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Bradbury Ray (2017 Most Popular Book Lists)

$10.77
1. Bradbury Stories: 100 of His Most
$19.44
2. The Stories of Ray Bradbury (Everyman's
3. The Playground
$9.62
4. The October Country
$3.22
5. The Bradbury Chronicles: The Life
$5.95
6. The Martian Chronicles
$1.78
7. Bradbury Classic Stories 1: From
$10.25
8. Dandelion Wine
$2.50
9. From the Dust Returned
$8.82
10. Zen in the Art of Writing: Essays
$11.67
11. Listen to the Echoes: The Ray
$1.47
12. Quicker than the Eye
$2.65
13. Fahrenheit 451
$4.00
14. A Sound of Thunder and Other Stories
$10.00
15. Something Wicked This Way Comes
$7.87
16. Fahrenheit 451.
$6.94
17. A Medicine for Melancholy and
$9.66
18. The Illustrated Man
$7.49
19. Death Is a Lonely Business
$6.00
20. Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451:

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1. Bradbury Stories: 100 of His Most Celebrated Tales
by Ray Bradbury
Paperback: 912 Pages (2005-04-01)
list price: US$17.99 -- used & new: US$10.77
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0060544880
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

*****

For more than sixty years, the imagination of Ray Bradbury has opened doors into remarkable places, ushering us across unexplored territories of the heart and mind while leading us inexorably toward a profound understanding of ourselves and the universe we inhabit. In this landmark volume, America's preeminent storyteller offers us one hundred treasures from a lifetime of words and ideas. The stories within these pages were chosen by Bradbury himself, and span a career that blossomed in the pulp magazines of the early 1940s and continues to flourish in the new millennium. Here are representatives of the legendary author's finest works of short fiction, including many that have not been republished for decades, all forever fresh and vital, evocative and immensely entertaining.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (22)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
I bought this book for a gift for my best friend and it was in awesome condition and a great price.

5-0 out of 5 stars Bradbury stories
been looking for years for a volumn like this..worth the money FL

4-0 out of 5 stars Somewhat disappointing
I keep trying to enjoy Raw Bradbury, but I continue to be disappointed.Oh well...

4-0 out of 5 stars Caveat Emptor
The two stories I really wanted to read and assumed would be included, The Sound of Thunder and Something Wicked This Way Comes, are NOT in this vast collection.

5-0 out of 5 stars Another great one by Bradbury
Here's another must have for all you Bradbury fans. I never tire of him and this is another of his superb collections. ... Read more


2. The Stories of Ray Bradbury (Everyman's Library (Cloth))
by Ray Bradbury
Hardcover: 1112 Pages (2010-04-06)
list price: US$32.00 -- used & new: US$19.44
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0307269051
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

*****
One hundred of Ray Bradbury’s remarkable stories which have, together with his classic novels, earned him an immense international audience and his place among the most imaginative and enduring writers of our time.

Here are the Martian stories, tales that vividly animate the red planet, with its brittle cities and double-mooned sky. Here are the stories that speak of a special nostalgia for Green Town, Illinois, the perfect setting for a seemingly cloudless childhood—except for the unknown terror lurking in the ravine. Here are the Irish stories and the Mexican stories, linked across their separate geographies by Bradbury’s astonishing inventiveness. Here, too, are thrilling, terrifying stories—including “The Veldt” and “The Fog Horn”—perfect for reading under the covers.

Read for the first time, these stories become as unshakable as one’s own fantasies. Read again—and again—they reveal new, dazzling facets of the extraordinary art of Ray Bradbury.Amazon.com Review
The Stories of Ray Bradbury--a hundred of his best stories, selectedby the author himself--is the definitive collection of one of the greatestfantasists the world has ever known. Published in 1980, the volume containsstories selected from the first four decades of Bradbury's career. Thereare his unique stories of Mars, which later landed in The Martian Chronicles.There are nostalgic stories of Green Town, Illinois, which Bradbury laterbrewed into DandelionWine. The treasures here also include his regional tales ofIreland and of rural Mexico, classic science fiction such as "The FogHorn," and the rarely reprinted novella "Frost and Fire." Among the halfdozen previously uncollected stories are a few of his earliest--and mostterrifying. These include the unforgettable "October Game" (which theauthor regards as perhaps his most shocking story amongst the thousand thathe's written), and "Black Ferris," later to be transformed into the classicSomething Wicked This WayComes. Bradbury also contributes a revealing and highly informativelook back at his own career. If you can possess only one book by thelegendary Ray Bradbury, this is it. --Stanley Wiater ... Read more

