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Ubik

4.1  ·  Rating details ·  65,792 Ratings  ·  3,401 Reviews
Glen Runciter is dead. Or is everybody else? Someone died in an explosion orchestrated by Runciter's business competitors. And, indeed, it's the kingly Runciter whose funeral is scheduled in Des Moines. But in the meantime, his mourning employees are receiving bewildering—and sometimes scatological—messages from their boss. And the world around them is warping in ways that ...more
Paperback, 216 pages
Published December 3rd 1991 by Vintage (first published September 23rd 1969)
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RandomAnthony
Jan 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Phillip K Dick's Ubik flirts with perfection. I inhaled this novel over three days when one of my kids was sick and Christmas break was ending. I started the book on the couch during a Mythbusters marathon. By page fifty I wanted to shut the door and leave my kids to forage in the refrigerator for Gatorade and string cheese. And on Sunday night, when I closed the book, I felt satisfied and excited with a novel in a way that doesn't happen much. Ubik is fun, smart, and exhilarating.

Ok, let me
...more
Lyn
Oct 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
I began reading some of Philip K. Dick’s short stories and quickly became hooked. His style and imagination have left an indelible mark on science fiction since and his influence is unmistakable. His novels are genius, and Ubik may be the best one I have read yet.

Telling an inventive sci-fi tale that is entertaining on its surface, this is also a theological metaphor that keeps the reader thinking and trying to figure out what in the world PKD is getting at. His brilliance is compelling and his
...more
Darwin8u
Jul 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013, scifi, fiction, american
“I am Ubik. Before the universe was, I am.
Philip K. Dick, Ubik

description

I made the suns. I made the worlds. I created the lives and the places they inhabit; I move them here, I put them there. They go as I say, then do as I tell them. I am the word and my name is never spoken, the name which no one knows. I am called Ubik, but that is not my name. I am. I shall always be.”
― Philip K. Dick, Ubik

description

Friends, this wild review is 100% PKD approved. Ubik the review is only seconds away! Ubik the review is easy-t
...more
Cecily
A clever, original and often very funny sci-fi story. It is about psychic power battles, the nature of death, alternative reality and changing the past. Or not.

FUN, FUN, FUN - the clothes
It was published in 1969 and starts off in a sufficiently plausible but amusingly implausible 1992. In particular, the clothes take the flamboyance of the late '60s to extraordinary heights, for no obvious reason, other than fun. On the second page, we meet a man wearing "a tabby-fur blazer and pointed yellow sh
...more
Manny
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If you require a woman-friendly message that stars Roger Ailes... Trump's the answer!

Want to crush ISIS without sending more troops to
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Glenn Russell
Sep 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing

“He felt all at once like an ineffectual moth, fluttering at the windowpane of reality, dimly seeing it from outside.”
― Philip K. Dick, Ubik

Over-the-top zany madness, Philip K. Dick’s 1969 acclaimed work of science fiction opens in the year 1992, by which time humanity has colonized the Moon aka Luna and individuals having various psychic powers are commonplace, so much so some companies hire men and women (called “telepaths” or “precogs”) based on their power to predict the future and other com
...more
Fernando
Oct 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Ahora comprendo por qué Philip K. Dick es uno de los grandes dioses de la ciencia ficción. Ubik no es un libro. Es toda una película. Todo en él se lee como si fuera un perfecto guión cinematográfico. Me atrevería a decir que Ubik es como si en una coctelera mezcláramos las películas The Matrix, Minority Report e Inception, y lo más gracioso es que Minority Report ¡fue también un libro escrito por Dick!
Joe Chip es el protagonista principal de esta historia que lo tiene todo en lo que a ciencia f
...more
Kevin Ansbro
Aug 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Readers who like their sci fi laced with deadpan humour.
.
.
"He felt all at once like an ineffectual moth, fluttering at the windowpane of reality, dimly seeing it from the outside."
-Philip K Dick

"A fool and his poscreds are soon parted."
-Kevin Ansbro

Please allow me to preface my review by stating that sci-fi is not normally my thang. Aside from Asimov, when I was a teenager, I've preferred to watch it, and write it, rather than read it. In fact, were it not for Obi-Wan Cecily's recommendation, I might have erroneously imagined Philip K Dick to ha
...more
Stuart
It took me 40 years to get around to it, but I finally dived into PKD's reality-bending novels over the last two years, and this one is excellent. UBIK is much stranger and more darkly humorous than Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. It starts out with a very far-fetched future world set in 1992, and the plot revolves around telepaths, inertials, prudence organizations, snarky coin-operated household appliances, "cold-pac" half-life moratoriums, crazily excessive clothing styles, mysterious li ...more
Tara
Jul 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“He felt all at once like an ineffectual moth, fluttering at the windowpane of reality, dimly seeing it from outside.”

