Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Android's Dream” as Want to Read:
The Android's Dream
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Android's Dream (The Android's Dream #1)

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  9,044 ratings  ·  903 reviews
A human diplomat kills his alien counterpart. Earth is on the verge of war with a vastly superior alien race. A lone man races against time and a host of enemies to find the one object that can save our planet and our people from alien enslavement...

A sheep.

That's right, a sheep. And if you think that's the most surprising thing about this book, wait until you read Chapter
Hardcover, 396 pages
Published November 2006 by Tor Books (first published October 31st 2006)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Android's Dream, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Hao Ye The title is a reference to the PKD novel, yes. Incidentally, the title of the planned sequel (now delayed indefinitely), "The High Castle", is also a…moreThe title is a reference to the PKD novel, yes. Incidentally, the title of the planned sequel (now delayed indefinitely), "The High Castle", is also a reference to a PKD novel (specifically "The Man in the High Castle").(less)
Ready Player One by Ernest ClineOld Man's War by John ScalziThe Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsAnathem by Neal StephensonAltered Carbon by Richard K. Morgan
Best Science Fiction of the 21st Century
97th out of 356 books — 3,551 voters
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas AdamsThe Restaurant at the End of the Universe by Douglas AdamsLife, the Universe and Everything by Douglas AdamsSo Long, and Thanks for All the Fish by Douglas AdamsDirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency by Douglas Adams
Best Comedic Sci-Fi Books
21st out of 389 books — 789 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
A delightful romp of a space opera crossed with an espionage caper. For this entertainment we bid goodbye to the gloom of dystopias and dark post-apocalyptic struggles (with or without zombies) and return to a time when humans of merit have the agency to save the world from villains. The villains here include aliens with colonial exploitation of Earth in mind and bumbling, backstabbing bureaucrats vying for a piece of their action.

Instead of invading, the reptilian Nidu are buying up our suburbs
Although I've heard nothing but good things about John Scalzi's Old Man's War, I still haven't gotten around to reading it. Which, given how much sheer fun The Android's Dream is, makes me an idiot. Seriously. If you can put this book down after reading the first paragraph, you're a better person than me. It's got action. It's got adventure. It's got power politics and strange alien races. It's got the snappiest dialogue since Nick & Nora Charles set the banter highwater mark. Get it. Read i ...more
I got a fever, and the only prescription is more Scalzi.


Could have read The Ghost Brigades, could have read Fuzzy Nation, but if there is a book in the “to be read” stack whose title is an unmistakable Philip K. Dick reference, then this was clearly the right choice.

And it was a good choice

Like a book by PKD, John Scalzi’s The Android’s Dream packs a lot to think about into an economically written, tightly wound package. From the genetically designed electric blue sheep, to a variety of alien ra
3.5 stars or a bit more. It was a fun read, a conspiracy theory, SF adventure with lots of tongue in cheek humor, coincidences & odd aliens. Scalzi has a lot of fun poking sticks at legal systems, religions & diplomacy. There is a lot of computer work in it, including some very interesting points about data collection & privacy that is quite obviously pointed at our current system. An interesting read, although I doubt I'll ever read it again. Half the fun was not knowing what would ...more
4 Stars

My first John Scalzi book that I have read and I will now grab up his other books as I am now a fan. This is a tough review to write as by saying what I like about this book might make it seem like it less than it really is.

This is a funny book. It is filled with clever wit, funny parodies, and downright corny jokes. The jokes are all over this one and give it a great feel, without actually detracting from the science. This is a science fiction novel, a space opera, and a futuriistic cons
I wasn’t going to write a review of this book because I couldn’t really think of anything to say. It was great, funny, wrapped up with pretty much all eventualities covered. A typical John Scalzi book.

The recap: There’s been a diplomatic disaster. Two people are dead - human Dirk Moeller and Nidu trade negotiator Lars-win-Getag. The Nidu are an alien race inhabiting the worlds surrounding Earth. Known for their tempers and disregard for races and species other than their own, the Nidu make unwel
Aug 24, 2012 Eric rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Fans of humorous sci-fi
I'm glad I read this after reading John Scalzi's Redshirts. Had I read The Android's Dream first, I would have been slightly disappointed in Redshirts, as it wasn't as funny as The Android's Dream. And it wasn't just funny, either. It had memorable characters, great action sequences, and a plot filled with twists, turns and intergalactic political intrigue.

And to think I almost stopped reading this book in the first chapter when a character kills an alien dignitary with an anal device programme
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ben Babcock
Redshirts wasn't in stock Tuesday, and Kobo's DRM shenanigans made me loath to purchase the ebook despite my shiny new tablet. Fortunately, I had already borrowed The Android's Dream from the library. I try to pace myself between books by the same author, but in this case I suppose I'm making an exception. Not that I mind in John Scalzi's case.

