I confess this blog has been woefully neglected over the last six months. Training for the US Barista Championship took up quite a bit of my already limited spare time, and I felt a greater responsibility to keep readers of The Compass satiated with fresh content. But I’ve been wanting to get back in the personal blog saddle for a while, and starting my summer reading list gives me just the excuse I needed.
I’m kicking things off with Philip K. Dick’s classic sci-fi distopia Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Literary critic Eric P. Nash once said (according to the blurb on the cover) that Dick is “a kind of pulp-fiction Kafka, a prophet.” Although I’m embarrassed to admit I’ve never actually read Kafka, I completely agree with the second half of the sentiment. Dick’s view of the not-so-distant future involves scientifically controlled emotions, radioactive dust, and nearly extinct animals serving as the highest commodity. Throw in a bounty hunter chasing some highly intelligent androids and you have a compelling story that takes a hard look at the meaning and value of life.