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Philip K. Dick: A Comics Biography

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One of the greatest writers in science fiction history, Philip K. Dick is mostly remembered for such works as Blade Runner, Minority Report, and Total Recall. His dark, fascinating work centered on alternate universes and shifting realities in worlds often governed by monopolistic corporations and authoritarian governments. His own life story seems a tussle with reality, c One of the greatest writers in science fiction history, Philip K. Dick is mostly remembered for such works as Blade Runner, Minority Report, and Total Recall. His dark, fascinating work centered on alternate universes and shifting realities in worlds often governed by monopolistic corporations and authoritarian governments. His own life story seems a tussle with reality, cycling through five marriages and becoming increasingly disjointed with fits of paranoia and hallucinations fueled by abuse of drugs meant to stabilize him. His dramatic story is presented unvarnished in this biography.


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One of the greatest writers in science fiction history, Philip K. Dick is mostly remembered for such works as Blade Runner, Minority Report, and Total Recall. His dark, fascinating work centered on alternate universes and shifting realities in worlds often governed by monopolistic corporations and authoritarian governments. His own life story seems a tussle with reality, c One of the greatest writers in science fiction history, Philip K. Dick is mostly remembered for such works as Blade Runner, Minority Report, and Total Recall. His dark, fascinating work centered on alternate universes and shifting realities in worlds often governed by monopolistic corporations and authoritarian governments. His own life story seems a tussle with reality, cycling through five marriages and becoming increasingly disjointed with fits of paranoia and hallucinations fueled by abuse of drugs meant to stabilize him. His dramatic story is presented unvarnished in this biography.

30 review for Philip K. Dick: A Comics Biography

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sam Quixote

    Opening with Philip K. Dick seeing early footage from Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner shortly before his death in 1982, Laurent Queyssi and Mauro Marchesi’s Philip K. Dick: A Comics Biography is a fine overview of one of the most original and notable writers of the 20th century. Dick had health troubles from birth, both physical and mental, exacerbated later in life by a heavy pill addiction that began to ensure his work rate remained high - he wrote five novels alone in 1964! But the drugs finally Opening with Philip K. Dick seeing early footage from Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner shortly before his death in 1982, Laurent Queyssi and Mauro Marchesi’s Philip K. Dick: A Comics Biography is a fine overview of one of the most original and notable writers of the 20th century. Dick had health troubles from birth, both physical and mental, exacerbated later in life by a heavy pill addiction that began to ensure his work rate remained high - he wrote five novels alone in 1964! But the drugs finally took over and began affecting his health until he went to rehab. His mental health though remained shaky until the end. Besides hallucinations about otherworldly beings speaking to him, he became paranoid, thinking the government was spying on him! Beyond the generic biographical route showing his rise to fame from writing short stories for sci-fi magazines to Hugo Award-winning novels like The Man in the High Castle, we learn about his penchant for brunettes, his many marriages and suicide attempts. There isn’t much insight in the latter though beyond one page where he tells his second wife that he was sexually molested as a child. So, was that true or was that another hallucination? In this regard, I didn’t find this book especially informative or enlightening. It’s not the most gripping of reads either which isn’t Queyssi/Marchesi’s fault as they’re just recounting the facts of Dick’s life. Dick was just another writer whose work was far more engrossing than their comparatively mundane life. If you just want a brief summary of Philip K. Dick’s life, this comics bio will do the trick but not if you’re looking for a deeper understanding of the writer and the man. Queyssi and Marchesi give us a quick and readable but very surface-level account of this sci-fi giant.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Chad

