Deadly Image - Edmund Cooper - 1958 Ballantine Paperback Edition

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Why this book matters: This is a 1958 vintage paperback. From a review: “Edmund Cooper's first novel, Deadly Image (aka The Uncertain Midnight), was completed in 1957 and published in 1958. The book is significant -with emphasis- in the science fiction genre. Not only that it's a good book and carries with it several elements that will evolve into the author's trademark writing, but it is mostly likely the first book to discuss the subject of androids and the theme of what it means to be human. The novel came out at the same time of the more famous author Isaac Asimov's 'Robot' book, The Naked Sun, which similarly depicts a world where robots or androids outnumber humans. Deadly Image, though, focuses on a theme specifically of human and android, the exact same theme later repeated in the more famous novel by Philip K. Dick, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1968). A matter of fact, the following description also perfectly applies for Cooper's book as stated on Wikipedia as in regard to the Dick book,

The novel explores a number of philosophical issues including what it is to be human. By introducing organic and realistically humanoid androids in this novel, Dick[Cooper:] asks what qualities, if any, are unique to or are able to define what is human.”

Publisher Blurb: “He was an anachronism... He was a twentieth century man who, by a freak of chance, survived to see an age in which working had become a social disgrace; an age in which culture and the arts reigned supreme; an age of mannered ladies and gentlemen, perfectly waited on and cared for by androids - the man-like creations of their own genius. The higher grade androids were doctors, engineers, politicians and personal "companions" to each and every human being. And in whatever they did, they were perfect. No one had to worry about them. For the first time in history, man had completely freed himself from the problems of living: EXCEPT... When perfect machines, with perfect performance, are made to perfectly resemble man - who needs man?”