I read this in the 1990s, I think as a paperback. Aliens have taken over Earth. The main character lives with the aliens and does not consider himself as human, but as an oddly shaped alien. Somehow, he winds up in contact with some of the humans who are in rebellion, including an awkward sex scene where I remember the female kept referring to his "joystick". He learns how the humans are kept as livestock, involving what is essentially a pithing operation to ensure that they don't have higher brain function. For some reason, I want to say that either he or the aliens liken the livestock humans to pigs. The only other detail I remember is it being established that ruins of the major cities such as New York are now underwater... he's with the rebel female at the time, but I'm not certain if they're still in the alien ship, or if they're in their own ship.

I know that this is not I, Weapon which has a similar concept of humans raised as livestock, but a wholly different plotline.

  • Since this is science fiction, I guess I need to ask: the "ships" mentioned in the last sentence of the description are seagoing vessels, not spaceships, right?
    – user14111
    Commented Oct 13, 2016 at 22:28
  • Good point. I don't remember for certain... I want to say that the alien ships are all flying vehicles, but the rebel ship might have just been a sailing ship.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Oct 14, 2016 at 2:19
  • 2
    Damn, I swear I've seen this book... the title was something similar to "disobedient" or "ungrateful"...
    – Yasskier
    Commented Oct 14, 2016 at 2:33
  • Sounds similar to Alien invasion harvests humanity as food/pets
    – Zommuter
    Commented Oct 14, 2016 at 13:12
  • @Zommuter: Indeed, but the gender of the protagonist is different, they're not flayed, and the current answers don't match up to my memories.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Oct 14, 2016 at 13:17

3 Answers 3


I am 99% certain that this is Frederick Pohl's Homegoing, also described in this answer. It has the created human, the flooded Earth, and the joystick reference, plus it's just sparking memories.

She became more clinical still. “Do the male Hakh’hli have the same kind of joystick you do?”
He flushed, unwilling to believe he understood her. “Joystick?”
“All right. The same kind of penis, then.”

I have not had a chance to reread the book to find out if the taking over or the livestock is accurate from my memories. I think I may be misremembering the plot point of Sandy's origin and the pithing of the hoo’hik.


Is it 'The Wild Boy' by Warren Rochelle?

The Lindauzi came to Earth at the turn of the millennium with a mission to breed humans to become their emotional symbionts. Technically superior, within a generation the Lindauzi dominate the Earth, running a breeding program designed to produce humans capable of full emotional symbiosis. This is the story of Ilox, a human raised by the Lindauzi, his banishment and adoption by a tribe of wild humans, and his eventual reunion with his Lindauzi bond-mate, Phlarx.

  • I'm afraid not. I read this in the 1990s, and that book was published in 2001.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Oct 14, 2016 at 2:18

Gordon R. Dickson’s 1987 novel, Way of the Pilgrim, has the Aalaag race who thought of humans as their cattle. Human Aalaag interpreter Shane was recruited by a woman to help overthrow the invaders.

  • I've requested a copy, but I'm mildly doubtful based on what I read in the original short story, "Enter the Pilgrim".
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Feb 9, 2017 at 13:21

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