Where were you ? Welcome back !!!One of my faves EVER
This new website is an absolute eyesore and gave me zero motivations to approach it ?Where were you ? Welcome back !!!
I am currently on a Philip K Dick reading binge. I read "Do androids..." (Blade Runner is one of my favorite movies ever) several years ago, and it left me cold, I don't know why. Then I picked it up again last year, and this time it totally clicked with me, which is what I expected the first time, as I normally love classic Sci-Fi with a dystopian/paranoid twist, like J.G Ballard. I've read most of his classic novels by now, and Ubik is indeed a masterpiece. I loved it so much. I think he's at his absolute peak in that novel, masterfully playing with his usual topics of psyche manipulation, time travel and sheer paranoia. The plot is so intricate, plenty of amazing surreal twists, and the crazy ideas he throws in, one after another, are a joy to read. He was such a visionary. For me he is a bit like the sci-fi version of HP Lovecraft. They both created totally unique visions and worlds within a established genre, and even if critics might say they were not the best stylists, imo their very personal writing styles were perfect for the worlds and settings, both physical and psychological, they created, to the point that they basically created sub-genres within the Sci Fi and Horror genres, as proved by the countless imitators they've both had, especially Lovecraft.
IKR ? And there are less and less posters around, so the annoying ones (ofc those won't leave) are even more blatantly THERE than ever beforeThis new website is an absolute eyesore and gave me zero motivations to approach it ?
Back to topic, I couldn't agree more: both PKD and HPL are among my all-time faves, and it's totally unfair and reductive to label them as "horror" or "sci-fi" writers. Dick in particular put so many references and reflections on universal themes (psychology, religion, philosophy, among others) that lift him way above the "genre": I probably read more than 20 of his novels, and if I had to choose a "favourite" writer it'd be him. If you still haven't read it, I suggest you A Maze of Death, for me even better than Do androids... and almost as good as Ubik.
As far as my current readings are concerned, I'm busy with Hugo's Notre-Dame de Paris, and I have to say that after a very rough start it's now going quite swiftly. I'm not in love with Paris - like at all - but some of his descriptions of the city are amazing.
A Scanner Darkly is another masterpiece, and the movie with Keanu Reeves is absolutely on par with the quality of the novel Among my other faves, Time Out of Joint, Counter-clock World and The Game-Players of Titan. Despite its fame, I'm not overly fond of the Valis trilogy, conversely.IKR ? And there are less and less posters around, so the annoying ones (ofc those won't leave) are even more blatantly THERE than ever before
A Maze of Death is next on my reading list and I am already intrigued by the plot. I've started with the best known ones. So far I've read like 7, and there's not one that I wouldn't give at least 4 out of 5 stars (sorry for this crude "review" shortcut, but you'll get my point). I loved a A Scanner Darkly so much. One of the best books I've ever read about drugs and its effects on the mind, and great plot too, as usual. Very harrowing, and it sounds 100% true, with all those junkies gradually losing the plot in the dystopian, neon-lit metropolis; there is something almost poetic about it; and I wonder to what extent drugs consumption inspired his writing. Surely there's a clear connection with all the paranoia-driven main characters, who are always on the verge of kind of de-construct themselves, and those hallucinatory half-glimpsed alternative worlds, though we are never really sure if it is the other way around and the alternative one is indeed the real one and viceversa. I know he had a sort of epiphany in his latest years and what he wrote afterwards was far more mystical and philosophical, like soul searching through Sci-Fi (Valis, I think, is his best book from that era). Another thing I love about him is how concise his books are; just the right legth for his ideas and stories to develop without meandering or getting lost in a jumble of overwriting. I usually read his books listening to John Foxx's Metamatic, which is pretty much the musical equivalent of his books. It's a dystopian, ice cold and detached old classic electro-pop album, totally brilliant and with some of the best lyrics I've ever heard ( "standing in the dark, watching you glow, lifting a receiver, nobody I know"... I mean, how good is that) It's like the perfect soundtrack, but that's a penchant of mine ( I hate the new emoticons, lol)
Let me know about Victor Hugo when you finish it, because I've always been tempted to read him but somehow I never have, and I value so much your opinion to give him a try if you like him.