the protagonists deal with in discovering what is human and what is an android. However, many of the detail such as plot and characters are different between book and movie. I would recommend reading the book and then watching the movies if you have not watched them. But I would not recommend watching the movies, and then reading the book, because there are too many differences. Overall, I would give this book a 7.5 out of 10 as it is a fairly easy and fun read!

Available through the Bridges Library System

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