Customer Reviews (21)

5-0 out of 5 stars Make a spot on your shelf for this new collection of Bradbury's Stories
A master of his craft, Ray Bradbury was awarded the National Book Foundation's 2000 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters and the National Medal of Arts in 2004. This new collection, //The Stories of Ray Bradbury// with a very witty introduction by Christopher Buckley, contains a thorough chronology of the author's life, stories, and the historic and literary events which were occurring concurrently. It reprints the favorites, including "There will Come Soft Rains," "The Long Rain" "All Summer in a Day," and "The Veldt." In all, there are one hundred stories in this collection that will remind fans of Bradbury and why they flock to him, and it will induce first time readers to join the club. He remains one of the most imaginative and enduring writers of all time.

Reviewed by: Robin Martin

5-0 out of 5 stars These are the essential stories
There are many other compilations of Bradbury's wonderful work, including a recent one, "Bradbury Stories," but this book, originally published in 1980, is the best by far. It has over 900 pages, 100 selections by the master himself, and several previously uncollected works. Unfortunately out of print, it is still available used from a number of sellers.

"The Stories of Ray Bradbury" brings together the most intriguing, moving, frightening, and haunting tales from the many story collections the author has assembled over his career. Stories come from "The Martian Chronicles," "The Illustrated Man," "Dandelion Wine," "Something Wicked This Way Comes," "The Golden Apples of the Sun," "R Is for Rocket,"and other books. Nearly all of your favorite tales are here: "A Sound of Thunder," "The Veldt," "There Will Come Soft Rains," "The Fog Horn," "The Long Rain," "I Sing the Body Electric," and many more. My highest recommendation.

5-0 out of 5 stars Why not go for a double.
What can I say about this collection, except that is essential reading for anyone serious about Science Fiction or Fantasy as a form of literature (that's right I said it-the dreaded "l" word)Bradbury has piled up enough superlatives in his life that I don't think I need to go into them.

Anyway, this is a book of Ray Bradbury's greatest stories, which means that these are some of the best stories that imaginative literature has to offer.Why not make it a two-fer and get the "Bradbury Stories" collection with it?Both are worthy, think of "The Stories of Ray Bradbury" is the top shelf A-list stuff, and "Bradbury Stories" is the Solid B list collection.Still great, and best of all, no repeat stories in the two collections!The man was so prolific that he could probably fill up a third volume with no repeats as well...

5-0 out of 5 stars The stories create powerful virtual images
It is hard to categorize Ray Bradbury as a writer. To many he is known as a science fiction writer, largely due to "The Martian Chronicles." However, he is much more versatile than that, his stories cover many different themes of life, death and strange things in between.
When I was in high school, my favorite story was "The Veldt", where a couple purchase a high quality virtual reality room for their children. However, rather than experience normal children's playrooms, they prefer constant scenes of an African veldt, complete with lions who hunt and kill their prey. The parents try to put a stop to it, but their children whine until they get to keep the veldt. However, the parents finally decide to stand firm and are going to shut the room off. At this time, the room comes alive and the lions kill and devour their parents. I considered this story so good that I must have read it at least twenty times during afternoon study hall. The imagery that the story conjures up is almost visual, which I find is a characteristic of so many of Bradbury's stories.
He is the best writer I have encountered in putting down words in a simple style that still manages to generate tremendous virtual images in your mind. This book is a collection of his short stories and I have read this book at least three times and most of the stories in it in other collections at least twice. Even after all these readings, they are still wonderful, as the images are different each time. Most stories by other writers keep my attention when I first read them, but I find them boring if I try to read them again. It does not seem that that will ever happen with Bradbury stories, which is why I strongly recommend this book.

4-0 out of 5 stars An Average Collection.
If you buy this book with the newer Bradbury collection, you will have a fairly comprehensive collection of short stories by the master. This collection is not the best. It has it's share of mediocre stories, but even so the great stories are wonderful. "The Veldt", "The Fog Horn", and "The Jar" are my absolute favorites, but there are more gems scattered about the book.