The Android's Dream is what I would call clever but zany SF. It's about the race against time to find a breed of sheep to prevent a diplomatic investment
I always hate it when I don't like a book someone recommends to me, but after a chapter and a half I realized that a) I hadn't found a single character I liked yet, and b) the author and I don't share the same sense of humor at all. So, back to the library with this.
John Boettcher
The story starts off strong, which many of Scalzi's nooks do. That's no a bad mark against it, just stating a fact. The book gets off to a great start and you wonder where it is going to go from there. For those of you who haven't read this one yet, make sure you pay pretty close attention in the first parts of the book, as they will com back later in the story and tie everything together.

Let's see,negatives. There were some points in the book where it doesn't seem like everything matches up. P
The Flooze
**A little over three stars.**

“Dirk Moeller didn’t know if he could fart his way into a major diplomatic incident. But he was ready to find out.“

My introduction to Scalzi was Agent to the Stars. The curious pairing of a slick Hollywood agent with a gelatinous alien life form made for fascinating, funny reading. It also made me hate the man. You see, Agent to the Stars was written as a "practice book." Scalzi decided to try his hand at writing a novel simply to discover if he could create somethi
I listened to the one as an audio book read by Wil Wheaton. For me, Scalzi's books, read Wheaton are a win win combination. Wheaton has just the right voice, and does just the right tones and inflections to match Scalzi's odd humor.

The title of this book comes from a genetically modified breed of sheep with bright blue wool. The name 'Androids Dream' is based on an obscure literary reference :)

This is a story of humorous interstellar politics, weird alien races, a human who is 20% sheep DNA, a b
Scalzi has this knack for conjuring up crazy SF scenarios, and then back filling through info-dumps to make them seem possible, or at least suspend disbelief for the duration of a read. The Android's Dream is as crazy as it gets. It starts with an assasin's killer fart and just goes on from there.

It is entertaining, quite so, and the mix of comedy, action and soliloquizes are just enough to keep one engaged. Of course somewhere midway until the end, I am just dumbfounded at where all these ideas
Aug 14, 2009 Anita rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of slightly twisted humor, Christopher Moore, Terry Pratchett, or Lee Martinez
This is a science fiction novel with a whole lot of political intrigue, comic book style action, and wry humor thrown in. It was so much fun to read! It's science fiction, not fantasy, but if you are a fan of slightly twisted humor, Christopher Moore, Terry Pratchett, or Lee Martinez, you might like this book.

The premise is that Earth is a newcomer to the intergalactic community and has touchy political relations with its biggest trading partner, the Nidu (they look like big lizards). Some secto
Christopher Sears
I've been trolling reading John Scalzi's blog Whatever for a while, and I figured I should get around to reading some of his fiction. I found The Android's Dream at a bookstore, and decided to pick it up.

The tone of the first half of the novel is erratic. There are elements of humor, a political thriller, one section that almost made me sick, and some shoot-em-up violence that goes into great detail. There is very little use of science fiction that is critical to the plot. At one point I thought
Not quite up to Scalzi's usual standards. Oh, it's a fun read, kind of The Moon is a Harsh Mistress meets Miles Vorkosigan, with all sorts of sly in-side jokes: Creek's initials, Sam's gender, the messaging by scent (expanded in Agent to the Stars), etc. Labyrinthine plot(s).

What's not to like? Scalzi let his send up of organized religion in general (and L. Ron Hubbard's Church of Scientology in particular) derail the story several times. It distracted from the flow.

The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress
Manual para crear un conflicto interestelar capaz de aniquilar tu propia especie.
1. Asesina a un alto funcionario de tus pretendidamente aliados alienígenas a base de insultos olorosos. La coliflor, en este caso, ayuda.
2. Contrata a un grupo de asesinos para acabar con lo único que puede evitar una guerra.
3. Sorpréndete cando aparece el heroe.

Más cerca de El agente de las estrellas que de Las Brigadas Fantasma, el libro tiene elementos de los otros dos trabajos. Es una novela entretenida, a rat
Dec 09, 2008 Jack rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: sf
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Graeme Dunlop
I'm reading my way through Scalzi's back catalogue to see whether I like his earlier work. Looks like I do!

To complete an alien coronation ceremony, a very special sheep is required -- the Android's Dream. No other sheep will do. Unfortunately, there's a problem: they're all dead!

Troubleshooter Harry Creek is hired by his friend at the State Department to find an Android's Dream. But neither he nor his friend Ben understand what they're really getting into. After a violent encounter at a mall, t
Any book where the only significant female character is the damsel in distress, who is snarky enough to be readable but not self-sufficient enough to get past her role in the princess who needs to be saved trope, is going to be a hard sell to me. In fact, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have finished this book if I hadn't been on a 5 hour road-trip with no other un-listened to books on my audible account. It really did take 5 hours (half the book) for me to care enough to want to finish.

