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The Demolished Man Paperback – July 2, 1996
A network of beacons allows ships to travel across the Milky Way at beyond the speed of light. The beacons are built to be robust. They never fail. At least, they aren't supposed to. Learn more
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Top Customer Reviews
Unfortunately this e-edition seems to have been rushed. It is filled with typographical errors, which are made more annoying because the author used odd typography to help you fell the setting. For instance, one character is named 1/4main (Quartermain), and another is Wyg& (Wygand). I am NOT saying these examples are mistakes, but somehow every instance of the word "marry" is spelled "many". There are numerous other instances. I hope it will be cleaned up.
A near future world where a small minority has developed their latent ESP, Bester's world is a compelling mix of utopia and dystopia. The mind police have virtually eliminated crime, either by rooting it out beforehand, or by always catching their man after-the-fact. But this safety comes at a dear price, where the unenforcable promise of the ESPers is only guarantee of privacy that most have.
However, Ben Reich, as head of a major corporate powerhouse, feels that he can outsmart the ESPers. Haunted in his dreams by a mysterious man, and driven by uncontrolled passions, Reich decides to eliminate his chief rival, D'Courtney. The murder sets off a brilliant battle of wits between Reich and the head investigator, Powell, which can only end in the "demolition" of Reich, or the total embarrassment of Powell.
Who gets demolished? What IS "demolition"? Why would Reich risk so much to kill D'Courtney? With so many pressing questions, it was amazing to see Bester wrap this book up in such a fulfilling way. A great mystery with a clever ending, set in a compelling near future world - despite its age, "The Demolished Man" remains a standard-bearer of its field.
P.S. Also if you like this novel read The Stars, My Destination. I think, this is the best novel Alfred Bester written.
But the science is fantastical (a failing of 50's SF) and if you don't like the writing style, you'll most likely not finish the book, so do take a peek first.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The go-to book for telepath novels.
This is one of the few stories that really has telepathy as more than just o form of talking without speaking.
This is a classic that is so fresh it is hard to believe it wasn't written yesterday, or that you didn't just see this in a movie? Read morePublished 1 month ago by Heather Rogaczewski
Well written and interesting read. Holds up well despite the intervening years.Published 3 months ago by Riley Shaw
After his story "Tiger Tiger" this has become an all-time favorite of mine, worth more than one read!Published 4 months ago by David J. Shields
The Demolished Man, for my money, is NOT Hugo level material SF. My guess is that those voting were happy to see an original idea, and something different from “space opera,” which... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Sam Clemens
Well-paced and flowed very nicely. The simplicity that made pacing and flow such a joy worked against the prose, however. While not mediocre, it was a bit... wanting. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Peter Carrier
Alfred Bester wrote only two science fiction novels but both are in the all time top ten (top five in my opinion). Read morePublished 5 months ago by Desert Rat