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Dr. Identity (Scikungfi Trilogy Book 1) Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Two hundred years in the future, academia is infested with loafing professors who routinely send their android doubles--or "'gangers"--in to teach their classes, and bored "student-things" keep awake only by ingesting ephedrine-laced doughnut holes. At Bliptown's Corndog University, the practice of android substitution leads to mayhem when Dr. Identity, the 'ganger for English professor Blah, accidentally murders a prominent student-thing. To cover his tracks, Dr. Identity methodically slaughters the entire English department and flees with the stunned Professor Blah on a jetpack over Bliptown's sprawling cityscape. How the ever-resourceful Dr. Identity and his hapless charge navigate the surreal and bewildering technological landscape of Bliptown while evading the ubiquitous "papanazi" militia fills out the plot of Wilson's madcap, macabre black comedy. Along the way, readers meet rudely intrusive newsmen, mechanical bug-eyed monsters, and an aspiring papanazi known only as Achtung 66.799. Wilson's sardonic, riotously imaginative vision of the future holds a mirror up to our own increasingly chaotic society and makes provocative entertainment. Carl Hays
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

"Madcap, macabre black comedy...Wilson's sardonic, riotously imaginative vision of the future holds a mirror up to our own increasingly chaotic society and makes provocative entertainment." -- Booklist

Product Details

  • File Size: 522 KB
  • Print Length: 212 pages
  • Publisher: Raw Dog Screaming Press (January 3, 2011)
  • Publication Date: January 3, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004HYHJRW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #807,661 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

D. HARLAN WILSON is a novelist, editor, literary critic, playwright and English professor. He has published over twenty works of fiction and nonfiction, and hundreds of his stories have appeared in magazines, journals and anthologies across the world in several languages. His books include BATTLE WITHOUT HONOR OR HUMANITY, THEY LIVE (CULTOGRAPHIES), PRIMORDIAL: AN ABSTRACTION, THE BIOGRAPHIZER TRILOGY, THE SCIKUNGFI TRILOGY, THEY HAD GOAT HEADS, PECKINPAH: AN ULTRAVIOLENT ROMANCE, TECHNOLOGIZED DESIRE: SELFHOOD & THE BODY IN POSTCAPITALIST SCIENCE FICTION, and others. Visit Wilson online at www.DHarlanWilson.com and www.TheKyotoMan.com.

"Wilson has been duly anointed as speculative fiction's most unpredictable stylist." --BOOKLIST

"If reality is a crutch, D. Harlan Wilson has thrown it away." --RAIN TAXI

"A bludgeoning celluloid rush of language and ideas served from an action-painter's bucket of fluorescent spatter, PECKINPAH: AN ULTRAVIOLENT ROMANCE is an incendiary gem and very probably the most extraordinary new novel you will read this year." --ALAN MOORE

"CODENAME PRAGUE is from the wild edge of science fiction, in the tradition of Philip K. Dick's Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch--fast, smart, funny, and full of a scarily plausible vision of just how weird things could get if we take our biological fate into our own hands." --KIM STANLEY ROBINSON

"This intense mixture of giddy activity, cyberpunk essences, avant fusion and social satire may make your head spin at an accelerated rate. Actual brain damage is unlikely, in most cases." --JOHN SHIRLEY

"CODENAME PRAGUE is a thrill-a-minute combination of James Bond, Robert Ludlum, and cyberpunk, set in a dangerous, erotic, and not-as-distant-as-you'd-wish future." --MIKE RESNICK

"Who IS this guy?" --PAT CADIGAN

"DR. IDENTITY is a rollicking romp through a future so absurd, it can't help but feel real. D. Harlan Wilson shows us everything we know--but wish we didn't--about ourselves." --ROBERT VENDITTI

"Let's dispense with the usual predictable analogies ('Kafka/Cronenberg-on-laughing-gas'), redundancies ('Phillip K. Dick/William Gibson-on-acid'), or accurate-but-somewhat-obscure references ('the most intense and, in a certain sense, the most significant young prose writer since Mark Leyner and Ben Marcus ... establishes Wilson as the Steve Katz of the post-everything generation ... vies with Derek Pell's THE LITTLE RED BOOK OF ADOBE LIVEMOTION for being the funniest book of the new millennium'), and cut to the chase: D Harlan Wilson's hilarious meta-pulp SF novel, DR. IDENTITY, is a funhouse mirror whose cartoonish distortions continually amaze and amuse--until one realizes that what we're seeing is a disturbingly accurate vision of ourselves. An instant avant-pop classic by a major new talent. Two surgically-enhanced, stainless-steel thumbs way, way up!" --LARRY MCCAFFERY

"This book's better'n the bushelfull of Benzedrine-spiked donut holes with which DR. IDENTITY tries to bribe his students into civilized demeanor! Pomo cybertheory never tasted so good or made you fly this high!" --AMERICAN BOOK REVIEW

"Readers with a taste for wacky experimental fiction will enjoy D. Harlan Wilson's DR. IDENITY, OR, FAREWELL TO PLAQUEDEMIA, a pulp science fiction novel set in the postcapitalist city of Bliptown." --PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

"'Destroy time so that chaos may be ordered' was the instruction more than half a century ago of Mailer's Man Who Studied Yoga and D. Harlan Wilson has taken that advice seriously; here is a novel which implodes and conflates autobiography, biography, history, quasi-history, alternate history and Occam's Safety Razor in a fashion which I find utterly original and utterly discommoding. The exquisite tilt of BLANKETY BLANK runs us all off the board and on; its originality is a weapon. Firing at that bullseye on time." --BARRY N. MALZBERG

