VALIS

VALIS

4.1 32
by Philip K. Dick
     
 

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“Dick is one of the ten best American writers of the twentieth century, which is saying a lot. Dick was a kind of Kafka steeped in LSD and rage.”—Roberto Bolaño

What is VALIS? This question is at the heart of Philip K. Dick’s ground-breaking novel, and the first book in his defining trilogy. When a beam of pink light begins

Overview

“Dick is one of the ten best American writers of the twentieth century, which is saying a lot. Dick was a kind of Kafka steeped in LSD and rage.”—Roberto Bolaño

What is VALIS? This question is at the heart of Philip K. Dick’s ground-breaking novel, and the first book in his defining trilogy. When a beam of pink light begins giving a schizophrenic man named Horselover Fat (who just might also be known as Philip K. Dick) visions of an alternate Earth where the Roman Empire still reigns, he must decide whether he is crazy, or whether a godlike entity is showing him the true nature of the world.

VALIS is essential reading for any true Philip K. Dick fan, a novel that Roberto Bolaño called “more disturbing than any novel by [Carson] McCullers.” By the end, like Dick himself, you will be left wondering what is real, what is fiction, and just what the price is for divine inspiration.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The quest for God is the binding theme of this trilogy. The ``funny and painful and sometimes brilliant'' VALIS(anagram) finds protagonist and Dick alter-ego Horselover Fat unable to reconcile human suffering with his belief in God. Invasion is a ``fascinating and highly readable'' vision of Armageddon, blending New Testament, Kabbalah and Dick's own worldview. In Transmigration , Angel Archer reminisces about her father-in-law, Timothy, an Episcopal bishop obsessed with a set of ancient scrolls that shed faith-threatening new light on Jesus: ``This finely crafted, odd but compelling book demonstrates Dick's great erudition, keen human insight and subtle ironic sense of humor,'' said PW. (July)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780547601342
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
10/18/2011
Series:
Valis Trilogy , #1
Sold by:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
240
Sales rank:
276,662
File size:
311 KB

Meet the Author

Over a writing career that spanned three decades, PHILIP K. DICK(1928–1982) published 36 science fiction novels and 121 short stories in which he explored the essence of what makes man human and the dangers of centralized power. Toward the end of his life, his work turned toward deeply personal, metaphysical questions concerning the nature of God. Eleven novels and short stories have been adapted to film, notably Blade Runner (based on Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?), Total Recall,Minority Report, and A Scanner Darkly. The recipient of critical acclaim and numerous awards throughout his career, Dick was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2005, and in 2007 the Library of America published a selection of his novels in three volumes. His work has been translated into more than twenty-five languages.

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Valis 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 32 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the only book that I've ever read that has the air of 'The Matrix,' which is a great movie. If you question reality and what we call 'God' itself, read this book, and you'll literally be 'enlightened', but not in some hokey spiritual way. I'd recommend this to anyone who has ever thought, 'Who are we? What are we? From where did we come?' An excellent novel.
Buer_Douglas More than 1 year ago
It took me a while to get into this book, but once I did I couldn't put it down. A really unique look at God and insanity and how the two intersect. I will definitely be reading it again in the near future.
trhummer More than 1 year ago
This is one of those fascinating bad books (like Melville's "Pierre") that one is at a loss to explain: not in terms of its subject or style, but more in terms of its existing at all. If anyone other than Philip K. Dick had written this. . . but no one else could possibly have written it. Soggily plotted, executed with all the attention to craft that Tom Sawyer gave the fence he was whitewashing, "Valis" nonetheless exerts a gravitational pull; I can imagine that for some people (Dick included) it is a gravity well. Part of what holds the reader is the knowledge, which the novel insists on and reminds us of, that certain ingredients of this story are autobiographical. The pink laser, the delivery girl with the fish pendant, an autodidact's brew of Gnosticism and information theory: these things all were part of Dick's personal narrative. All in all, reading this book is like watching a wreck go down on the Rube Goldberg Highway to Dysfunctional Heaven.
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