Saturday, December 1, 2012

VALIS by Philip K. Dick, The Library of America

1 of 5 stars

I tried really hard to read this book but when you find yourself skimming paragraphs and checking for the location of the end of the chapter you know it's a lost cause. The only bright spot for me was that I did enjoy the play between the author and Horselover Fat, but that was it.

The story is about four people trying to understand 'Why' and 'God.' Apparently later in the book a bit of a story appears but I didn't get that far. If you have read any of my postings you know I believe in the importance of 'a story' in a story. There was no story here. I'll explain.

There are over seven billion people on this earth. Every single one of them has their own ideas about god and their and our purpose in life. You'll find many similarities in the beliefs of those seven billion people but if you get down to it and ask each one the specifics of their beliefs you will find individual thoughts. Horselover Fat may be smarter than you or I. He may be more educated than you or I. But he is no better informed about God than you or I. We all have our own ideas.

“... How do you break the news to someone that his brains are fried?” the author asks. He asks this in relation to Fat and then proceeds to explain why that question does not apply to Fat. The author does go about proving and documenting Fat's insanity and since Fat is the author, then, why should we accept the reasoning of an insane man? I'm just asking. I don't have a ready made answer for you. For me, the author's brain is fried.

So why should I care about these characters and their ideas. I shouldn't and I don't.

George W. Parker