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The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick 1: The Short Happy Life of the Brown Oxford (The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick #1)

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4.23  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,923 Ratings  ·  111 Reviews
Many thousands of readers consider Philip K. Dick the greatest science fiction mind on any planet. Since his untimely death in 1982, interest in his works has continued to mount, and his reputation has been further enhanced by a growing body of critical attention. Dick won the prestigious Hugo Award for best novel of 1963 for "The Man in the High Castle, " and in the last ...more
Paperback, 432 pages
Published May 1st 2002 by Citadel (first published January 1st 1987)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Manny
Nov 27, 2015 Manny marked it as to-read
Because you are currently reading The Theory of Groups and Quantum Mechanics, a few recommendations in Science,
Goodreads told me just now. This book was fourth on the list.

Well, that's either very clever or very stupid.
Jack Stovold
Mar 17, 2012 Jack Stovold rated it really liked it
Having never read any Philip K. Dick, but long having an interest, I’ve decided to read through all his works in chronological order as best as I can (for various reasons, I won’t be able to read his first novel, Gather Yourselves Together, until July). I want to give you my impressions of his works as a first-timer and observe the evolution of his writing.
I started with this one.
This collection contains most of Dick’s earliest stories, mostly written in 1952, although the first one, “Stabil
...more
Jessica
Jun 18, 2008 Jessica rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: SF, F&SF, short-story, skeptics
I admit, I am biased. The short story form is under appreciated and under utilized and I would much rather see genius is the short form than mediocrity in the novel. PKD is the type of writer that makes you remember that the short story form is an art form and much more difficult to pull off than other, longer forms. Despite that he's relegated to "genre writer" category, there are numerous short stories that delve into deeper areas of philosophy, humanism, and, of course, the future of the worl ...more
Jim
Jul 27, 2008 Jim rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi-geek
This collection of early (as in pre-breakdown) Philip K. Dick stories runs the gamut from later-became-blockbusters such as "Paycheck" to hidden gems like "Beyond Lies the Wub". If you're not familiar with Philip K. Dick, this is a good place to start.
Mark
Apr 02, 2011 Mark rated it really liked it
Shelves: sf, short-stories
I generally like Philip K. Dick better in his short stories. He has fantastic and weird ideas, but too often his plotting and characterization can't sustain a novel length. Anyhoo, this is a collection of his earliest short/medium length works, covering 1952-55. Many are strongly influenced by the cold war, something that oddly contrasts with the current U.S. culture that has us fighting three simultaneous wars of choice. Among of my favorites is "The Preserving Machine" wherein a scientist is s ...more
TAB
May 28, 2013 TAB rated it really liked it
Shelves: america, 1950s
Stupendous collection of short stories, I have been converted to Dick's idea of science fiction (set out by him in the preface) that the lead character of a science fiction story should not be a person but instead, an idea. An idea that has roots in this, the modern world, but changes the face of what we know so as to make us question the possibilities of our future (and in some cases our alternate past or present). Give me more!

Best stories: "Beyond Lies the Wub", "The Defenders", "Paycheck", "
...more
Scurra
May 05, 2009 Scurra rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
The five volumes of Dick's collected stories are a masterclass in how to write short stories from intimate character studies to massive universe spanning plots, all wrapped up in a few pages.

And even more impressive is that very few of them take place in the same world. So often a massive amount of backstory has to be sketched in for us, or sometimes simply left for us to infer, and yet almost every time it works and is consistent.

