The best "paranoid science fiction" books

Philip K. Dick is the unbeatable master of modern "paranoid science fiction," stories that screw with subjective reality through themes like psychological manipulation, madness, and power dynamics. After reading Dick's classics like "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" (which of course was adapted to become Blade Runner), "Flow My Tears, The Policeman Said," and "Ubik," where should you go next? Authors Silvia Moreno-Garcia and Lavie Tidhar make some recommendations in the Washington Post:

Silvia: …Nick Mamatas's "The Second Shooter" (2021) is the perfect novel for people who like "Twin Peaks" and "The X-Files." It's the grimy tale of a writer penning a book about the "second shooter" phenomenon: witnesses of assassinations claiming they saw an unidentified second attacker. Mamatas has a firm grip on contemporary culture and conspiracy theories and an even firmer understanding of the morally dubious losers who make noir worth reading. Even without a speculative element, it would still be a good book, but the bizarreness the main character discovers places it firmly in paranoid Philip K. Dick territory[…]

Lavie: [Boris and Arkady Strugatsky's] 1970 novel "The Dead Mountaineer's Inn," translated by Josh Billings in a Melville House edition in 2015, is another must-have. It begins as an Agatha Christie-like whodunit, but then things get weird.

If you're eagerly anticipating the series "Shining Girls," starring Elisabeth Moss, the novel it's based on, by South African author Lauren Beukes — about a time-travelling serial killer set in Chicago — is as good as you'd expect. 

"If you love 'Blade Runner' and 'The X-Files,' these books are for you" (Washington Post)

image: cover art from PKD's "Flow My Tears, The Policeman Said" (DAW Books, 1975 edition)