Reading Is Cool Book Club – Book Review #1: Philip K. Dick’s “The Man in the High Castle” – @JamesSantore


Welcome back to the “Reading is Cool” Book Club, where the nerds are the ones who DON’T READ. So call out a nerd today and get them on board and let’s start tearing through these suckers.


After finishing The Da Vinci Code earlier this week, I had planned on continuing the Robert Langdon saga with The Lost Symbol, but because the book was unavailable on Kindle Unlimited (and I’m a cheap POS who didn’t want to pay double for a digital copy) I decided to read another book to pass the time.

Philip K. Dick’s The Man in the High Castle was the book of choice, a recommendation from the esteemed Ryan Harbinson of Clearbridge Branding (Shout out Harb – REAL ONE!). I have always had an affinity for learning more about the WWII-era; It is amazing to see how far the world has come, even with all of the craziness currently going on, since this period. And honestly, a book such as The Man in the High Castle gives a perspective that I think a lot of people can use right now.

An alternate future where the USA is not the USA we know and love, and instead that under a foreign power with merciless rule. The way Dick tells his story is very unique: full of run-on sentences, points-of-view changing rapidly throughout chapters, and a beginning of the book that can turn those less-involved readers away quickly. But if you stick through it and understand what Dick is trying to portray, the book is unbelievable.

When I finished reading the book, I laid in silence for a long period of time trying to make sense of the ending; and without spoiling anything, I think that is what Dick wanted the reader to do when they are finished. Explore the meaning behind the story they just read. Evaluate how that relates to their view on the world currently. And most importantly, make us appreciate the world we get to live in every day: no matter how difficult things get.

I needed to read something like this and I am very happy I did. I cannot recommend The Man in the High Castle enough and would love to hear the opinion of others who have also had the pleasure of reading this literary masterpiece.

Next up: George Orwell’s 1984. I know a lot of you may have read this in high school, but I was never afforded the chance to. Review #2 coming soon!


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