    Little one or two page peeks into Phillip K. Dick's life. The book almost ignores his literary impact. The Man in the High Castle gets a one line mention. None of his impact on culture is mentioned. Instead it focuses on how many times he was married and his mental instability. The storytelling is very disjointed and almost incoherent in places. Yes, you will get little moments in his life, but nothing beyond the surface and nothing that actually tells you a story of his life. I found myself sev Little one or two page peeks into Phillip K. Dick's life. The book almost ignores his literary impact. The Man in the High Castle gets a one line mention. None of his impact on culture is mentioned. Instead it focuses on how many times he was married and his mental instability. The storytelling is very disjointed and almost incoherent in places. Yes, you will get little moments in his life, but nothing beyond the surface and nothing that actually tells you a story of his life. I found myself severely disappointed and struggled to finish. Received a review copy from NBM and Netgalley. All thoughts are my own and in no way influenced by the aforementioned.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Stewart Tame

    The title says it all. Yes, this is a biography of Philip K. Dick. And yes, it's in comics form. The blurb on the front cover plays up the many Hollywood films that have been adapted from his stories. Fair enough. I think more people have seen those movies than have read his work, even if that work has been ill-represented by the films (I'm looking at you in particular, Total Recall.) The book even kicks off with Dick in Hollywood at a private screening hosted by Ridley Scott of a montage of scen The title says it all. Yes, this is a biography of Philip K. Dick. And yes, it's in comics form. The blurb on the front cover plays up the many Hollywood films that have been adapted from his stories. Fair enough. I think more people have seen those movies than have read his work, even if that work has been ill-represented by the films (I'm looking at you in particular, Total Recall.) The book even kicks off with Dick in Hollywood at a private screening hosted by Ridley Scott of a montage of scenes from the then upcoming movie Bladerunner to get his reaction. And later on we applaud his integrity in turning down a lucrative deal to write a novelization of the movie, preferring instead to re-release Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? with a movie tie-in cover. There's more to Dick than any movie will be able to show … While I enjoyed this book, especially the references to his stories and novels throughout--the page where he sprays his meds with a can of Ubik, for instance--it never really rises above novelty value. In a truly good comics biography, the emphasis should be on the second word of that phrase, not the first. If you're not already noddingly familiar with Dick’s life and work, it's difficult to say how much you're going to get out of his experiences in 1974, for instance. This book covers the basics, but there's a lot of nuance in other biographies that gets glossed over here. Those who are into Dick (Hi, Bryan!) will want to read this, but I’m not sure how much the casual reader and/or comics fan is likely to get out of it.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Peter Derk

