PUTTERING ABOUT IN A SMALL LAND

    "Published posthumously, this work is radically different from the famous science fiction author's past successes. It is a mood piece, a somber study of two young couples... a curious, oddly compelling book... Turning each page... the reader feels an odd suspense and a reluctance to abandon these four unpredictable but somehow endearing people." -- Booklist {on the back of the dustjacket}

1st.EDITION:
In the GSM Collection Academy Chicago, hb, 149-4, Oct 1985, 291pp, $16.95, (Armen Kojoyian)
wpe52.jpg (3914 bytes) In the GSM Collection UK 1st.: Paladin,tp, 08604-8, Aug 1987, 286pp, L3.95 (Neil Breedon)

FOREIGN EDITIONS

To a larger picture 10/18 (Domaine Etranger),?,  2420, Union Générale d'Editions, 1993, ?, ? (?) {tr. into French by Jacques Georgel as MON ROYAUME POUR UN MOUCHOIR} ISBN: 2-264-01772-4

{For the best bibliographic info in French goto: www.multimania.com/ggoullet/pkdick/frames.html Thanks for the cover pix, Gilles}


Vote for your Fave PKD Story!    Best-written Novel: PUTTERING ABOUT IN A SMALL LAND -- Gregg Rickman in FDO 6


PKDS-3 5: Major news is that PUTTERING ABOUT, one of PKD's best mainstream novels, has been sold to a commercial publisher (as opposed to a specialty small press) with an excellent reputation, Academy Chicago. Publication of this novel (tentatively scheduled for Spring '85) may well provide the springboard for a reappraisal and discovery of PKD as an important American novelist by the Literary Establishment in the U.S.. I also believe PUTTERING will be very enthusiastically received in Europe. It is a novel of the human condition -- cruder, lacking the subtle ironies and textured writing of CRAP ARTIST, but more passionate, more joyous and more despairing, full of empathy, very alive. The characters are Roger, cautious, tenacious, owner of a store that sells and repairs TVs, his wife Virginia, intellectual, nervous (at least partially based on PKD's mother Dorothy), their son, Chic, a businessman with plans for Roger's store, and Chic's wife Liz, a vivacious woman who says whatever comes into her head, one of PKD's most memorable characters and, mysteriously, one who does not seem to recur in his later work. Roger and Liz, against all reason, have a passionate affair and their little worlds start to fall apart. But not necessarily for the worst. Publication of PUTTERING will provide a new perspective on much of PKD's later work. In fact, perhaps Liz Bonner is in some sense a forerunner (in heart, not in itellect) of Zina in THE DIVINE INVASION... The setting is Los Angeles in the early 1950s; PUTTERING was probably completed in early 1957. After 28 years it will be published at last.

PKDS-6 4:

PUTTERING ABOUT IN A SMALL LAND from Academy Chicago, September {1985}

PKDS-11 5:

In Japan, Shobun-Sha is publishing translations of PUTTERING . {perhaps it should be 'Sogensha'?}

PKDS-11 6:

John Stanley has a long, thoughtful, favorable review of PUTTERING in the San Francisco Chronicle for 12-8-85 "This very readable book lives up to Dick's promises of heightened awareness -- the 'stream of unconscious', as he might have put it. Each character does have a unique way of seeing things and coping with problems. And therein is the novels' masterful strength, not its weakness."

PKDS-11 8:

PUTTERING ABOUT IN A SMALL LAND by Philip K. Dick [Academy Chicago. 425 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60611. 1985, hc. 291pp. $16.95

Four extremely believable characters. People. Adults. Two ordinary marriages, difficult to sustain but perhaps harder still to disrupt. Though unremarkable in objective terms, their apparantly undistinguished lives are the stuff of epic drama, of archetypal conflict and painful struggle. One of the two women is the classic PKD calculating bitch, but the other is a rarity among all his work, a simple unassuming spirit of gentleness and compassion. This novel is, I think, the most thoroughly "mainstream" of his mainstream novels. A straight forward story -- plainly told, but not without subtlety. {Andy Watson}

PKDS-20 10:

Martinez Roca in Spain is going to bring out a translation of PUTTERING ABOUT IN A SMALL LAND.

PKDS-24 11: NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR shared the 1989 Gilgamesh Award for Best SF Novel (for works first appearing in Spanish in 1988) with George R.R. Martin's Tuf Voyaging and Jack Vances's The Demon Princes. There was also a special award given to Ediciones Alcor for its publication of PUTTERING ABOUT.

PKDS-26 4:

Ray Nelson, who collaborated with Dick on THE GANYMEDE TAKEOVER, says PKD pandered to the market in an effort to sell his stories. For example: "PUTTERING ABOUT IN A SMALL LAND gets a new ending. The original ended at the end of Chapter 20 with the words, 'It would bother me,' plus a little 'moving vehicle' coda, now lost. Now the hero's mean wife demands the hero's store -- and gets it. Two new chapters give the hero a new lease on life an a car load of TV sets to sell.


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