Surprise! Another book to add to the pile of time travel literature.
This is only my second Philip K. Dick, and the first was (predictably) Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? I feel as though I want to read more Philip K. Dick, and also as though I never want to read Philip K. Dick again. Is that normal?
Here’s the thing with Dick: his books are twisted and intriguing and uncomfortable, which makes them great, but also makes them a hostile environment for readers. The Martian Time-Slip is especially uncomfortable, because it boils down to Dick waxing poetic on his theories re: mental illness / autism / schizophrenia. Because he was writing this in the sixties, his theories are obviously completely wrong – and while they’re interesting in some places, they’re cringe-worthy in others. You also have to keep in mind that Philip K. Dick wrote 44 novels and 121 short stories between the ages of 22 and 53, which is a really short amount of time to churn out such sheer volume. I don’t want to be sacrilegious, but some of it’s just sloppy.
Anyway, the plot of the novel is that a businessman on Mars gets his hands on an autistic kid, who he’s convinced sees time differently than “normal” people and can therefore see the future. With a little wheedling and a little wheeling and dealing, he tries to use this future-telling for his own profit – with, of course, disastrous results.