“The basic thing is, how frightened are you of chaos? And how happy are you with order?” —Philip K. Dick
One of the 20th century’s most prolific, influential, and dazzlingly original science fiction writers, Philip K. Dick spent his career navigating the contours of perception and questioning the nature of reality: What does it mean to be human? What is time? What is god?
But for much of his life, Dick banged away in relative obscurity, publishing at the rate of a hack, utterly ostracized by the literary establishment. The interviews collected here—from the very first, when Dick was just a 26-year-old kid from Berkeley, to the last, conducted the day before he suffered the stroke that killed him—reveal a man plagued by bouts of manic paranoia and failed suicide attempts; a writer fueled by alcohol, amphetamines, and mystical inspiration; and, above all, a magnificent and generous imagination at work.
“Dick wasn’t a legend and he wasn’t mad,” the novelist Jonathan Lethem, one of Dick’s many disciples, wrote. “He lived among us and he was a genius.” Philip K. Dick: The Last Interview is an essential testament to one of the great masters of American literature.
“Dick is one of the ten best American writers of the 20th century, which is saying a lot . . . Dick is Thoreau plus the death of the American dream.” —Roberto Bolaño
“Our own homegrown Borges.” —Ursula K. Le Guin
“Dick wasn’t a legend and he wasn’t mad. He lived among us and was a genius.” —Jonathan Lethem