    This one is just too disjointed. Little snippets from Dick’s life. It would seem he had some mental health issues, although a lot of that might be explained by what looks like some pretty serious meth use. I’m guessing the combo is pretty potent. On the plus, Dick just wrote a bunch of weird sci-fi (and, okay, engaged in some domestic abuse) as opposed to creating a…let’s call it a “reich.” I think the book tried to cover too much, and it just didn’t have the space. I visited Philip K Dick’s grave This one is just too disjointed. Little snippets from Dick’s life. It would seem he had some mental health issues, although a lot of that might be explained by what looks like some pretty serious meth use. I’m guessing the combo is pretty potent. On the plus, Dick just wrote a bunch of weird sci-fi (and, okay, engaged in some domestic abuse) as opposed to creating a…let’s call it a “reich.” I think the book tried to cover too much, and it just didn’t have the space. I visited Philip K Dick’s grave years ago. It was the first time I had a car that could make it a few hours, so I went for it. Okay, full disclosure, it was my brother’s car. I did a rubbing of the grave and put it in a ZINE! I made a zine. Maybe two issues. The only reader of which was ALSO my brother. PKD is buried in Fort Morgan, Colorado, next to his twin sister, who died in infancy. She was buried there early on, 5 or 6 weeks after her birth, and they share a headstone. This is where I’m having trouble putting things together. Should we try and solve a mystery!? Why are Philip and his twin, Jane, buried side-by-side in Fort Morgan CO, marked with a headstone with a cat on it? In the book, it’s explained that the twins were unhealthy, and by the time they got them to the hospital, Jane had died. However, in the book it appears they were at home when this happened. The likelihood that Jane would end up buried in Colorado seems low if events occurred as they appeared in the book. But it’s a reasonable fudge of the truth. It’s not really critical to know that this happened in the middle of cross-country travels, and the book doesn’t SPECIFICALLY say the Dicks were at home when all of this went down. Just seems unlikely, right? Philip’s Wikipedia page says that the twins were born 6 weeks premature. It doesn’t mention their location. According to a web page for a Philip K. Dick festival held in Fort Morgan, Jane died when the Dick parents were headed cross-country. Philip’s sister, Jane, died on the way, in approximately Fort Morgan(?) The Dicks would have been traveling from Chicago to San Francisco around early 1929, WAY before the interstate system existed, so I was curious whether this still worked out. It does! According to an old-ass map I found, it seems very plausible that if someone was driving from Chicago to San Francisco at that time, they’d pass through Fort Morgan. Another account says the Dicks were driving cross-country when the twins were born, and as a result they stayed a few weeks in Fort Morgan. The books DOES say that both twins were unhealthy, which may have something to do with why they purchased a headstone to bury them side by side. Perhaps the Dick parents expected Philip to pass as well. However, another article on a potentially disreputable web site (noted by the lime green text on dark background usually favored by UFO watch and white power websites) the Dick parents were from Colorado, dad from Cedarwood, mom from Greeley, and Fort Morgan was a “compromise site.” Mom IS from Greeley (hometown hero!), but I’m not sure how Fort Morgan is a compromise site between the two parts of CO. Fort Morgan and Cedarwood are almost directly north/south of each other, and Fort Morgan is east of Greeley, WAY closer to Greeley and nowhere near Cedarwood, really. It’s not in between the two, so a “compromise” location of Fort Morgan is very confusing, and I’m not buying that. So, after looking like 10 different places, it would appear: The Dicks were headed from Chicago to San Francisco for Dick’s dad to get a job. I would guess, based on some maps from the era, that they could make the trip inside of a week. The Dick twins were born 6 weeks premature, so that might explain why the Dicks were caught on the road in a small town on the eastern plains of Colorado. If both twins were premature and sick, this being 1928, it might have made sense for the parents to expect, after Jane’s passing, that Philip wouldn’t make it, so they made a nice headstone for both babies. Some Find a Grave research showed that Philip’s father and grandparents are in the Fort Morgan cemetery. Which means: Jane was buried there in 1929. Grandma Bessie was buried there in 1949. Grandpa William was buried there in 1954. Philip was buried there in 1982. So was it only chance that Jane was buried there? …it’s also possible that Edgar, PKD’s dad, had parents in the Fort Morgan area. Both of his parents are buried in Fort Morgan as well. However, I didn’t find any info on this. So it’s possible that the Dicks passed through Fort Morgan by chance, and it’s also possible they were headed that way anyway to stop with Edgar’s parents. Philip’s remains were taken to the grave site by his father, who died a few years after Philip and is buried in Fort Morgan as well. This leaves two mysteries: 1. Is the current tombstone original, or was it changed in the decades after Jane’s death? 2. What’s the deal with the wildcat symbol? Mystery 1: According to a picture caption in The Sun, the tombstone is probably original (though I can’t say that definitively). I was curious about whether a tombstone of this type would likely come from the 30’s, so I also looked through headstones in the Fort Morgan cemetery on Find A Grave from around 1930, and I found at least 2, Georgia Lee Adams and George W Akers (may they rest in peace) that do have some similarities in appearance. So it’s possible that there have been restorations of all three around a similar time, but it’s also plausible that these three are as originally created. However, Edgar Dick, Philip’s dad, who’s also buried in Fort Morgan, has a dog on his stone, and it looks very similar. Edgar having died a few years after Philip…unless he had his stone made in the same style? According to the aforementioned disreputable neon site, Edgar, Philip’s dad, made the tombstone and wanted the twins reunited in death. There’s something to this theory as Dick was supposedly haunted by a gravestone with his name on it somewhere out there in the world. So maybe it wasn’t something he was pumped about, and therefore wouldn’t have altered or really dealt with. Mystery 2: I didn’t find a lot about the symbolism of cats on tombstones. Some say it’s a symbol of resurrection, cats having 9 lives. I did wonder whether the cat was a later addition. Dick wrote books that did have concerns with animals, including Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep in which pets are a beloved status symbol, and a book called Nick and the Glimmung, a children’s book where a cat plays a key role. Dick was also known to like cats. The problems with Mysteries 1 and 2 is that they lead me to different conclusions. Mystery 1 makes it seem like maybe a cat was always on the grave. Mystery 2 made it seem like it was a later addition with Dick’s growing into adulthood. Maybe there needs to be an email to a historical society. This is my Golden State Killer moment. *************************UPDATE******************** I decided to go ahead and see what I could dig up. Pardon the graveyard pun. I emailed the director of museums and libraries in Fort Morgan, who asked two experts: a PKD literary expert and the cemetery superintendant. Here’s what I got: Cemetery Superintendant: so the stone at Philip’s gravesite was placed after he passed away… until then there was only a temporary marker for his baby sister, a very common marker to be left in our Cemeteries. Regarding the cat… the family members I have talked to have told me it is as simple as Philip was a cat lover. His love for the feline species is fairly well documented. I know there is no significance to a cat as it relates to their birthday or the fact that they were twins, so I feel comfortable rolling with that rationale. PKD Expert: PKD loved cats. His and Tessa’s cat Pinky (diminutive of Pinkerton as Tessa told me and nothing to do with any ‘pink beam’) figures, however, in Phil’s 1974 pink-beam events. In my Index to THE SELECTED LETTERS OF PHILIP K. DICK: 1974 there are 23 references to Pinky in Phil’s letters that year. He actually died and returned to Phil in one of his strange dreams to say farewell. He writes movingly of it in these letters. The pink beam events refer to hallucinations/visions that PKD experienced during his lifetime. So there we have it. There was A stone there, but not the current stone. Which explains the cat as well as the dog on Edgar’s grave. I’m prepared to call it case closed here. Thanks to Chandra McCoy: Library/Museum Director for the City of Fort Morgan!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Tuck

