The Android’s Dream is a science-fiction comedy (like Scalzi’s previous Agent to the Stars). There has been a diplomatic incident with the Nidu, a race of not-that-powerful-but-still-more-powerful-than-Earth aliens, and war looms on the horizon – unless a specimen of a rare variety of sheep can be found. Harry Creek, a mid-level State department bureaucrat and war veteran, is tasked with getting to the bottom of the events.
The best word to describe this book is a “romp”. There are layered conspiracies, refreshingly practical religious zealots, artificial intelligences, and a lot more. The tone of the book reminded me of a (revived) Doctor Who episode – lots of witty banter and ridiculousness, some heart and a deus ex machina resolution that you don’t really want to look at closely.
I liked this book fairly well, but I prefer Scalzi’s more serious books – the Old Man’s War books, Fuzzy Nation and Redshirts. I hear that The God Engines is his least comedic work, so I’m pretty excited about reading that one someday too.
- “Twenty-First Century Science Fiction” edited by David G. Hartwell and Patrick Nielsen Hayden
- “Fortune’s Pawn” by Rachel Bach