As others have pointed out, it is a tad bit dated. (One of the stories talks about the year 2003). So if you want more up to date stories the newer volume is better. All in all, some interesting stories, but not essential reading. ... Read more


3. The Playground
by Ray Bradbury
Kindle Edition: Pages (2010-07-01)
list price: US$2.99
Asin: B003XVYLEO
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

*****
The Playground: Ray Bradbury's terrifying short story, one of the great stories of childhood-as-nightmare, appeared originally in Esquire in October l953; it first appeared in book form in the Ballantine first issue of his famous novel, Fahrenheit 451. Charles Underhill, seeking to protect his young son from the agonies of schoolyard bullying in the playground makes a deal with the playground's mysterious manager but only at the end discovers the true nature of the pact. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Hairy scary
I have always loved Ray Bradbury and have never read this short story. I loved it. It was so "Twilight Zone". I read it at night on my Kindle and was a little disturbed/scared with the ending. I wish Kindle had more stories by Ray Bradbury. I would read all of them but maybe not at night.

5-0 out of 5 stars Classic and Vivid
I remember seeing the television version of this short Bradbury story on his RB Theater series. Although it was comical to see Shatner in the role, as the father, it was still extremely scary, although a different twist in the end compared to the written story. The story is also frightening, but much more human, and of course, Bradbury's style of writing makes you taste, smell, feel, hear every scene he exposes... Definitely good stuff, I've downloaded the rest of his Kindle available works(although some have frequent typos on the Kindle, which should be corrected).

3-0 out of 5 stars Whither Jim?
Still dealing with the recent death of his wife, Charles Underhill becomes so overprotective of his son, Jim, that he forbids him from going to the playground.

This basic storyline belies a more common tale: the all-too-human willingness to make a pact with the devil (real or imagined). In this case, Underhill's motives appear to be selfless; he is reluctant to expose Jim to the neighborhood bullies. In fact, he would have his son miss any of the traumas of childhood altogether; "he knew what it was to be a boy among lions . . . and now he could not bear to think of Jim's going through it all." It is a sentiment to which any parent can relate, and Bradbury captures it perfectly. While investigating the park and worrying over what's right for his son, Underhill is directed to the "Manager's office," where he learns of the Faustian bargain that forms the story's climax.

While tightly constructed, Bradbury's prose seems more pedestrian here than in many of his other works, and the story's premise (and twist) are what you'd expect from the a less memorable Twilight Zone episode. But its true weakness is Underhill's (and Bradbury's) seeming lack of concern, in the end, for the son. Grief certainly distorts Underhill's judgment, but we are led to believe that he acts primarily out of love and fear for Jim. Yet when Underhill makes the "leap," Bradbury omits the far more interesting implication of his tale: Whither Jim?

A cynic would argue that Underhill's son gets the worst of the deal. What happens to Underhill is, quite literally, kids' stuff. The true nightmare happens to Jim, but Bradbury hints otherwise--and I find not only hard to fathom, but inconsistent with the rest of the story. The overall effect is that Bradbury has told only half of his disturbing and imaginative tale. ... Read more


4. The October Country
by Ray Bradbury, Joe Mugnaini
Hardcover: 352 Pages (1999-09-01)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$9.62
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380973871
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

*****
Welcome to a land Ray Bradbury calls "the Undiscovered Country" of his imagination--that vast territory of ideas, concepts, notions and conceits where the stories you now hold were born. America's premier living author of short fiction, Bradbury has spent many lifetimes in this remarkable place--strolling through empty, shadow-washed fields at midnight; exploring long-forgotten rooms gathering dust behind doors bolted years ago to keep strangers locked out.. and secrets locked in. The nights are longer in this country. The cold hours of darkness move like autumn mists deeper and deeper toward winter. But the moonlight reveals great magic here--and a breathtaking vista.

The October Country is many places: a picturesque Mexican village where death is a tourist attraction; a city beneath the city where drowned lovers are silently reunited; a carnival midway where a tiny man's most cherished fantasy can be fulfilled night after night. The October Country's inhabitants live, dream, work, die--and sometimes live again--discovering, often too late, the high price of citizenship. Here a glass jar can hold memories and nightmares; a woman's newborn child can plot murder; and a man's skeleton can war against him. Here there is no escaping the dark stranger who lives upstairs...or the reaper who wields the world. Each of these stories is a wonder, imagined by an acclaimed tale-teller writing from a place shadows. But there is astonishing beauty in these shadows, born from a prose that enchants and enthralls. Ray Bradbury's The October Country is a land of metaphors that can chill like a long-after-midnight wind...as they lift the reader high above a sleeping Earth on the strange wings of Uncle Einar.

