The Man in the High Castle (book review) Philip K. Dick

Updated: Jul 1

220315: 6th review. just cannot help rereading this, though not much new to add, except maybe it is more convincing that life in japanese-controlled territory is good overall, again an easy, flowing read, that i have read author is modelled on heinlein, that 'eastern aesthetics' is seamlessly integrated, that, as with any great novel, each time it is read i find new insights, scenes, moments, even stylistic touches of typical 'japanese' poetics/prose that i might have missed the first few times, thinking it was just dick's style. and the rounded characters, complex motivations, often frustrated agency, often passive drifting... this is definitely dick's best work and i have read a few... i remember even trying the [book:The I Ching or Book of Changes|534289] until deciding it was simply as any oracle: endlessly interprative...


010218: 5th review. so now i know where to look for a certain scenes (pg. 168-195), though i did reread it all again. and it works fine. thought of assertions of stylistic mundanity, decided it works to tell the most fantastic in the most mundane way. not poetry: ideas. but then also subtle indications in absorption of social thinking dominant to place, time, social structures. no distraction, no insistence, no infodumps, this is easy to reread. and i like the way it ends and does not end...


earlier review last time read: definitely a favorite. premise and possibilities are outlined everywhere else, but what works for me is the layered, glancing, significant interweaving of the plot. characters who have no immediate contact affect each other, sometimes in radically important ways, and the novel is full of ideas rather than spectacle. some argument it is even 'science' fiction, as it contains little science, no explanation for this alternative world...


there is a cross-section of the world in characters, in their thoughts, in how they live, and it is not all super archetype powerful types nor only simply those carried along by changes...


there are dick’s meditations on real and fake, art and how various cultures value it, make it, sell it...


there is buried causality and truth and chance revealed as inevitable...


there is the wonderful book-within-the-book which posits yet another reality...


i have read the whole at least 4(?) times, parts of it more, and count it as my favorite dick book. however much the oracle i ching affected the book… this does not matter. this is one of the best sf novels to read and discover the power of good sf that no other genre let alone mundane fiction can display...

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140718: this is read 3 times. this is the book that made his name. it has been translated but i do not know how: a lot of the pleasure is in the voice, the unique version of Nigerian english used, per

if you like this review, i now have website: www.michaelkamakana.com 220611: this is probably the most academically accurate of the translations I have read of this book, but still prefer commentary o