Exiled for 2,000 years God must retake the Earth from the clutches of his nemesis using a man caught between life and death as His vessel. God is in exile. The only man who can help is clinically dead. Herb Asher, an audio engineer by trade, is in suspended animation following a car accident that appears to have taken his life. As he floats in cryonic suspension he awaits his new spleen and dreams back through the last six years of his life which reveal much of his bizarre journey and the battle with Belial, the force of evil that will stop at nothing to achieve its goal.
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(197mm x 130mm x 18mm)
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
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US Kirkus Review »
Has old pro Dick seen The Light? There've been sf novels with religious themes before (e.g., Blish's A Case of Conscience, Miller's A Canticle for Leibowitz, Zelazny's Lord of Light), but none as relentlessly theological in tone, texture, and import as this. God ("Yah"), booted off Earth by the Romans, has taken up residence on a remote methane-snow planet. And when squatters from Earth arrive, Yah decides it's time to make a comeback as his own Messiah. So he contacts dome-dweller Herb Asher (who agrees to claim God's paternity); impregnates ailing neighbor Rybys Romney; and journeys to Earth in the latter's womb - a necessary subterfuge, since Earth is controlled by the Belial-inspired Christian-Islamic church and the Scientific Legate, with computer Big Noodle keeping tabs on everyone. Thus reborn on Earth as Emmanuel, Yah is helped by Elias Tate (who's Elijah reincarnated) and by girl-of-mystery Zina (who turns out to be the living embodiment of the Torah) to recover his powers and challenge Belial for the supremacy. With profuse, muddled plotting in the Dick manner - though without any of the usual Dick playfulness - this is destined, perhaps, to be pored over in seminaries; but it's far, far too heavy to attract many mainstream sf readers. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Philip K. Dick
Philip K Dick was born in Chicago in 1928 and lived most of his life in California. He attended college for a year at Berkeley. Apart from writing, his main interest was music. He won the Hugo Award for his classic novel of alternative history, The Man in the High Castle (1962). He was married five times and had three children. He died in March 1982.