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Tuesday, June 6, 2017

The Divine InvasionThe Divine Invasion by Philip K. Dick
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This happens to be my third read and like the one that immediately precedes it, it's well worth the extra effort.

Absolutely amazing is only a part of what it is. It's also a complicated exploration of comparative religions, a roaring tale of a battle between God and the Devil, and it's also about totally re-writing reality because it's all a hologram... or is it?

It has the Living Torah, it has the Kabbalah, it has Zoroastrianism and Maat and the Fairy Queen and Palas Athena. It has a brain damaged kid that holds the universe in his mind, Elijah traveling through time as the spirit of the Holy Ghost (who was once Mozart), and Herb Asher, the god-smuggler, the lover of music, the *mostly* dead and frozen Job of the novel, constantly being pulled between good and evil. :)

In short, it seems to have everything, no?

But in fact, it's a very readable SF adventure with Yah an exile on another planet trying to take back the dominion of Earth from Belial, full of cool reveals and twists, and also quite a few down-to-earth mini-quests as if the fate of the world rests on the shoulders of one man's choices.

Oh yeah, and he's just the *legal* father of God. Not the real one. Can't let people think he's crazy or anything. :)

This *is* a companion to VALIS, Radio Free Albemuth, and The Transmigration of Timothy Archer. All of these books explore the same themes and tie wonderfully together as if the ideas are seen through a different part of the same prism. Even the dead cat from VALIS has is place as a dead dog in Divine Invasion, on this time it isn't just an angry man talking to a mad one, but two Gods making a point with each other. Oh, and Mother Goose even gets a cameo! :) Ohhh, Bowie...

I used to rank this lower in my mind with Valis, but in fact I think it belongs on an equal footing, now. It's quicker and a more traditional SF than VALIS but that shouldn't count against it. Indeed, it makes its points quite clearer in some ways. :)

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