The Man in the High Castle by Philip Dick book review | Book Addicts

The Man in the High Castle by Philip Dick

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The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick is a novel about a different world than the one we live in, a world in which Germany won World War II and now Nazis and the Japanese share the United States, the Nazis on the east coast and the Japs on the west coast.  It’s a horrible world and, honestly, horrible writing.  Philip Dick is an acquired taste.

0 out of 10 stars.  The idea is interesting, but Philip Dick’s writing is an acquired taste and it’s a taste I have not acquired.  The sentences are jerky.  The language very odd.  There are a lot of one word sentences that seem ill-placed to me.  Joy.  Or “The man goggled at him.”  What’s a goggle?

The story is the same as the Amazon series and I have to admit the series is much better.  The novel is slow and starts with the antiques dealer Childan who is so wrapped up in everything Japanese.  It’s hard to understand at parts and I couldn’t make it past the first fourth of the novel.  Since I’ve already watched the series, that’s pretty bad.  I should be able to follow it easily.  But alas, no.

So here’s the uber top secret plot.  The young people in this horrible future are secretly carrying and relaying tapes.  They don’t know where they are coming from, but inevitably they are being delivered to the man in the high castle.  At the very end we discover they are coming from the Japanese Minister.  He has the ability to change dimensions and suddenly appear in an alternate universe.  When he goes to these places he brings back with him a recording of his adventures.  Those are the tapes.  If you’ve ever watched the old series Sliders, it’s the same concept with a WWII spin.  Each alternate universe has a slightly different government.

0 out of 10 stars.  If you’re interested in the plot, do yourself a favor and watch the series instead.  Much more entertaining.  It’s hard to read novels where the author has fallen in love with his words.  Because he forgets that he’s telling a story, not creating a language. 😉

In his room on Hayes Street, Frank Frink lay in bed wondering how to get up. Sun glared past the blind onto the heap of clothes that had fallen to the floor. His glasses, too. Would he step on them? Try to get to the bathroom by other route, he thought. Crawl or roll. His head ached but he did not feel sad. Never look back, he decided. Time? The clock on the dresser. Eleven-thirty! Good grief. But still he lay.

Reviewed by Devin.

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