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Our Friends From Frolix 8

3.56  ·  Rating Details ·  1,857 Ratings  ·  104 Reviews

Thors Provoni had gone to the stars to seek help for his people. So far there was no evidence that any other intelligent species existed out there at all, let alone one willing to aid ordinary homo sapiens on Earth where they had become second-class citizens. For in the 22nd Century dominance in human affairs had passed to a cabal
Paperback, 211 pages
Published January 1976 by Panther Books (first published 1970)
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Mar 18, 2016 Lyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Our Friends from Frolix 8, first published by Philip K Dick in 1970 is classic PKD.

An observant student of Dick’s work will recognize many recurring themes such as government surveillance, isolation, affinity with the working classes, Biblical and classical references, rejection of elitism, paranoia and drug use. This one turns drug use on its ear, as many drugs are legal but a “dealer” in this novel sales illegal tracts from a revolutionary minority political hero.

There is also an underlying
Aug 18, 2011 Sandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Unlike Philip K. Dick's previous two novels, 1969's "Ubik" and 1970's "A Maze of Death," his 27th full-length sci-fi book, "Our Friends From Frolix 8," was not released in a hardcover first edition. Rather, it first saw the light of day, later in 1970, as a 60-cent Ace paperback (no. 64400, for all you collectors out there). And whereas those two previous novels had showcased the author giving his favorite theme--the chimeralike nature of reality--a pretty thorough workout, "Our Friends" impress ...more
Jun 10, 2011 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
Whenever I read Philip K. Dick, I react in exactly the same way. The first few pages, I tell myself that, after all, he isn't very good. And then the jagged paranoiac genius of the man kicks in, takes hold, and carries me along. And what a ride it is! Some 200 years in the future, the earth is under the control of Willis Gram, a telepath who sits around all day in pajamas, robe, and slippers while his "New Men," geniuses with bloated heads, give him advice. If one is not an "Unusual" (telepath) ...more
I'll be honest, I didn't really get it. As a huge fan of a lot of his other work (I'll resist the urge to suggest I'm a fan of Dick). And, I wanted to love it, I really did. I just didn't get it.

Maybe I'll give it another go sometime...
Nov 21, 2013 Janice rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
i love pkd, but this book runs around at the height of his "wives are horrible, pathetic shrews; the only other women are vibrant pixie sex monkeys" bullshit.

the end is awesome, though.

but he forgot to tell us that these "new men" have big heads until halfway through, which is kinda bullshit.
Apr 21, 2015 Denis rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hardcover, b-c, special
Finally I got to this one. I have been hording it for years. What a fun read it was. And I loved the artwork for the hardcover Book Club edition by Kim Whitesickles.

Now I know that "Sandy", the very respectful PKD (and now Silverberg) reviewer pointed out a multitude of mechanical flaws in the narrative, and they are surely correct, but I’m not smart enough to notice details such as how many days or hours ahead the ship really arrives or what year is it really, based on correlations of how many
Luke Devenish
Nov 19, 2011 Luke Devenish rated it liked it
What a quirky little oddity. I haven't read Philip K Dick before - a somewhat embarrassing thing to admit - yet I'll certainly be reading him again, even though, I somewhat suspect, this isn't the finest example of his sci-fi genius. While certainly entertaining, this book is a bit like two hundred pages or so of extended foreplay. By the time the real excitement starts, it's all over in a hail of brainwaves. What I loved most was the telepathic Council Chairman Willis Gram, a hilarious villain, ...more
Aug 04, 2013 Michael rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: PKD fans, Matrix fans, sic fi fans
Recommended to Michael by: Serendipity
The main thing I remember about this book is that I got it from my ex-wife when we split up (she had read it and wasn't interested in keeping it) and that I read some other science fiction writer's denunciation of it right about the same time. I can't recall who it was (possibly Thomas Disch?), but it was in the context of a general discussion of PKD's work, and I recall the wording as, more or less, "...of course, no writer is perfect, and even Dick had his bad days. Could anything possibly be ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 23, 2013 Debbie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In future Earth there are 3 types of citizens: the New Men (super-smart) and Unusuals (psychic powers) control the government. Most citizens are Undermen and perform menial tasks. When children are around 12 years-old, they are tested to see if they qualify as New Men or Unusuals. The tests are rigged, and when Nick Appleton’s very bright son fails the exam, Nick decides to take up with the resistance movement. The story zooms along with a love triangle, messy divorce, flying car (squib) chases, ...more
Sep 01, 2011 J.P. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Typical very cool Philip K. Dick book with rampant paranoia, people with different psychic abilities and a dark future. This is one of his best that he wrote late in his career. This is also the funniest book by him I've ever read with a few outright hilarious lines. And you won't believe what the protagonist does for a living. The only science fiction author who can come up with such bizzare ideas and yet make it all work.
Hertzan Chimera
Jun 05, 2012 Hertzan Chimera rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
upgraded this review from 4/5 to 5/5.