    interesting use of illustrations with bio and quotes. poor pkd has some real mental and social problems, that and writing almost continually/ constantly plus self medicating heavily and not getting literary respect drove him again and again to the wall. till finally he gave

  6. 4 out of 5

    Ed Erwin

    Pretty good. I've read a longer text-based bio of PKD, so not much of this is new to me. In the longer bio, I felt there was more information than I really cared to know. In this, there is too little. But enough for the casual admirer of PKD who wants to learn a little about his life. The graphic format works, and can do some things that are hard to do in prose, like show you what the places looked like. A few things that I found missing: it shows PKD as an adult stealing his mother's benzedrine, Pretty good. I've read a longer text-based bio of PKD, so not much of this is new to me. In the longer bio, I felt there was more information than I really cared to know. In this, there is too little. But enough for the casual admirer of PKD who wants to learn a little about his life. The graphic format works, and can do some things that are hard to do in prose, like show you what the places looked like. A few things that I found missing: it shows PKD as an adult stealing his mother's benzedrine, but it never explains that his mother and his doctors had got him hooked on that as a kid. It doesn't explore his relationship with his mother at all, though that was interesting and complicated. It shows the death of his twin sister as an infant, but doesn't mention how that haunted him. Etc. But for an introduction, or for those who don't need a full biography, this works well. Like 99% of the books I read in translation from French, this was translated by Edward Gauvin. Either he totally owns the translation market, or we just have similar tastes!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lukasz

