Dying Inside, Robert Silverberg's portrait of a sad man in 1970s New York is a soft sci-fi classic. Meaning, there are no scientific explanations for the other wordly things that take place in the story, the only other worldly element protagonist David Selig's telepathic abilities.
Reading minds has been a part of his life since the day he was born, sometimes causing heartache (like when he sees the loathing and disgust and hatred some people feel towards him); other times it brings him joy and ecstasy or, at the very least, allows him to get girls to sleep with him regularly. Selig is a weak man who's amazing gift has been squandered and eventually begins to fade, posing a number of questions anyone could ask of themselves.
What makes me me? Without certain talents or attributes that degrade with age am I still me? Have my abilities been utilized to their greatest effect? Silverberg was a prolific writer and I plan to read many more of his works–I think that the “sci-fi” brand has prevented him from being considered one of literature's great talents and I hope it won't stop you from trying this thoughtful and insightful novel.