Listening to
Matt Pillsbury
The Android's Dream is a bizarre, hilarious take on formulaic espionage thrillers, taking the typical cast of politicians, cabinet officials, diplomats, mercenary thugs and sleazy lobbyists, and moving them into a future where humanity is a new member of an interstellar community of sentient species, and Earth is generally regarded as a minor backwater. While slightly unusual, it isn't the setting, nor the likable but familiar characters, that makes the book shine. Instead, it is the long info ...more
"Dirk Moeller didn't know if he could fart his way into a major diplomatic incident. But he was ready to find out."

Perhaps not as good of a first line as "Call me Ishmael", or "It was a pleasure to burn", or "I am a sick man, I am a spiteful man", or even "As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a giant insect", but it was good enough to catch me.

I first read this book about a year ago, and I must say, the only things I remembered about i
Joel Pearson
This book was fairly typical Scalzi faire - cleverly written, with witty protagonists who tend to use their wit to get out of situations more than anything else. Snappy, funny, poignant dialogue. Dramatic situations with alien races who are oddly similar to humans. It's got all the set pieces.

And, as with most of his other works, I loved it. Scalzi writes a certain style, and he does it very well, and there's not a ton of reasons to get away from success. I know this was early on for him, but m
This was my first Scalzi book. It had a pulp fiction feel that was elevated to the next level with humor and a complex (but not complicated) plot. I especially enjoyed Wil Wheaton's narration of this book. It's definitely one of the best narrations I've listen to so far on audible. I'll definitely be looking for more of Scalzi's pieces especially those narrated by Wil.
This is an early work, and it shows. But it's so relentlessly entertaining that it more than makes up for its missteps.

Scalzi has been accused of writing only characters that sound like himself. To some extent, it's a legitimate criticism. Most of his characters do, in fact, sound the same. But I really like his voice, so it doesn't particularly bother me. Here, too, we have a number of characters who have fairly similar styles (to the point that I was having trouble keeping a couple of them st
Ross Helford
This was a surprisingly enjoyable read. Why I say surprising is because a lot of books like this--witty tongue-in-cheek dialogue juxtaposed against a speculative backdrop (sci-fi, fantasy, horror)--are invariably enjoyable for a while, until the rather flimsy plotting make it hard to hold my interest. Not to pick on David Wong, but that's the writer who immediately comes to mind when I make this comparison. That's why I was pleasantly surprised that Scalzi was able to keep the story compelling a ...more
Strange, I would never call Scalzi a good writer and yet I generally like his novels. His work is filled with clichés and stereotypes, but he throws lots of ideas and humor in a story and knows how to keep the plot moving. I was never bored with The Android's Dream and looked forward to what was coming next. There were a few plot twists that kept me guessing. Recommended for sci fi readers looking for something entertaining and not too deep.
I am SO torn. On one hand, I greatly enjoyed most of this book, and was a bit sad when it was over. It's got an imaginative and unpredictable plot, and clever world-building. It's an interplanetary political thriller with a brilliant sense of humor. I laughed, and I kept turning pages, mostly eagerly.

On the other hand, two things are true about this book and I really, really wish one or the other wasn't. First, in a large cast, there are two female characters of any significance, and both are mo
M. Dobson
Jun 14, 2014 M. Dobson rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: science fiction readers and Mel Brook's Blazing Saddle fans
Recommended to M. by: who knows.
John Scalzi is a mainstay of science fiction and winner of many awards. His The Android's Dream is a modern classic. As you read it, you can imagine him and friends sharing a beer and laughingly coming up with impossible plots--the result would be The Android's Dream.There's no other way to explain this wild romp through improbable twists and great fun. He breaks all the rules with abandon and you'll love it.

Rule 1: introduce your main conflict within the first pages. WRONG, how about we first k
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
  • Spell or High Water (Magic 2.0, #2)
  • Halting State
  • Calculating God
  • Little Fuzzy (Fuzzy Sapiens, #1)
  • METAtropolis: Cascadia
  • The Automatic Detective
  • The Sheriff of Yrnameer
  • Ragamuffin (Xenowealth, #2)
  • Blind Lake
  • Dimension of Miracles (Dimension of Miracles #1)
  • Captain Vorpatril's Alliance (Vorkosigan Saga, #15)
  • Caliban's War (Expanse, #2)
  • Sun of Suns (Virga, #1)
  • Firebird (Alex Benedict, #6)
  • Thirteen (Th1rte3n)
John Scalzi, having declared his absolute boredom with biographies, disappeared in a puff of glitter and lilac scent.

(If you want to contact John, using the mail function here is a really bad way to do it. Go to his site and use the contact information you find there.)
More about John Scalzi...

Other Books in the Series

The Android's Dream (2 books)
  • The High Castle
Old Man's War (Old Man's War, #1) Redshirts The Ghost Brigades (Old Man's War, #2) The Last Colony (Old Man's War #3) Lock In

Share This Book

“Dirk Moeller didn’t know if he could fart his way into a major diplomatic incident. But he was ready to find out.” 3 likes
“You have to eliminate the low-hanging targets first, on the off chance you were dealing with morons.” 2 likes
More quotes…