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Foster, You’re Dead! by Philip K. Dick

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Foster, you’re Dead by Philip K. Dick is a short science fiction story which tells us the story of Foster and his everyday life in a climate of growing paranoia in the US, where the Red Scare dictates almost every aspect of everyday life.

Non-Spoiler summary:

Foster is a young boy, who only wants one thing for his birthday: a nuclear bunker. Everyone else in the neighborhood has one, you see, except for him. His friends keep telling him he’s gonna die when the Reds drop the bomb. His teachers constantly scold him for failing his nuclear readiness exercises. On the TV, the Reds keep coming up with new, deadlier weapons every week.

Well, Foster’s had enough. He’s tired of being scared. He’s gonna do whatever it takes. He’s gonna scream, he’s gonna cry, he’s gonna cuss and plead, till he gets that bunker.

My thoughts while reading it:

‘What the hell, that’s no way to talk to a kid!’ ‘You shove that bunker where the sun don’t shine, Mrs Carlyle!’ ‘The Reds made a WHAT?’ ‘Dude, buy the damn bunker, it’s for your own safety!’ ‘Yaaaay!’ ‘Aaaawww’

The technical stuff:

  • Word Count: 7,000 words
  • Philip Kindred Dick (December 16, 1928 – March 2, 1982) was an American novelist, short story writer and essayist whose published work is almost entirely in the science fiction genre. Go check your dad’s old stash of scifi books. The best ones are probably written by this guy.

Where you can find it:

  • In his collected works anthology The Father-Thing (available in every online bookstore worth its salt)
  • This story is currently not available online. Which means you’re gonna have to buy it. And trust me, this is a sound investment

Konstantine Paradias is a short story science fiction and fantasy writer, who has his own blog, called Shapescapes. There you can find a free novel, called Stone Cold Countenance as well as a series of sci-fi comic book reviews. For comments, requests or plain old contact, you can find him at


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