Back to reading good old Philip K. Dick, whose near future novels with distorted societies have always spoken to me. But not this time, and I think it is because I listened to this book in an audio format. I’m sure I missed something. The topic itself is interesting. The book handles about a loss of identity, reality vs. perception, celebrity vs. ordinariness, and drugs and societies. Usually, such a list would be enough to get me going and enjoy the ride ahead. What the heck went wrong?
The main character Jason Taverner is a well-known celebrity. He wakes up with a loss of his status and the security it brings. I was hooked up this far. I was interested in seeing how he navigated through the issue. But then Kathy a teenage ID forger with a strong libido enters the play, and I wanted to stop listening to the book. Somehow the woman vexed me too much. She felt like all the other Dick’s female characters with too much drama, too strong libido, and taste for older men. I’m not sure if I had been more emphatic towards her if I had read the book instead of listening to it. But Kathy ruined the book for me. I couldn’t care less about her Labor camp boyfriend and how she uses sex to aid her boyfriend’s return. After her, I didn’t get my mood back. I let so many important factors float past me.
That said, the book subject about celebrity and ordinariness is interesting. The book pointed out well the superiority reserved for the rich and/or famous. That an entitlement makes them more valuable human beings than let’s say a janitor. Not counting out the unfair advantage they get over others with the perks they receive. I’m afraid that kind of entitlement is on the rise. The thought one person can be valuable over other is appalling. I’ll jump out of the book subject and say it is not only the celebrities that think in terms of entitlement. Everyone now days seem to emphasize what is due to them rather what their duties are towards others. I find this constant scream of me, me, me problematic for the future. You are not that special neither am I.
I think I have to get a print version of the book and do another review. I’m more than sure I missed something while listening and got too hangup with Kathy and her teenage sex addiction (and Philip K. Dick’s obsession for teenagers wanting to have sex with older men. The same subject came up with Our Friends from Frolix 8.)
Thank you for reading this messed up review.
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