Explosive Decompression Book Review

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>Isaac Asimov meets Charles Dickens with a dash of Jonathan Swift…

In a world that is a science experiment gone horrifyingly wrong, scientist Audrey Novak awakes from a centuries-long sleep to discover that her work has been used to create an appalling world. Aided by commoners, bots, and another refugee from 20th century America, Audrey takes on the power elites on Earth and on the Moon in a novel that is equal parts adventure, science gone haywire, and rollicking humor. ?
A sampling of acclaim for John L. Sheppard
“Sheppard’s characters pretend not to be funny, to not be emotional, to not need each other, when of course, they are and they do. There’s a clarity to the chaos, the restraint, the vulnerability Sheppard creates, something so human and essential you can’t help but turn the page.”
–Entropy magazine
“…an easy affection for his characters and a sense of natural, unforced humor.”
–Booklist
“…You have a good time seeing someone have a bad time. It’s fun…”
–Padgett Powell
“…raw feeling and taut smart prose.”
–Sam Lipsyte
“The author grips you from the beginning, I couldn’t have put it down if I wanted.”
–Amazon reviewer

My Review:

I wasn’t sure what to think of Explosive Decompression when I first started reading it.  It is in your face and shocking, but still funny and sweet.  It’s definitely genre-defying.  Calling it science fiction would not be enough. Explosive Decompression is a cross between a hardboiled detective story from the 1940s and a Buck Rogers serial, if Sam Spade and/or Buck were a foulmouthed tiny female scientist.

There is violence, nudity, swearing and sex scenes (although not graphic). These are all things I am not a big fan of in the books I read, but somehow it all works. I was also impressed by how well Sheppard wrote for a female protagonist.  I really identified with the “girly” part of Audrey, who loves pink and keeping her hands clean and being cute (something has plagued me for many years 😉

My only complaint about the story (tongue-in-cheek) is its portrayal of a future Canadian government.  Could Canadians every be anything other than nice?

I highly recommend Explosion Decompression for lovers of science fiction, political satire, and the generally irreverent (ala Christopher Moore).  A must read!!!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are 100% my own.

About the Author:

explosive decompression book review

John L. Sheppard wrote the novels After the Jump, No Brass, No Ammo and Small Town Punk.

 

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The Other Side of Philip K Dick Book Review

Title: The Other Side of Philip K. Dick

Author: Maer Wilson Philip K Dick Maer Wilson

Genre: Memoir

Publisher: Amazon Digital Services

Release Date: August 9, 2016

Format: Kindle

Pages: 203 pages

About the Book:

“As a literary figure, Philip K. Dick is popularly perceived as a crazed, drug-addled mystic with a sinister Third Eye. Nothing could be further from the truth – the Phil I knew was a warm, humane, very funny man. Maer Wilson understands these truths far better than I, and The Other Side of Philip K. Dick casts a welcome shaft of daylight upon the real PKD, as opposed to the dark, distorted caricature Dick has become.” Paul M. Sammon, Author of Future Noir: The Making of Blade Runner

What is the truth behind the legend of Science Fiction great, Philip K. Dick?

In spring, 1972, Phil Dick moved to Fullerton, CA, where he met Theatre student Mary (Maer) Wilson. Amid marriage proposals, marathon talk-fests and a love for music and films, they forged a strong friendship that would last the rest of his life.

Wilson’s quirky, yet unflinchingly honest, memoir reveals a funny, compassionate and generous man. She captures an inside view of one of our literary greats – a brilliant writer who gave the world some of its most revered Science Fiction.

“I found this book engrossing and authentic – a truthful and serious account of the last part of Phil Dick’s life by someone who was a fundamental part of it and who has the skill to write about it. There is evident love and friendship in this book, but also honesty. This was the Phil Dick I knew.” James P. Blaylock, World Fantasy Award-Winning Author

AmazonMy Review:

Many years ago, after watching Blade Runner at the theater, I checked out the book on which it was based, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sleep from my local library.  When I was done reading that, I immediately went on to The Man in the High Castle, which solidified my love for alternative history fiction.

