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Mr. Spaceship

3.50  ·  Rating Details  ·  814 Ratings  ·  60 Reviews
A human brain-controlled spacecraft would mean mechanical perfection. This was accomplished, and something unforeseen: a strange entity called . . . Mr. Spaceship
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1953)
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Peter Derk
Apr 23, 2014 Peter Derk rated it liked it
Philip K. Dick.

The Pluses:
-Tons of great ideas.
-Still mined for movies on the regular.
-One of the better beards.

The Minuses:
-Prose a little weak.
-Dialogue downright tough.

I drove to PKD's grave not that long ago. It's an hour, maybe 90 minutes from my house. I took my brother's car because my own car wouldn't make it. Or, even worse, would make it and then not make it back, leaving me stranded in eastern Colorado where I'd have to find a new life either farming or working at the Dairy Queen. THE
Apr 27, 2012 Michael rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: SF Fans
This is one of those stories that is written in such a way that, although it seems simple, it captures your imagination right away. Not a lot of detail or description is necessary, because you fill them in yourself as you read; a sign that the storyteller is a true master.

The setting is an undetermined point in the future. Earth has made contact with aliens on a planet orbiting the nearby Proxima Centauri. However, these aliens are not friendly, and mankind is soon at war. We find we are at a di
Very nice short story, well paced and dealing with interesting themes, but the ending kinda threw me off. I didn't expect PKD to pull the cheesy card on us, but he did! While I would have prefered a more ambiguous and thought provoking conclusion to the story, being totally surprised was refreshing. Yay for happy endings and second chances... I guess!
Mike Walmsley
Creates a powerful and emotive image in the mind, but is spoiled by a forced final act. A book which might have been better without explanation.
Jul 06, 2012 John rated it liked it
Earth is at the losing end of a war with an alien race, called Yuks, who are able traverse the universe without spaceships. To turn tides, Earth's military engineer Kramer devices a method of installing a human brain into a man made mechanical spaceship.

Professor Thomas, who is in the declining years of his life, volunteers to transplant his brain into the spaceship and to strike at the emeny. However, after brain transplant, Professor Thomas kidnaps Kramer and Kramer's ex-wife Dolores.

Instead o
Erik Angle
Jan 11, 2014 Erik Angle rated it it was amazing
Pretty early on you can guess where the central premise of the story is headed, and I was happy to be along for the ride...then Philip K. Dick really surprised me by getting the twist out of the way early and moving into territory that I had failed to foresee. The social commentary was very interesting (tho I have the bias of already agreeing with the message), and I appreciated the usage of the human-brain-in-a-robot-body schtick in a new, non-humanoid context.

I reserve 5-star status not just f
Aug 04, 2015 Venky rated it liked it
Shelves: bibliocase
Mankind and outer space are at a constant and embittered war and as a result of superior technology and artificial intelligence the beings from Proxima Centauri are close to bringing the earthlings down to their knees. Since the ships of Mother Earth relying on a mechanical control termed Johnson's Control are being shot to submission by thought triggered space mines, a radical solution needs to be found, and found quickly.

The ideal man to devise a solution is the intelligent Kramer, a divorced
Apr 15, 2015 Pants rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Well was that weird.

The writing was way too simple and basic, and I though it was too short- many of the things mentioned there would have been super cool to read more in depth about and it would even make a pretty cool short novel.

Also some things didnt make much sense. Even if you ignore literally everything we know about the brain and just roll with the cringy non-existence science, I couldnt understand how someone can say they were so super close to a teacher that they spent so much time i
Scott Harris
Jun 21, 2012 Scott Harris rated it really liked it
One of Dick's short stories, Mr. Spaceship is a fitting account of the idea of merging man and machine, which has subsequently reoccurred in various science fiction pieces. In this case, it is an observation about the extension of the human lifespan and the god-like status accorded to one in charge of significant technology. Lots of interesting themes but the ending is a little underdeveloped
"Open the pod bay door, Hal."
"I can't do that Dave."

