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Philip K Dick inspires "bizarre science" for Oneworld

Oneworld has acquired a “bizarre science” non-fiction title to tie into the 30th anniversary of the death of science fiction author Philip K Dick.

Senior commissioning editor Robin Dennis acquired UK rights in Losing the Head of Philip K Dick—A Bizarre but True Tale of Androids, Kill Switches, and Left Luggage by David Dufty from Euan Thorneycroft at A M Heath on behalf of the Mary Cunane Agency.

The book details Dufty's post-doctoral research and adventures in robotics. He was a post-doctoral fellow at the university which created an android of the author of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? which had a face modeled on the author's and was programmed with his key phrases. On the way to Google headquarters, one of the scientists left the android's head in an aeroplane's overhead locker.

Dennis said: “This is bizarre science at its best—from the formula for making fake flesh ‘Frubber’ skin to the moment the android suggests his surroundings are part of a government conspiracy. You have to read it to believe it—this stranger-than-science-fiction tale is all true."

Rights have also been placed with Melbourne University Press (Australia, published earlier this year), Henry Holt and Company (USA), and Fanucci (Italy).

The title will be published on 2nd March 2012, also tying into the 50th anniversary of the publication of Dick’s first short story.