    4.5/5 Dick’s novels and short fiction have ignited imagination of countless readers around the globe and inspired a handful of cult films. I’ve discovered him in my late teens and read all his books in less than two months. I became a fan. Laurent Queyssi and Mauro Marchesi‘ graphic biography of PKD focuses on pivoting events of his life, starting on February 17, 1982 (when he suffered a stroke). Readers get to see him as a shy and passionate teen obsessed with music and science fiction. Later as 4.5/5 Dick’s novels and short fiction have ignited imagination of countless readers around the globe and inspired a handful of cult films. I’ve discovered him in my late teens and read all his books in less than two months. I became a fan. Laurent Queyssi and Mauro Marchesi‘ graphic biography of PKD focuses on pivoting events of his life, starting on February 17, 1982 (when he suffered a stroke). Readers get to see him as a shy and passionate teen obsessed with music and science fiction. Later as a young husband and published author who struggles with deadlines and everyday life. DIvorce follows divorce. Caught is a psychoactive substance abuse, Phil wonders where the reality ends and perception begins. I needed time to get used to the art, but once I did, I started to appreciate how effortlessly it shows the author’s life, his personal and business relationships, and struggles. Storytelling feels focused, effortless and skilled.  Well worth the read.  ARC through NetGalley

  8. 4 out of 5

    Marjolein

    Read all my reviews on http://urlphantomhive.booklikes.com Philip K. Dick was a very well known science fiction writer, but I have not read anything by him besides Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep (which became the movie Blade Runner). I was mostly interested in the comic biography form, but was also glad to learn more about Dick's complicated life. This was not the most in depth analysis of the author or his work, but I think it worked quite well for those who just want to know a bit more a Read all my reviews on http://urlphantomhive.booklikes.com Philip K. Dick was a very well known science fiction writer, but I have not read anything by him besides Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep (which became the movie Blade Runner). I was mostly interested in the comic biography form, but was also glad to learn more about Dick's complicated life. This was not the most in depth analysis of the author or his work, but I think it worked quite well for those who just want to know a bit more about him. I certainly learned new things, one of the most shocking the shear amount of novels the man wrote in a very limited window. 5 in one year alone. Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jon Stout

    This graphic biography of Philip K. Dick, while artful and drawn well, is not up to the standards of other graphic “novels” that I have read. Philip K. Dick’s life, at least in this portrayal, seems to consist of a series of dysfunctional marriages and drug addiction crises, without any pattern of growth or insight to give it meaning. I have read four of Dick’s novels, and I went back to reread my own reviews of them. All were much more interestingly constructed than the biography. One would hop This graphic biography of Philip K. Dick, while artful and drawn well, is not up to the standards of other graphic “novels” that I have read. Philip K. Dick’s life, at least in this portrayal, seems to consist of a series of dysfunctional marriages and drug addiction crises, without any pattern of growth or insight to give it meaning. I have read four of Dick’s novels, and I went back to reread my own reviews of them. All were much more interestingly constructed than the biography. One would hope that an author who could construct elaborate fictional structures could construct some meaning in his own life. If he did, it was not captured in this biography. Perhaps he left it all in his novels. The graphic artwork is appropriately psychedelic for the psychotic breakdowns, and there are connections made here and there between Dick’s life events and his novels. Other science fiction authors are depicted as friends, but not Robert Heinlein, who I understand helped Philip K. Dick at critical points in his life. I don’t doubt that Philip K. Dick’s life was troubled and unhappy, but this graphic biography does not explain how Dick overcame that to write his inventive novels.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Crystal

    Fantastic! Essential reading for fans of PKD.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Sinamile

    ARC Review: Received for free via Netgalley for an honest review. All opinions are my own. CW: drug use, ableist slurs, abuse This is like a solid 3 stars tough I couldn't really tell you what I liked and hated about it. It's a cool read, if you want a quick history lesson, but it's not a lot. The art was nice but the story was kind of bland and, I don't know maybe I wasn't paying enough attention, but the ending felt sudden. It's alright though overall.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Hayden