Re-read OFFF8 last night and it really hit home (with its opposing political factions running the corporate world as a prison planet in direct confrontation with You The People.

Wow, one wonders a) was PKD a real seer? and b) what's the relevance of his Frolixian Solution i.e. the debraining of the tyrants?
May 20, 2007 Adam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people with brains
I liked this because it reminds me that any "simple" and cruel solution to the problem "how should the world be run" can be undone by a "complex" solution that is at least marginally less cruel. It gives me hope.
Kilburn Adam
Aug 12, 2012 Kilburn Adam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another awesome book by Philip K Dick. Still so many of his books to read. I'm so glad he was was such a prolific writer.
Karl Hallbjörnsson
Not his best but still entertaining thoughtful and funny
Shahab Zargari
Aug 13, 2016 Shahab Zargari rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Classic PKD!
Niente, io ed il vecchio Philip non andiamo d'accordo, la mente c'è, l'immaginazione non manca, ma l'esecuzione lascia a desiderare. È il terzo libro di Dick che leggo, dopo "Ma gli Androidi sognano Pecore Elettriche" e "La Svastica sul Sole", e la mia impressione non è cambiata. Abbiamo un antefatto interessante, delle premesse che potrebbero svilupparsi in qualcosa di notevole, ma la storia si trascina, la scrittura è piatta, se non mediocre in certi momenti, e la caratterizzazione dei persona ...more
Elliot Smoke
Dec 29, 2016 Elliot Smoke rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well-written, well-paced novel, looking at how power corrupts, carves up society and is destroyed. This is a book with a brutal, elegiac quality, as the action shifts from the personal all the way up to the intergalactic, with vulnerable characters apparently doing whatever they can to 'get by', whether its regrooving tyres, printing tonnes of elicit political literature or fretting about personal appearance and hygiene. There's plenty of commentary and satire too, although the sadness of the bo ...more
Dec 15, 2016 Sheri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Life's not fair, especially in the future that Philip K Dick envisions. People's lives & opportunities are determined by their intelligence; a special few enjoy power & remuneration. Everyone else has a scut job. But as you might expect, the system is fixed: those from privileged backgrounds get top test scores; those who aren't, fail the tests. But then, in a plot device we all recognize from the many books & movies we've seen, a stranger comes to town. Any more about that would spo ...more
Lonely Shikari
Dec 01, 2016 Lonely Shikari rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Блестящий роман о маленьком человеке. В какой-то мере он подводит черту под убогой и затхлой реальностью, доводит её до гротескного абсурда, пугающего и нелепого. Плюс весь набор, присущий Дику: детали и мелочи, красиво и живо наполняющие мир, персонажи, которым хочется верить и сопереживать, которые не стоят на месте, а развиваются и живут. Однозначно ид1т в копилку любимых книг.
Факт: впервые в книге Дика прямо, а не завуалировано встретилось слово "fuck".
Kirk Johnson
With the exception of the last paragraph, PKD never kicks into his literary mode in this book, and it makes for painful reading all the way through. I am sorry for myself for reading it.
Gregory Sadler
This is what I'd call a decent, respectable Phillip K. Dick book -- nowhere near the level of some of his novels, where he plays with, or rather puts to work tricky, paradoxical, or deep ideas from metaphysics, epistemology, psychoanalysis, ethics, or religion, binding them into the interwoven lives, desires, and transactions of ordinary and extraordinary people (e.g. The Man In the High Castle, Ubik, The Martian Time-Slip)-- but even Dick's coasting, writing one of the sorts of story that seeme ...more
Scott Holstad
May 16, 2014 Scott Holstad rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Roddy Williams
Nick Appleton lives in a world governed by two new types of human, the New Men and The Unusuals. Children, like Nick’s son Bobby, are given a test when they are eleven, to determine if they are fit to work in government. Nick is convinced that the tests are not rigged but his son knows otherwise.
The tests are rigged, and we are privy to a discussion in the testing centre before Nick and his son even arrive, deciding whether the boy should pass or not. Bobby is quite cynically convinced he will n
Felix Zilich
Nov 19, 2011 Felix Zilich rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
В недалеком будущем человечество поделено на людей высшей и простой категорий. Успешное прохождение федерального теста может обеспечить любому успешное попадание в десятитысячную элиту, которая реально и управляет этой планетой. Понятно, что далеко не все люди согласны с подобным положением вещей. Многие из них с риском для собственной жизни ведут подпольную борьбу и издают запрещенную литературу, утвераждающую, что все люди равны. Вполне логично, что новое правительство выслеживает и жестоко ка ...more
Nov 22, 2016 Mike rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the twenty-second century, the highest levels of Earth's government are dominated by two political parties, based not on ideology, but on biology. The New Men and the Unusuals are a leap ahead in human evolution, new species with intellectual and psychic abilities far beyond homo sapiens, whom they oppress and deride as "Old Men." Since psychoactive drugs are freely available from retail sources, it is anti-government leaflets that are sold by pushers in the secret underground economy. Dick's ...more
This was a novel that could have probably just been made into a short story with a good editor. Two minority groups of humans, one group with super-intelligence and one group that can read minds, end up controlling the government and the fate of a 6 billion+ plus majority of folks who are referred to as "Old Men" and who haven't evolved past the point of having average intelligence. The "Old Men" keep hold alive in the form of their hero, Thors Provoni, who left for the outer reaches of the gala ...more
Stefano Zorba
Jul 01, 2016 Stefano Zorba rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nostri amici da Frolix 8 è un romanzo distopico di Philip K. Dick pubblicato nel 1970, e uno dei lavori meno famosi di uno dei più grandi scrittori di fantascienza mai esistiti.

