Blade Runner Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Blade Runner

Blade Runner the film, the superb sci-fi Frankensteinian futurescape has given this book a new lease of life, as well as a new cover. The 1968 book inspired the film, however the book is far less competent. The plot revolves around a bounty hunter, who terminates androids. The healthy folks have fled planet Earth in the aftermath of a nuclear war, Mars being the romantic destination. The androids, virtual physical replicas of humans, are the new slave class. Perhaps the question behind it all is 'if God created man in His image, what happens when man creates in his image?'. The answer is not an encouraging one: it also has renewed pertinence at this time, in the light of the current Human Genome Project and our nascent cloning technology. Sadly the bitter tone of this book lacks depth, and is devoid of hope or feelgood factor. The plot also fails to integrate the many inventive themes such as the fake religion, and the false hope of the 'mood organ', an instant brain-fix machine. The men come over as convincing characters, but the females rather less so. To be fair, the book's great invention is the 'empathy test', which distinguishes between androids and humans. It is used well in the book, and they also honed it to a keen edge in the film.
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The review of this Book prepared by Michael JR Jose

Chapter Analysis of Blade Runner

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book    -   depressing/sad FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   science fiction story Spying & Investigations    -   Yes What is main char. doing?    -   finding a killer (criminal) Repressive society story    -   Yes Repressive because:    -   controls your mind Story involving clones/duplicates?    -   bad clones/duplicates Lifeform altered?    -   Yes Kind of alteration:    -   Scientifically turned into another lifeform Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Clones    -   Yes Who's a slave/repressed?    -   humans are slaves of other humans

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Profession/status:    -   bounty hunter Age:    -   20's-30's If magical mental powers:    -   can read emotions


Earth setting:    -   medium future 22-24th century Takes place on Earth?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment scientific jargon? (SF only)    -   none/very little science jargon needed How much dialogue?    -   significantly more descript than dialog

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Philip K. Dick Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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