Kinda like that, but kinda not. OK, not very much at all, just one scene reminded me of 2001.

Interesting, but (probably due space limitations; ha, get it? I made a pun), a bit of a weak ending. Readable, with a modicum of the PKD wit to boot.
Apr 03, 2014 M0rningstar rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
The writing is so bad that I cannot finish this. Reads like something thrown together by a disinterested high school student for English class.
Jan 09, 2013 torque rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Seemed it was written by a teenager. Thin plot, poor conversations. Important decisions of war are made in spur of the moment.
B.C. Young
It's a good story, but the ending is weak. I get the metaphorical context, but I just didn't find it satisfying.
Josh Elam
Nov 12, 2013 Josh Elam rated it it was ok
Loved it up until the end.
I love PKD. But this one... not loveable.

Pretty interesting idea, though not especially well executed, and with an absolutely awful ending. Short, worth reading (or listening to, in my case), but seriously one of the most disappointing endings from a beloved author. I'd almost give it two stars but it's Mr. Dick, after all, and the concept carries some weight.
Emrullah Koyunlu
Dec 12, 2015 Emrullah Koyunlu rated it really liked it
I can say that, with confidence, that I enjoyed the story. Characterization appealed my tastes, and it felt multiple dimensional. While last minute Noah parallelization pushed the envelope a bit, it hadn't detracted too much from the story. Overall, I recommend reading it.
Rachel Ann
Apr 06, 2014 Rachel Ann rated it liked it
As a neuroscientist, it was hard not to grind my teeth in frustration at the science. But once I got over that, the extended didactic passages and plot holes served as more legitimate reasons for annoyance. Still, an interesting idea.
Claire Gilligan
Oct 13, 2014 Claire Gilligan rated it really liked it
Shelves: sff
A fun golden age short story, exploring an idea I haven't seen elsewhere--pleasantly characterized, well told, and delightfully brief. 10/10 would read again. :)
Jan 01, 2016 Jerry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short but sweet

One that I had missed by one of the masters of science fiction. Really glad I stumbled onto it. Classic !!!
Jul 18, 2016 Pilla rated it really liked it
Not as paranoid as Dick usually is. A good space story, with a human brain in a spaceship, in order to be a weapon.
Dione Basseri
Jul 29, 2016 Dione Basseri rated it it was amazing
Kind of funny, actually. An infirm professor is given the opportunity to become the harvested mind of a new type of spacecraft, and what does he do once he's installed and turned on? BOOK IT, MAN. I mean, what else would you do if you spent your life growing older and more brittle, and then finally being given the entire universe to explore? Fairly inspirational. I'm glad it didn't go to a grim place, where the mind was trapped. Hell, if I had this chance, I'd take it, too.

This story is in the p
Chris Aldridge
Sep 18, 2015 Chris Aldridge rated it really liked it
To respond to war with aliens they ask an old professor to help upgrade a spaceship.

4 stars 80%

Daniel Hill
Dec 24, 2014 Daniel Hill rated it really liked it
Fantastic little short story. Well worth seeking out as a precursor to much of the 21st Century space operas.
Dan Oldermusicgeek
Feb 04, 2016 Dan Oldermusicgeek rated it liked it
Definitely not one of his better works. Too many literary gymnastics pulled to make this work.
Jun 24, 2012 Anna rated it really liked it
I've recently read a bunch of Philip K. Dick's short stories and love how, although they are all dealing with similar situations (cold war turned into hot war, terra uninhabitable due to radiation, underground factories, robot wars, humans forced to live underground; OR interstellar wars (Terra-Centauri)/other interstellar situations), they still can't be compared to each other, they still differ enough to be enjoyed one after another (without getting bored by repetition).

Sparks ideas about war
Jay Dee
Feb 12, 2016 Jay Dee rated it liked it
Great idea, but feels like it was written in such a rush.
Aug 09, 2015 Anand rated it it was ok
Not my favorite PKD book, didn't really see the point
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Listened to a libravox recording; nice but dated.
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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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