Not every story is perfect, but more than enough of them are to j
...more
Nick
Dec 25, 2012 Nick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, history, fantasy
So damn excellent. This is one of those books I never wanted to finish. I was going to make a list of stories which were excellent, but it was like 2/3 of the stories. If you know Phillip K. Dick's style you'll know how these generally go. Odd, out-of-place naive writing style. Authoritarian themes, cold war allegories, nuclear stuff, soft scifi, characters who cant tell illusion from reality. There were a surprising amount of totally fantastical scenarios here. Anyway this book was basically pe ...more
Yulande Lindsay
Apr 21, 2012 Yulande Lindsay rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thoroughly enjoyed this collection of stories by Philip K. Dick. The sheer range of his imagination staggers. His exploration of a variety of subjects, in particular the consequences of war, result in stories that are often insightful and yes, often chilling as one recognizes the possibilities presented in each one. My favourites include: Nanny, Colony, The King of the Elves, The Variable Man and Paycheck.
Pranjal Sahu
Nov 24, 2013 Pranjal Sahu rated it it was amazing
Movies like Minority Report, The Adjustment Bureau influenced me so much that I decided I need to read more of his stories. At first I thought I would prepare a list of favorite stories from this collection but it turns out every single one of it is a gem. Twists, suspense, futuristic... it has got everything. Many of the stories are based on and deal with wars and its after effects.
Nick
Jun 21, 2008 Nick rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
This was my first bush with PKD, and immediately made me a convert. This collection is more than a few science fiction short stories. This is PKD at his best, flirting with an idea, stretching it as far as he can, stretching you as far as he can, and finishing with a great story leaving you with plenty to ponder. There really isn't a bad story in this extensive collection.
Brian Schwartz
Jul 29, 2013 Brian Schwartz rated it really liked it
This first volume of Philip K. Dick’s short fiction introduces the themes that dominate his writing throughout his storied career. His abhorrence of war. Fear of atomic destruction. The folly of over reliance on technology. Dick is able to introduce these themes, make the reader consider his subtext, all while telling superb, plot driven fiction.
Rebecca
Nov 14, 2012 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
I am not going to write a summary, it is annoying when people do that. Congratulations on restating everything that is located on the back of the book. Anyway, this is what I think...
This is one of those books I recommend purchasing and not borrowing from a library or a friend. Great short stories that can be read and reread many times.
Marts  (Thinker)
This is a rather interesting tale. So happens, a crew member on this ship buys an animal from a native for only 50 cents. Its strange but whats even stranger is that he talks, and hey, its no ordinary talking the thing is rather philosophical, anyway its called a Wub... and its interesting to learn what happens to him!!
Tim Juchter
Apr 07, 2007 Tim Juchter rated it really liked it
You can see all Dick's themes developing, from simple stories about a dog whose barking is the only thing frightening away dangerous aliens, to more involved fantasies about a subterranean post-apocalyptic future. "Beyond Lies the Wub" might make you consider vegetarianism.
Ratnesh Neema
Mar 05, 2013 Ratnesh Neema rated it really liked it
Simply amazing... Philip's imagination knows no bounds!
হাঁটুপানির জলদস্যু
আহামরি তাকলাগানো গলপ এই সংকলনে নেই, কিনতু পরায় পরতিটি গলপে একটা নতুন চিনতার বীজ আছে। ফিলিপ কে ডিকের বেশির ভাগ গলপই এমন, ঘটনার ঘনঘটার বদলে পাঠকের মনের মধযে গলপের শুরু থেকে শেষ পরযনত একটা নতুন চিনতা রোপণ করে যাওয়াই সেখানে মুখয। পড়তে দারুণ লাগলো।

রোয়াল ডালের সঙগে ফিল ডিকের লেখার ধরনে খানিকটা মিল আছে মনে হলো, যদিও রোয়াল ডালের গলপগুলোতে সাসপেনস আরো জোরালো, আর ডাল দযনুমাঁতে মনোযোগী, যেখানে ডিক গলপের শেষ লাইনে পাঠকের মনের দরজায় দারুণ এক ঘা বসিয়ে দিতে পারঙগম (সতযজিৎ রায়ের "ফরিৎস" গলপটা যারা পড়েছেন, তারা
...more
J.
Jun 29, 2014 J. rated it liked it
Shelves: to-be-continued
So I certainly think Dick is one of the great sci-fi writers, but this collection of early stories definitely shows it's earliness. Nothing is quite as polished as you'd like (although that's pretty standard for Dick, I guess.) When it boils down to it, there just weren't that many great stories here.

Included:

Stability - 3 stars - It's sort of ironic (prescient?) that Dick's first story is what it is: time travel and confusion.

Roog - 2 stars - I know this is a beloved story, but it's never done
...more
Ali Çetinbudaklar
Bu kitap "bir insan 7'sinde ne ise 70'inde de odur" sözünü kanıtlar gibi. Okuduğunuz bütün Dick kitaplarını hatırlayın, hepsini hatırlmasanız da olur. Genel hatlarını getirin aklınıza, sonlardaki falsoları hatırlayın, paranoyak/psikoz/şizofren, artık ne derseniz diyin, o karakterleri düşünün, yarattığı dünyaları baskıcı/totaliter/7/24 insan davranışlarını gözetim altında tutan bir üst yönetime tabi tuttuğunu anımsayın. İşte bunların hepsi bu kitapta genç Dick tarafından ham bir şekilde önümüze s ...more
Ben Loory
Sep 06, 2009 Ben Loory rated it really liked it
there are more great ideas in this one book of stories than there are in most writers' complete works. and some of the stories, "beyond lies the wub," for instance, are absolutely perfect pkd. but the vast majority of them sort of bore me, and that's something considering what a huge fan i am. perhaps because they're from so early in his career, they still feel too science-fictional, too pulpy. he hasn't yet progressed to questioning reality itself, hasn't gotten into religion and madness. so, f ...more
Warren
Jan 20, 2009 Warren rated it really liked it
A fun collection of short stories (seemingly presented in the order they were written? i should double check that this held true throughout edit: apparently that was the idea of this series of collections. although they later abandoned the idea).

I picked this up for a quick introduction to the legendary author's work. I was suprised by the general lack of hard science, and the heavy focus on war (critical).

