April 5, 2015

Palmer Eldrich's Fourth Stigmata



I have liked the previous things I have read by Dick. These books include “The Man in the High Castle,” “Ubik,” and “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep”. All of them were marvels of world building and storytelling. They were also fun mind-trips that set your thoughts of the future racing.
That said, I never really got into “Three Stigmata”. I’m not sure what it was. Maybe it was me first realizing the sexism in the book, where women are good pretty much for one thing. But I can let that pass. People still smoked everywhere in the book too. There’s a planet to moon videophone call that needs an operator to set up. I get that fiction is as much about the time it is written as it is about the time it is supposed to portray.
Maybe it was the plot, based on the drugs that people use to escape reality. Not sure..

Wait a minute. I know what it was. It was the ending, It didn’t really resolve for me and I have no idea what was going on. The book got too far wound up with its competing realities and it never really unwound, even reading slowly and rereading.

You, however, may like it. Clearly you are smarter than I am.