Ubik is a fun, fascinating, and often surprisingly philosophical look at the nature of reality and the role of our perception thereof. PKD also delves masterfully, cleverly, and even quite exuberantly, into some of his other favorite food for thought, which in this case includes entropy, alienation, and the question of (in)sanity, to name but a few. All the while, the story pla
...more
Apatt
May 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mind blown!

Philip K. Dick is generally very welled loved by the sf readership, nobody writes quite like him. His novels tend to mess with my head and leave me WTF-ing, wondering where I am and what is going on. In a good way of course.

It is difficult for me to choose a Dick favorite, I have never read anything by him that I did not like. Still, if I must choose one I would choose Ubik. The different layers of reality remind me of The Matrix, Inception and Ursula Le Guin's The Lathe of Heaven. No
...more
Eva
Nov 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Once again I bow to the genius that is Philip K. Dick.. I'm envious of his madness really because it's so wonderfully controlled. I really do think that he was born in the wrong time, or maybe he's visiting from the future, or maybe he's an alien. Needless to say I loved the book. Packed full of adventure, original as always and a thoroughly enjoyable experience.
Joey Woolfardis
This review can be found on Amaranthine Reads.

I am Ubik. Before the universe was, I am. I made the suns. I made the worlds. I created the lives and the places they inhabit; I move them here, I put them there. They go as I say, then do as I tell them. I am the word and my name is never spoken, the name which no one knows. I am called Ubik, but that is not my name. I am. I shall always be.

Three stars, but also four stars, and two stars, and five stars and only one.

I've not read much sci-fi and
...more
Marvin
Nov 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
This is one of Philip K. Dick's strangest novels. Those who have read his novels know that is saying a lot. But there were a few surprises for me. This is one of his wittiest novels. There are a lot of clever moments especially at the beginning. Yet sooner or later Dick will take you into the weird dimension and he does it with finesse. I do not have the patience to describe the plot. Even the Goodreads description at the top is lacking. But all the necessary ingredients... frustrated protagonis ...more
Alex
Oct 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
"Our own homegrown Borges" is how Ursula Le Guin describes Philip K. Dick, because they both use writing to question the nature of reality. Both writers assume that everything is up for debate: the story, the page it's written on, the author writing it.

Dick is my favorite of the pack of mid-century science fiction writers. (The "Big Three" of Heinlein, Asimov and Clarke, plus Bradbury, Le Guin and him.) He's best known as a short story writer; of his 44 novels, The Man in the High Castle is his
...more
lorinbocol
Jul 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: all-american
INSERT COIN FOR SENSE
ero un'inerziale e non lo sapevo. neutralizzavo preventivamente un'attività psi, e quel che è peggio lo facevo in assenza di talento specifico. voglio dire, dopo tre giorni di lettura tipo frappè lisergico, son qui a chiedermi come ubik ho fatto a non aver mai frequentato questo libro. prevenzione anti-fantascienza, direi, più forte delle sollecitazioni a rilascio potenziale da parte di telepati vicini. by the way - se anche i suoi esegeti concordano che dick scrive maluccio
...more
Robin (Bridge Four)
2.5 Half-Life Stars

Buddy Read with Gavin the Great at BB&B

Ubik is a wonder, it is anything and everything you could ever need. It can taste like fresh brewed coffee, or a nice hoppy beer, or be used as salad dressing. It can relieve a headache or stomach ache or clean household items. It slices and It dices with a never dulling edge, plus makes your hair shine like never before. It will help you sleep, stops perspiration, freshens breath and will uplift your breasts. But wait there’s more…..
...more
Gavin
Mar 07, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
I've been meaning to try one of Dick's sci-fi books for years because I have enjoyed a lot of his books and novellas that got adapted into movies. Blade Runner, Minority Report, and Total Recall are all great movies! I decided to go with Ubik as my first try of Philip.K.Dick's novels. I went into this book with manageable expectations as I generally fare poorly with the classics of any genre and at nearly 50 years old I think we can rate Ubik as a classic nowadays! It was a good thing I had low ...more
Brian
I have one all-time favorite movie (aside from adaptions of Hamlet): The Matrix. I novelized this movie before writing my own novel (and am still processing). I asked Goodreads if they knew of any books like this movie, and I received two suggestions by P.K. Dick, “Ubik,” and “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?”