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. In recent years, I have been fascinated with Philip K Dick's work, thanks to films such as Total Recall (1990), short stories I found in the Electric Dreams collection, and reading his novel A Scanner Darkly. He is a fantastic and imaginative writer who presents us with interesting and disturbing topics that let us view the world in a different light. So, of course I would jump on the chance to read about his life. Was it worth the read? Well...yes and no. There are several details about Dick's lif In recent years, I have been fascinated with Philip K Dick's work, thanks to films such as Total Recall (1990), short stories I found in the Electric Dreams collection, and reading his novel A Scanner Darkly. He is a fantastic and imaginative writer who presents us with interesting and disturbing topics that let us view the world in a different light. So, of course I would jump on the chance to read about his life. Was it worth the read? Well...yes and no. There are several details about Dick's life at play here. His health problems from birth, his drug addiction, his mystifying ideas and his paranoia (not to mention the slew of relationships he had). These details, small and disjointed as they are, offer a glimpse at the author at work and why he wrote the stories he did. It seemed at times that it was an outlet for him to let out the complex, hurtful and surreal images in his mind. That being said, the biography never takes full advantage of these details, nor does it paint Dick as anything more than a paranoid drug addicted writer. All we truly get is less of a non-linear storyline and more of a 'this happened and then this and then this' trip. Give us more! Even showing his journey into one of his novels would have provided more meat to the bone. For instance, A Scanner Darkly is said to be a personal story for the man in question, yet there is only one mention of it. I would personally have loved to see that being written and what his methods were like. The illustrations, provided by Mauro Marchesi, are the best aspects of the biography. A blend of realism and surrealism, the artwork is expressive and bright, yet always hiding that darkness, much like Dave Gibbons did for Watchmen. It was a marvel to experience, especially some of Dick's dreams and hallucinations. Whilst not terrible and providing a few interesting facts about the writer himself, it did little to show Philip K Dick for who he truly was. All it provided in this intriguing yet underdeveloped graphic novel is a writer without showing their methods.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Valéria.

    This biography comics offers an original point of view on the life of one of the best sci-fi writers. I used to read Dick’s work during my puberty and after, and then I stopped for some reason I can’t rememeber of now, but after this I am in pretty good mood to start again with his work. This was kind, enjoyable and informative in good way (not just filled with stupid facts and dates). Nice look into tragic life of five times married, mentally unstable sci-fi author. 3,5/5 (Challenge 2019 - Biogr This biography comics offers an original point of view on the life of one of the best sci-fi writers. I used to read Dick’s work during my puberty and after, and then I stopped for some reason I can’t rememeber of now, but after this I am in pretty good mood to start again with his work. This was kind, enjoyable and informative in good way (not just filled with stupid facts and dates). Nice look into tragic life of five times married, mentally unstable sci-fi author. 3,5/5 (Challenge 2019 - Biography – done)

  14. 5 out of 5

    Erik Carl son

    I love the art and what the books seems to accomplish, but the scope of the narrative is limited and works more as a Cliff’s Notes for the large biographies.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mike

    Some of the most significant episodes of Philip K. Dick's life, presented in a comics format. In order to come in at a reasonable lenght, Laurent Queyssi had to pick and choose which events to dramatize. In general, I think his judgment was excellent. My only complaint is that PKD's first wife, Jeanette, is completely absent from the account. The art is excellent, depicting period details like clothes and furnishings perfectly. While these are all events I'd read about in other PKD biographies, Some of the most significant episodes of Philip K. Dick's life, presented in a comics format. In order to come in at a reasonable lenght, Laurent Queyssi had to pick and choose which events to dramatize. In general, I think his judgment was excellent. My only complaint is that PKD's first wife, Jeanette, is completely absent from the account. The art is excellent, depicting period details like clothes and furnishings perfectly. While these are all events I'd read about in other PKD biographies, when they are accompanied by illustrations, it makes them seem fresh and new. A very enjoyable addition to the body of PKD biographical works.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Casey Cassidy