"If you had a time machine and could secure the living brains of James Thurber and Andre Breton ripped untimely from their skulls, run them through a juicer, then mainline the blended liquid neurons, you might become a writer like D. Harlan Wilson. In fact, I know with certainty that this is how he actually got his start. As evidenced by his new 'Memoir of Vulgaria,' BLANKETY BLANK, we are facing a writer who can evoke howls of pity and tears of laughter on the same page, and generally within the same sentence. In this 'multimedia' novel, suburban inanity and insanity are depicted in loving and intimate depth, resulting in a furiously animated canvas equal parts Bosch and Tex Avery. Imagine an episode of The Simpsons scripted by Robert Coover and Donald Barthelme, then directed by Michel Gondry, and you won't be far off the mark. If this be "interstitial" fiction, then it's a case of the interstices expanding like a galaxy to overwhelm whatever bland shores once flanked them." --PAUL DI FILIPPO

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Known for his surreal short stories, this is Wilson's first foray into novel writing, and he pulls it off without a hitch. The book is set in a city of the future where trends come and go at the speed that it takes a bullet to leave a gun. It's the sort of place where the box set for a season of a television show would be released a minute after the first episode is finished broadcasting. And most of the inhabitants are disguised as someone or something else.

I can't recall a book (or movie for that matter) more violent than this one. It puts the kill count of any Arnold Schwarzenegger movie to shame. But the violence is cartoonish rather than disturbing.

Most of the book is a chase sequence with the occasional pit stop. Dr. Blah Blah Blah is a hesitant Mallory Knox to his Mickey - Dr. Identity, his android simulacrum who teaches is literature classes when he's not feeling up to it and has been programmed with the balls to do everything that Blah feels the urge to do but never does because of his inhibitions. In this case, it's all about murdering the people who get on his nerves. Dr. Blah must be very easily annoyed.

Pursued by the Papanazi, a group of maniacal photographers competing to give the public what they most desire - snapshots of the "Dystopian Duo" in action, the two criminal take us on a whirlwind tour of the city, a locale that throws science fiction, fantasy, and surrealism into a blender and mixes them into a hangover cure where anything can happen after you take your first sip.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After reading the first few chapters of this book, you'll think to yourself "Wow, this guy REALLY knows his sci-fi."

I say this because any science fiction fan will know that sci-fi novels often are sprinkled (or doused) with its own lingo. Authors create a future and go about sprucing everyday items up and giving them knew names. Sometimes this makes the entire story/novel confusing, sometimes it works to create a richer world that just feels more real. Which one is DR. IDENTITY? Well, let's just say it's a rich, rich world.

D. Harlan Wilson has obviously studied science-fiction. You can tell just by the way he uses language in order to paint the world he created. It's quite similar, in fact, to Philip K. Dick. I believe that there is indeed shadows of PKD throughout DR. IDENTITY and this is not a bad thing at all.

One thing that sets THIS book and the works of PKD is the humor. DR.IDENTITY is filled with it. Even in the ultraviolent, splatter(cyber)punk parts.. you can't help but chuckle at the absurd lengths of bloody carnage.

The book is also a furious attack on academia. D. Harlan Wilson seems to be no stranger to that world and has had enough experience to see through the B.S. of the academic world. Throughout this book you'll see not so subtle jabs at that world and you'll laugh. However, through that laughter you'll realize that it's actually quite sad considering how very true it is. In fact, if I was a department head or a Dean at a university, I wouldn't be happy at all by this book. I'd probably dismiss it as fluff or garbage. But thank god I'm not because this book is anything but fluff or garbage. The author himself calls it a "pulp science fiction" novel... but really it feels like more than that.

Okay, so what about action?
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
I was pretty much rivetted to this novel after page 2. At first I thought that only my desire for science fiction and futurist tales were going to be the only desires satisfied, however, this story goes so much further.

The 'between the lines' messages within this tale and the way in which Wilson carefully manipulates both the reader and the characters is superb. I haven't had so much cause for re-thinking my psyche since I saw Dune and Bladerunner. Top notch!
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Format: Paperback
Words cannot describe what this book is about, what it's like to read it, or even if it's good or not. Dr. Identity just "is" and your brain will find a way to rationalize the enormous amount of organized chaos in its own unique way. No two people will rationalize it the same way.

Instead of building a world and explaining why the world is the way it is, Wilson chooses to simply present this world and let us make of it what we will. A lot of stuff happens in Bliptown, and it's our job to organize it ourselves and figure out what it all means, if anything. What is this surreal, violent and crazy story about? I'm still not sure. What I do know is that it's laugh-out-loud absurd, totally unpredictable, chaotic and yet oddly familiar. Amidst the chaos, I got the feeling that there was some sort of sinister architecture holding the whole thing up. A method to the madness. Not entirely sure what, but on some subconscious level the story made me a better person...

I think.

The energy buildup is incredible, and the ending is quite a fitting release for it. It's anticlimactic, yes, but again I sensed it was appropriate (more sinister architecture).

Highly recommended you read Wilson's Stranger on the Loose before attempting this book. It will help you appreciate it better. Thanks, Herr Wilson-thing for one hell of a ride.
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