- Mass Market Paperback
- Publisher: Spectra; First Edition edition (April 1, 1989)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0553277634
- ISBN-13: 978-0553277630
- Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,195,354 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Out on Blue Six Mass Market Paperback – April 1, 1989
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Top Customer Reviews
Courtney Hall is a cartoonist because that’s the job she’s been assigned by the tyrannical government agencies that dictate all of the details of everyone’s life — where they live, who their friends are, who they marry, what job they do. The goal of the government, which consists of such agencies as the Ministry of Pain, the Compassionate Society, and the Love Police, is to analyze every citizen’s genes and personality so that they can be assigned to the lifestyle that will minimize their pain and maximize their happiness, thus creating a populace that is obedient and compliant. The government assures that its dictates are adhered to by monitoring all activity and censoring criticism.
Most people seem content in the Compassionate Society because they like being pain-free, doing a job that they love (even if they’re not good at it) and being married to people who they’re compatible with (even if they don’t love them). But some people, including Courtney Hall, think there must be something more to life than avoiding pain and conflict. If she voices her opinions, or opposes the government’s decisions for her, she’ll be called in for reprogramming and have her mind wiped. When Courtney creates a satirical comic and finds herself on the run, she discovers a group of dissidents living under the city and joins their fight for freedom.
So far Out on Blue Six sounds like a typical dystopian novel. You’re probably expecting something like Nineteen Eighty-Four or Fahrenheit 451 but, to stick with the number-in-the-title theme, Out on Blue Six has more in common with Slaughterhouse-Five than either of those dystopias. It’s bizarre. Really bizarre. In fact, it feels much more like something Philip K.Read more ›
Fabulously entertaining both as story and as allegory!
The dis/utopian nature of the society reads somewhat like an optimistic version of Brazil, or a function version of the Paranoia games. Avoiding pain is the highest priority of the computers that run the society, so people are told what is best for them with no ability to argue. A few vignettes in the novel focus on this, but a great deal more is focused on the edges of the society.
The one downside to this book is the treatment of the ensemble. My favorite character, a Yulp comic artist, who starts the book, seems to fade into the background as characters with stronger survival skills are introduced. Other than this small issue, the book is a truly fantastic piece of work. It's a shame that it's out of print, but it still is readily available and worth a read.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I thoroughly enjoyed MacDonald's wry satire, his vivid and boundless imagination in this wry satire of humanities search for happiness without pain. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Gary Walston
In a teeming city of arcologies and love police, the only illegal thing you can really do is disrupt the happiness of others as mandated by The Compassionate Society, a governing... Read morePublished 19 months ago by Samuel Sanders
HIghly recommended if you like Ian McDonald. Creative and very enjoyable to read. Exceptional book.Published 23 months ago by Robin in FL
Everything you could ask for. Great characters, dystopian with an optimistic look to the future. Religion, art, commerce, science, all rolled up into a sexy sci fi burrito.Published on May 12, 2014 by lawrence andreth
I'm a McDonald fan - "... Blue Six" is wildly, profoundly, inventive & filled with great characters - science fiction & fantasy melded into a brilliant, post-modern genre.Published on April 14, 2014 by Jeremy Taylor (email@example.com)
Fine imagery, wry humor. Great to have this reissued; I loved River of Gods, Braseal and The Dervish House. MOAR PLZ.Published on March 27, 2014 by Paul B.
Starts like a novelization of Brazil, then goes up to 11 times 1984. This is really a very fun book.Published on March 22, 2014 by Jack Coates
This is one of the most intoxicating, wild, and imaginative science fiction novels I've had a chance to read. Read morePublished on January 24, 2014 by Bacterialover
A NewSociety in which Society judges an individual's purpose and pursuit of happiness, never that individual. "Out On Blue Six" is a wild ride at bullet-train speed. Read morePublished on January 17, 2014 by Mallory Heart Reviews