I thought I knew all the major works of Philip K Dick and which movies his works had inspired, but as I was reading this memoir I realized I only knew a few.  So I did some research and was amazed at how many works Dick either wrote or inspired:

The Man in the High Castle

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

A Scanner Darkly

Total Recall (based on I Can Remember It For You Wholesale)

Minority Report

Paycheck

The Adjustment Bureau (based on The Adjustment Team)

Let’s face it, Dick was brilliant.  And possibly a little crazy.

So I was thrilled to  read The Other Side of Philip K. Dick: A Tale of Two Friends.  Maer Wilson was friends with Dick for the last 10 years of his life, from 1972-1982.  Wilson doesn’t attempt to diagnose Dick, but simply to recount their friendship, chronologically.

At one point, Phil shows Maer some art prints he owns.  She admits to not knowing much about Art, but she is drawn to one painting by Hieronymous Bosch.  She says:

I doubt I fully understand the significance of either Bosch or Dali, but I don’t need to.  They are captivating pieces of art – odd, eccentric, with hidden meanings in bright colors – just like Phil.

Maer talks about the slightly crazy Phil, who married four times, had numerous girlfriends, and proposed to Maer so many times she lost count.  When he got worked up he would pace back and forth in his apartment and talk rapidly.

But  Wilson also recalls Thanksgiving of 1981, the year before he died,  when Phil came to Thanksgiving with her family.  He believed perfectly respectably.

When he was dealing with a normal situation, he was as normal as the rest of us. So which was the act? The nuttiness or the normalcy? Or both?

Maer Wilson doesn’t try to answer the question.  She leaves it open-ended.

I hope that you have liked the version of Phil I knew. And when you hear the bizarre myths and legends, perhaps you will smile, knowing there was more to the man than any one person can tell.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  I love biographies anyway, but to read a memoir of the time a close friend spent with the great author, really helped to humanize him.

I highly recommend this book for fans of science fiction, whether they have previously heard of Philip K Dick or not.

You can get your copy today at the links below:

Amazon Kindle – https://goo.gl/nQ12tW

Amazon Paperback – https://goo.gl/Nvx1H0

Barnes & Noble Paperback – http://goo.gl/GzEVxz

Barnes & Noble Nook – http://goo.gl/o92tkr
iTunes – https://goo.gl/LDArxc
Kobo – https://goo.gl/uax6Fm

Goodreads – https://goo.gl/WFdQZy

Smashwords – https://goo.gl/zbBGE9

I received a complimentary copy of this book for the purpose of review.  All opinions are 100% my own.

About the Author:

*** NaMaer Wilsonmed 2015 Fantasy Author of the Year (by Author Classifieds), Maer Wilson continues to delight readers with her Cozy Dark style, believable characters and dialogue, and plots with unexpected twists and turns.***

After a successful career being other people, and later teaching others the many tricks of that trade, Maer Wilson has decided to be herself for a while. Turns out she’s a writer. She’s always loved stories, especially fantasy, mystery and sci fi. Maer was born in the Year of the Dragon and has a dragon-themed room in her home, but sadly no dragons in the back yard. When she’s not writing, Maer plays online video games, teaches college and reads. Maer is a partner in Ellysian Press, a small publishing house. She also co-hosts the literary podcast MythBehaving. Maer lives in the high desert of Southern Nevada with her three dogs, a chihuahua and two poodles.

Maer’s books include the recent Apocalypta Z, as well as Relics, Portals, and Magics in the Modern Magics series. There are four prequel novelettes in the series – “Ghost Memory,” “Unwanted Ghost,” “Ghost Dancer” and “Wedding Ghost.” A recently released box set includes all the novelettes plus a new story, “Lost Ghost.” Maer recently contributed to, compiled and published the charity anthology, The Dark Dozen.

You can find all Maer’s books and novelettes at Amazon.

You can follow Maer at these links: 

Maer’s Website:  http://maerwilson.com/

The Other Side of Philip K. Dick Website: http://goo.gl/C4fWp8

Maer on Facebook:  https://goo.gl/KRgX2k

Maer on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/MaerWilson

Maer at Goodreads:  https://goo.gl/oFvUuZ

Maer at Pinterest:  http://goo.gl/BLweoV