    3.5/5 stars. Disclaimer: I received this this in exchange for an honest review from the publisher through NetGalley This was a wild ride. I didn't know much about Philip K Dick as a person going into this and so this was fascinating. I've read only one novel by him - Ubik, which I loved - and this made me want to dive back into his work all over again. I love the art style and the attention to detail I felt like was present. I've never taken perception altering drugs, and I'm not just saying that, 3.5/5 stars. Disclaimer: I received this this in exchange for an honest review from the publisher through NetGalley This was a wild ride. I didn't know much about Philip K Dick as a person going into this and so this was fascinating. I've read only one novel by him - Ubik, which I loved - and this made me want to dive back into his work all over again. I love the art style and the attention to detail I felt like was present. I've never taken perception altering drugs, and I'm not just saying that, but I feel like some of these spreads made me feel like I assume that feels like. Overall I'd definitely recommend this to people who are even a little curious, but he was a very interesting man. Not a very nice or maybe even good man, but he was trying. And it was a wild ride. There's also inclusion of snippets of some of his own letters, which was really cool to see his words in his own experience since I've never read any of those. And, to be honest, am not super interested in reading through his letters without the context I feel like was given here. To wrap it up - I'd recommend this book, for SciFi lovers or others, especially for writers it was interesting to me.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Theediscerning

    This is very much what it says it is – a graphic novel biography of the novelist Philip Kindred Dick. Some will find it very episodic, to the extent that some episodes are, without reason or apology, not even in the right order. But I liked it for its visual and story-telling simplicity. I don't turn to these books expecting all the ins and outs of a prose biography – and I'm not that much of a fan to desire one of those in the first place. And let's face it, a biography more in tune with the st This is very much what it says it is – a graphic novel biography of the novelist Philip Kindred Dick. Some will find it very episodic, to the extent that some episodes are, without reason or apology, not even in the right order. But I liked it for its visual and story-telling simplicity. I don't turn to these books expecting all the ins and outs of a prose biography – and I'm not that much of a fan to desire one of those in the first place. And let's face it, a biography more in tune with the style of the subject would be unsufferably druggy and off-a-cliff-all-over-the-place. There are instances of that here, but this more controlled and concise life-and-times was much more up my street.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Rigoberto Vega

    I'm familiar with Philip K Dick's life trough documentaries but never have I read much about him other than in Wikipedia and other articles. For this reason, I think I didn't have much trouble knowing what was happening in the comic but even then I sometimes felt a little lost because everything seems to happen too fast. I can understand that the comic is short and a summarized version of his life, but it might not be easy to pick up unless you know about him beforehand. On a positive note, the I'm familiar with Philip K Dick's life trough documentaries but never have I read much about him other than in Wikipedia and other articles. For this reason, I think I didn't have much trouble knowing what was happening in the comic but even then I sometimes felt a little lost because everything seems to happen too fast. I can understand that the comic is short and a summarized version of his life, but it might not be easy to pick up unless you know about him beforehand. On a positive note, the illustrations are decent and the subject matter is good for a graphic novel so I say it's worth checking out.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Allie Harris

    I received a copy of this book through the publisher. To be honest, I didn't know anything about Philip K Dick - other than a few of his novels - and I feel like a background history on him would have been helpful before diving into this one. The artwork is gorgeous and really helps to capture his slow decent into madness, and his loss of grip on reality. But I feel like there was a lot left out. A lot of focusing on his multiple wives and not a lot on his actual successes. Overall, a really int I received a copy of this book through the publisher. To be honest, I didn't know anything about Philip K Dick - other than a few of his novels - and I feel like a background history on him would have been helpful before diving into this one. The artwork is gorgeous and really helps to capture his slow decent into madness, and his loss of grip on reality. But I feel like there was a lot left out. A lot of focusing on his multiple wives and not a lot on his actual successes. Overall, a really interesting read, a very cool book, and I'm thrilled to have a copy on my bookshelves.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    The length of this biography matched my level of interest in Dick (short & curious). The book sketches the outline of Dick's personal life, his multiple marriages, his struggle to be taken seriously as a writer and eventually his paranoia and mental instability (he also did a LOT of drugs, some of which may have aided his writing at he expense of himself). I would have liked more melding of his life and his work, but it does offer a vivid portrait of Dick and the artwork was nice. It does make m The length of this biography matched my level of interest in Dick (short & curious). The book sketches the outline of Dick's personal life, his multiple marriages, his struggle to be taken seriously as a writer and eventually his paranoia and mental instability (he also did a LOT of drugs, some of which may have aided his writing at he expense of himself). I would have liked more melding of his life and his work, but it does offer a vivid portrait of Dick and the artwork was nice. It does make me want to go read Blade Runner, but I'm sure I won't.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Edward Fenner

