Thumbs down for Martian Time-Slip by Philip K. Dick. Science fiction.
Oh God. I could not wait for this book to be over; I thought I had slipped into a time loop of my own when it would not end. I grant you, there is a good idea in here – for a 50-page novella. Unfortunately, the edition I read came to 220 pages of small type. Every time I picked it up I could feel my apathy towards it and its boring, largely stereotypical characters welling up like mushrooms in the dark. Now enough said, and here’s one of the two paragraphs that I liked:
Several times he had visited the Public School with his son. That was different. David was at the top of his class, attending the most advanced teaching machines along the route. He stayed late, making the most of the tutorial system of which the UN was so proud. Looking at his watch, Jack saw that it was ten o’clock. At this moment, as he recalled from his visits and from his son’s accounts, David was with the Aristotle, learning the rudiments of science, philosophy, logic, grammar, poetics, and an archaic physics. Of all the teaching machines, David seemed to derive the most from the Aristotle, which was a relief; many of the children preferred the more dashing teachers at the School: Sir Francis Drake (English history, fundamentals of masculine civility) or Abraham Lincoln (United States history, basics of modern warfare and the contemporary state) or such grim personages as Julius Caesar and Winston Churchill. He himself had been born too soon to take advantage of the tutorial school system, he had gone to classes as a boy where he sat with sixty other children, and later, in high school, he had found himself listening and watching an instructor speaking over closed-circuit TV along with a class of a thousand. If, however, he had been allowed into the new school, he could readily have located his own favorite: on a visit with David, on the first parent-teacher day in fact, he had seen the Thomas Edison Teaching Machine, and that was enough for him. It took David almost an hour to drag his father away.
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