Il mondo è governato da due mutazioni, gli Uomini Nuovi con un cervello modificato e super-intelligenti e gli Insoliti con capacità paranormali come telepatia, telecinesi e preveggenza. Per gli Uomini Nuovi, gli uomini come noi, non c’è possibilità di scalata sociale né benessere. Lo Stato è poliziesco e repressivo, i con
Aug 01, 2012 Aries rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantascienza
Tra i tanti veri e propri capolavori scritti da Dick questo “Frolix-8” è quasi un fratello minore un po’ sfortunato, tanto che il genitore stesso l’ha poi messo da parte, considerandolo “non ben riuscito”.

Effettivamente l’impressione che si ha leggendolo è quella di un libro che non decolla del tutto, che parte con ottime idee e spunti (già sfruttati prima e dopo dall’autore) ma che non li fa esplodere come solo Dick sa fare.

Abbiamo uno stato di polizia, una società divisa tra Uomini Vecchi, Ins
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Philip K Dick: Our Friends From Frolix 8 3 28 Jun 10, 2012 12:05AM  
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Philip K. Dick was born in Chicago in 1928 and lived most of his life in California. In 1952, he began writing professionally and proceeded to write numerous novels and short-story collections. He won the Hugo Award for the best novel in 1962 for The Man in the High Castle and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best novel of the year in 1974 for Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said. Philip K. Di ...more
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“God is dead,' Nick said. 'They found his carcass in 2019. Floating in space near Alpha.'

'They found the remains of an organism advanced several thousand times over what we are,' Charley said. 'And evidently could create habitable worlds and populate them with living organisms, derived from itself. But that doesn't prove it was God.”
“I am life,’ the girl said.
‘What?’ he said, startled.
‘To you, I am life. What are you, thirty-eight? Forty? What have you learned? Have you done anything? Look at me, look. I’m life and when you’re done with me, some of it rubs off on you. You don’t feel so old now, do you? With me here in the squib beside you.’
Nick said, ‘I’m thirty-four and I don’t feel old. As a matter of fact, sitting here with you makes me feel older, not younger. Nothing is rubbing off.’
‘It will,’ she said.”
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