For some time this year I left the “pleasures” of reading to pursue my dreams of writing. I set out a plan: read literary magazines and short stories, write literary stories and get
...more
Abram Dorrough
Mar 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While I was reading this book, a bomb exploded in my apartment, tearing my paperback copy of Ubik to pieces. The book had been badly burned and found itself in tatters. After placing it into a protective cooler packed with solid state carbon dioxide, I rushed to take it to a local book-shop (located next to the morgue) to see if there was any hope of putting the pages back together, or at least what was left of them, to be able to commune with it — my cherished, fragile half-book — every once in ...more
Kua
Feb 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Come è possibile che Philip K. Dick sia stato nascosto ai miei occhi fino ad oggi? E io, in che parte dell'universo ho vissuto per non aver mai letto niente di suo? Sono allibita, sono sconcertata dalla mia ignoranza. Vergogna!
Certo che per avere delle paranoie simili, tanto bene Philip non doveva stare. Perchè un conto è non sapere se si è vivi o morti e va bè uno non lo sa e continua per la sua strada, un altro è non sapere che si è morti ma sospettarlo fortemente (brividi)... Questo romanzo
...more
Brad
Apr 24, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: sci-fi, speculative
The concept behind Ubik is as brilliant as any of Philip K. Dick's ideas.

Glen Runciter is dead, or maybe he's not. All the people who work for him in his anti-paranormal "Prudence Organization" are dead, or maybe they're not. But even if they're dead (having been attacked by the big Kahuna of paranormal activity), they're being kept in half-life at a Swiss cryogenic facility where they may now be under attack from a soul predator who sucks the vitality out of their half-life, devouring them to
...more
Kemper
Sep 06, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 100, sci-fi, spooky-powers
I don't know why but I always get a huge kick out of reading an older sci-fi story that was set in the near future, but it's a date I've lived through. In 2001, I'd just randomly shout, "Kubrick and Clarke were wrong,! We don't have bases on the moon! Those fools!" This is another one where Phil didn't exactly nail 1992 writing in 1969, but it's still a pretty good story.

In this 1992, there are people with psionic powers like telepathy or precognition that are used for industrial sabotage, and r
...more
Carmine
La relatività della vita

"Prima che l'universo fosse, io ero."

Dick, mai come in questo romanzo, destruttura i dogmi che noi attribuiamo al contesto reale; sbriciola ogni nostra certezza e ci espone a un'implacabile vulnerabilità che si esplica in una sequela di quesiti senza risoluzione né risposte soddisfacenti.
Particolarmente indovinata la triplice interpretazione di Ubik, ognuna interessante per i molteplici spunti che si possono ricavare: Ubik è l'incarnazione del consumismo, cioè di quel p
...more
Monica
I'm going to echo one of the reviews I read earlier. What just happened?!? Apparently reality is simply a matter of perspective...

I love it when the classics are still so incredibly fascinating! This one definitely stands up to the test of time. For a better review, why reinvent the wheel when Alex has already written perfection.

4+ Stars

Listened to the audio book. Luke Daniels was excellent
Dagio_maya
Aug 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fanta, americana, 5-stelle
Una sostanza sfuggente.


E’ solo il secondo libro che leggo di Dick ma mi sono ritrovata fra le mani un filo e non posso ignorarlo.
In entrambe le letture (l’altra era “Tempo fuori luogo” del 1959, mentre “Ubik” è stato pubblicato esattamente dieci anni dopo) ho trovato:

▄ Un protagonista che vive un disagio, un fallimento esistenziale;

▄ La quotidianità che si spezza all’improvviso. Qualcosa che è sia imprevisto sia di primo acchito invisibile (all’occhio e alla coscienza) viene a minare un equilib
...more
Penny
This book is pure genius! Even when I was as confused as Joe Chip about what in the hell was really going on, I loved every second of it. The concept behind this novel is brilliant. We spend a great deal of it unsure of what is real and what isn't and some of the ideas Dick manages to throw in as the story progresses had me grinning and shaking my head at the crazy logic of it all.

One of my favourites was the question of whether or not you can out-random a guy who had precogs tell him your every
...more
Randy
Jun 14, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: re-read
Hey, what happened to my review? It was here recently but now seems to have vanished. Maybe it died in a bomb blast on the moon. Or maybe it crawled, weakened and frightened, into my closet in the middle of the night to die. Or maybe it's not dead at all. Maybe I'm dead, and my review is alive, trying to reach me through various apparitions in what I perceive to be reality. Or maybe it's all different.

One thing's for sure: I'm going to need a lot of Ubik.
R * A Reader Obsessed *
Total mind fuck, but an interesting one at that.
Jan-Maat
This book is somewhere between the insane and the devilish with a certified Philip K. Dick twist at the end. Moderately futuristic setting, with fabulous clothes for all. During reading you get to learn that Ubik is a terribly useful product (view spoiler). Read it if you dare to be flummoxed.
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12,848 followers
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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“He felt all at once like an ineffectual moth, fluttering at the windowpane of reality, dimly seeing it from outside.” 52 likes
“I am Ubik. Before the universe was, I am. I made the suns. I made the worlds. I created the lives and the places they inhabit; I move them here, I put them there. They go as I say, then do as I tell them. I am the word and my name is never spoken, the name which no one knows. I am called Ubik, but that is not my name. I am. I shall always be.” 48 likes
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