    PKD is one of my all-time favourite science-fiction authors. A fantastic and peculiar writer, he has given us many classic works of speculative literature. An often deeply-troubled man who either had some mental health issues or drug problem (or both), this comics biography does capture fairly well Dick's story, his weirdness, his phobias, paranoias, and other struggles. Disjointed like his life, this biography is fairly good but doesn't completely satisfy. It seems incomplete and alien somehow. PKD is one of my all-time favourite science-fiction authors. A fantastic and peculiar writer, he has given us many classic works of speculative literature. An often deeply-troubled man who either had some mental health issues or drug problem (or both), this comics biography does capture fairly well Dick's story, his weirdness, his phobias, paranoias, and other struggles. Disjointed like his life, this biography is fairly good but doesn't completely satisfy. It seems incomplete and alien somehow. Perhaps that's appropriate.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Robert

    Fun graphic biography of PKD. Touched on many facets of his life, but did not go very deeply into any of them. Makes me want to read a more in-depth biography, or at least read more of his short stories (which read in order together, seem to serve as his autobiography). All in all a good read, and a good summary of his life. The parts about his psychedelic/ psychotic visions & experiences, & his mystical/ metaphisical freak-outs were really fun to read. I was sad the incident where he tried to d Fun graphic biography of PKD. Touched on many facets of his life, but did not go very deeply into any of them. Makes me want to read a more in-depth biography, or at least read more of his short stories (which read in order together, seem to serve as his autobiography). All in all a good read, and a good summary of his life. The parts about his psychedelic/ psychotic visions & experiences, & his mystical/ metaphisical freak-outs were really fun to read. I was sad the incident where he tried to drive his car (and his wife?) off a cliff was not included.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Nancy

    A good way to get a quick life story of an author I have enjoyed. What a tortured soul! He must have been very hard to live with. I wonder what all the women in his life thought. Not a lot of depth, but that can't be expected from a graphic depiction. I did feel satisfied. I would not want to get any deeper into this man's story.

  24. 5 out of 5

    James

    This is probably all I want to know about Dick, indeed maybe too much. From his string of neglected teenage wives, drug abuse and insanity, you can see a glimmer of what formed his writing. A comic biography is somehow appropriate, I wouldn't read any other type in this case. The art does help with the narrative.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Pat Rolston

    No substitute for any of his biographies, but a quick refresher for those interested getting reacquainted. I enjoy this format when executed with a bit more detail, but this is worth the short investment in time to finish. I was prompted as I work through the Amazon, Ridley Scott, directed version of, ‘The Man in the High Castle,’ which I highly recommend to all fans of PKD.

  26. 4 out of 5

    John

    While the art in this biography of Dick is rather mundane, there are some subtle touches that show him aging and changing throughout his life. There are a few surreal moments, which are appropriate, but I think the author could have done more artistically. This is a pretty average biography.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jamie

    This isn't a story about his stories. It's an attempt to understand the man himself. I'm a fan of the sum of his works but I've never tried to understand the kind of person that takes to write stories like he did.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Matthew Barnes

    A graphic telling of Philip K. Dick's life, but could have been more detailed. Full review: https://mb-bookreviews.blogspot.com/2... A graphic telling of Philip K. Dick's life, but could have been more detailed. Full review: https://mb-bookreviews.blogspot.com/2...

  29. 5 out of 5

    Perry

    A nice overview of Dick's life in a graphic novel, but I would have liked less about his various marriages and more about the inspiration of his books.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Denise

    hard to understand the purpose of this book. The focus is not on what made Dick famous, but rather on his private life, although that was also very short on details.

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