Monday, February 19, 2018

THE GAME-PLAYERS OF TITAN




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The Game-Players of Titan, Philip K Dick, Ace Books, 1963, 215 pp
 
 
Reading Philip K Dick, for me, is like hanging out with a super odd friend and just marveling at how very odd he is. This is the ninth book I have read by him. I am reading his books roughly in the order he published them though I have skipped a few. He was very prolific at the beginning and it seems I can only take so much of his clunky prose.
However, he was so prescient, perhaps the most of all speculative writers ever and that is why he fascinates me and many other readers. 

In this one, Earth is ruled by an alien race that presents as amorphous blobs. The human race is dying off due to a low birth rate. The remaining adults are obsessed with Bluff, a game in which they gamble for cities and spouses, while drinking heavily.

It is funny in a black humor way. All the characters are unlikable. Everything changes every few pages. The set piece is a game of Bluff on the alien planet Titan, with the two races competing for Earth.

Read it at your own risk!


(The Game-Players of Titan is mostly out of print. Try your library or favorite used book seller.)

13 comments:

  1. Odd indeed. Did you like it?

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    1. I found it amusing. Politics as a poker game.

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    2. Politics is more chess than poker I think. ;-)

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    3. Well it should be but sometimes is isn't played that way as far as I can see.

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  2. I loved Do Androids Dream of Electric Dreams but sadly I haven't read anything else by Philip K Dick, yet!

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    1. Oh, I haven't gotten to that one. It was the book that was adapted into Blade Runner right? I plan to read it before I see either of the movies! I think my favorite PKD so far was The Man in the High Castle. Now I need to watch that adaptation.

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  3. I might have played Bluff once or twice. LOL. But not on Titan. It must be a bit funny.

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    1. You made me laugh today Susan!

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  4. My younger daughter is a big Philip K. Dick fan and has tried to get me to read him for years, so far unsuccessfully. She did persuade me to watch the television series based on The Man in the High Castle, which I found interesting, so maybe I will get around to him one of these days. I think your admonition to read at my own risk is probably a good one.

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    1. Well he is an acquired taste, that is for sure. I read The Man in the High Castle. It was the best one I have read so far, but still risky.

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  5. I am aware of Philip K. Dick as an author, but have yet to read any of his novels.

    Which of his novels would you recommend reading first for those of us wanting to branch out and try his books??

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    1. Well I am only up to 1963 in his books and I suppose, of what I have read so far, The Man in the High Castle would be a good one to start with. It has his signature weirdness but is somehow more accessible than some of the others. I think his most well known was Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. Blade Runner, the movie(s) was adapted from that one, but I have not read it yet, so cannot necessarily recommend it.

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    2. Thank you!! I will check out The Man in the High Castle.

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