LIGHT SPOILERS:
My favories were the first and final stories. the first, Stability, for be
...more
Jean-François Lisée
Jan 27, 2016 Jean-François Lisée rated it really liked it
J'ai décidé de lire tout Phillip K. Dick. Ce premier recueil de nouvelles est à la hauteur de mes attentes. Dick a une pensée non-linéaire, anti-conservatrice, cherchant dans chaque situation l'élément qui détonne, qui étonne. Un libre penseur déployant son talent sur le canevas de la science-fiction.
Ces premiers textes sont empreints de l'esprit de la guerre froide alors en cours. J'ai hâte de lire la suite...
Ümit
İçinde belki de bir tane bile vasat öykü bulunmayan bir külliyatın ilk halkası, ilk cildi. Daha 20'li yaşlarında bile dehanın gelişi yavaştan belli ediyormuş kendisini. Pek çok öykü fikirsel anlamda harika yenilikler ve yaratıcılıklar barındırıyor. Her şeyiyle müthiş.

PKD'nin bu öykülerinin Türkçe olarak -geç de olsa- yayınlanıyor olması bizler için bir nimet, ancak yayıncı Büyülü Fener'in dikkat etmesi husular var; dizgi, imlâ ve çeviri hataları, bilhassa da baştan sona çok ucuz bir görüntü serg
...more
Warren Watts
Aug 28, 2012 Warren Watts rated it really liked it
An entertaining collection of some of Mr. Dick's short stories.

I see a lot of similarities between his style and that of Ray Bradbury. Philip K. Dick didn't have that magical way with words or the insight into what makes us human that Bradbury did, but his stories always make me think. I interpret the message behind his stories to be one of hope or impending disaster for humanity/society.

Speculation is a key part of a good science fiction tale, and Philip K. Dick was really good at wrapping a
...more
Kris
Mar 01, 2009 Kris rated it really liked it
A fantastic collection of sci-fi tales by Phillip K. Dick. I can see why they made a movie out of "Paycheck" and his other stories have the potential of being translated to the big screen. Main of his stories have dark twists and a bleak outlook for the fate of humankind. Some do have glimmers of humor and hope, like "The Short Happy Life Of The Brown Oxford."
Egemen Memçe
Jul 08, 2014 Egemen Memçe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Viva la PKD!

"Kurşunumsu onları gemiye götürdü. 'Tarihin amacı tüm dünyanın birleşmesidir. Aileden kabileye, kent devletten ulusa ve yarıküreye, yönelim her zaman birleşmeye doğrudur. Şimdi yarıküreler birleşecek ve...'
Taylor onu dinlemeyi bırakıp Tünel'e doğru baktı. Mary orada yüzeyin altındaydı. Tünel açılana kadar onu göremeyecek olsa da karısını orada bırakmaktan nefret ediyordu. Ama sonra omzunu silkip diğerlerine katıldı.
Eski düşmanların bu küçük karışımı iyi bir örnekti, Mary ve insanl
...more
Pölly
Apr 09, 2013 Pölly rated it liked it
The collection I read was titled Beyond Lies the Wub, and the title story was a "you are what you eat" warning on extra terrestrial food. The Brown Oxford is a love story between animated shoes. Overall the stories were all like that, cute and punchy and the literary equivalent of Plan 9 From Outer Space.
oguz kaan
Dec 05, 2015 oguz kaan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, short-stories
Bilimkurgu şöleni... Henüz okumadın mı? Beklemen bile hata.
Kaan
Oct 27, 2015 Kaan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
İçinde 25 hikaye var yanlış saymadıysam. 5 tanesi kötü; 10 tanesi okuyabilir diyelim, geri kalan 5 tane iyi, 5 tanesi mükemmel. Bunun sadece PKD'nin ilk dönem işleri olduğunu anımsarsak (1951-52) yılları arasında yazdıkları ikinci ciltte coşar bu adam. Beklediğimi aldım.
Brett Dunst
Feb 23, 2013 Brett Dunst rated it it was amazing
Each short story is so good that I wanted them all to be full-size novels, and I was always so disappointed when one would end.

Remind me never to read any of the other four books in this series because it'll just be heartache and tears all the way through.
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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
More about Philip K. Dick...

Other Books in the Series

The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick (5 books)
  • The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick 2: We Can Remember it for You Wholesale
  • Second Variety and Other Classic Stories (The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick #3)
  • The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick, Volume 4: The Minority Report
  • The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick 5: The Eye of The Sibyl

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“I want to write about people I love, and put them into a fictional world spun out of my own mind, not the world we actually have, because the world we actually have does not meet my standards," Dick wrote of these stories. "In my writing I even question the universe; I wonder out loud if it is real, and I wonder out loud if all of us are real.” 6 likes
“Los que leemos ciencia ficción (ahora hablo como lector, no como escritor) lo hacemos porque nos gusta experimentar esta reacción en cadena de ideas que provoca en nuestras mentes algo que leemos, algo que comporta una nueva idea; por tanto, la mejor ciencia ficción tiende en último extremo a convertirse en una colaboración entre autor y lector en la que ambos crean... y disfrutan haciéndolo: el placer es el esencial y definitivo ingrediente de la ciencia ficción, al placer de descubrir la novedad.” 1 likes
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