Amazon.com Review
Ray Bradbury's first short story collection is back in print,its chilling encounters with funhouse mirrors, parasiticaccident-watchers, and strange poker chips intact. Both sides ofBradbury's vaunted childhood nostalgia are also on display, in thecelebratory "Uncle Einar," and haunting "TheLake," the latter a fine elegy to childhood loss. This editionfeatures a new introduction by Bradbury, an invaluable essay onwriting, wherein the author tells of his "Theater of MorningVoices," and, by inference, encourages you to listen to the samemurmurings in yourself. And has any writer anywhere ever made suchgood use of exclamation marks!? ... Read more

Customer Reviews (41)

3-0 out of 5 stars A Sci-fi reader's must
The darkly fascinating tales in this collection both entrance and repugn. They will keep you awake for hours, deliberating on what they reveal of the nature of our world. They will give you nightmares. They will give you hope. They will make you consider how you live your life. Ray Bradbury is one of the best science fiction authors I have read. And, though these are not science fiction, they are among the best short stories of any kind that I have read.

5-0 out of 5 stars Incomparable, deathless cover art for a deathless anthology
I first read October Country in October of 1962 and have never parted with my yellowing original copy. No Bradbury book -- novel or short story anthology-- has ever better encapsulated this remarkably individual talent, one of our greatest "artful naif" story-tellers, and the original cover art provided with this edition seems, even after all these many years, to fit the stories contained inside with a unique and preternatural appositeness. It's one of the great book covers of all time.

1-0 out of 5 stars The October Country
The book I recieved is in poor quality. Some pages fell off as I was flipping through it. The book cover is not the same as shown in the website. I think the seller should re-send me a better quality book with no expense.
Thanks,
Peter Chou

5-0 out of 5 stars Still Chills After Fifty Years
Adapted from ISawLightningFall.blogspot.com

Autumn is the season that draws me back to my central-Kentucky childhood. Back then, the daytime temperature would hover just above freezing point, the sun a warm disc in the chill blue sky. Leaves would slowly shift to orange and ochre and brown before cascading down in piles that reached your knees. The air smelled of cider, and you could always find pumpkins -- lined for purchase in fields, in stacks at the grocery, by every front door. Nights were different. The cold came down like a hammer. It stiffened the leaves into parchment and brittled the grass with frost. Wind would moan around the eaves like an afflicted spirit. As the season crawled near to winter, I'd wake to find the water in the horses' paddocks frozen like a stone. Autumn was a thing of beauty and eeriness, as is Ray Bradbury's short-story collection The October Country.

Nearly all of the material tilts toward horror, although it's an older kind that's unafraid to commingle sentiment and scares. Many of the stories are one-weird-idea tales, throwing an intentional kink in the order of things. In "The Scythe," a migrant farmer inherits a field of grain from a stranger, along with a sickle on which is engraved "Who Wields Me -- Wields the World!" He discovers too late why the wheat ripens in patches, why there's just enough for him to cut each day, and why it springs up again soon after he slices it down. "Skeleton" features a nervous hypochondriac whose bones might be rebelling against him or who may be in thrall to a sinister physician. Another doctor inadvertently aids "The Small Assassin" -- a newborn with the facilities of an adult and murder on his mind. A youngster dispatches a vampire residing in his grandmother's boarding house ("The Man Upstairs") and a newly married man reconnects with a long-lost love decades after her drowning ("The Lake").

While the collection contains more than a few spooky tropes, many of the shorts avoid the supernatural, focusing instead on the dreams and darknesses within the human heart. There is "The Dwarf" who nightly ventures through a circus hall of mirrors to watch his reflection stretch and elongate. A lonely Louisiana bumpkin becomes the center of small-town life when brings home "The Jar," in which floats a shrunken, pickled thing that might have once been human. Both light-hearted and gruesome, "The Watchful Poker Chip of H. Matisse" finds a boorish fellow becoming the cynosure of an avart-garde movement. When his admirers' interest begins to slacken, he decides to make his body into a work of art. Two retired life-insurance salesmen try to save future murderees from self-destruction ("Touched With Fire").

Not all of the stories work. There are plots that fail to gain traction ("The Next in Line") and characters flatter than the paper they're printed on ("The Cistern"). Interesting conceits get sidelined by swathes of expository dialogue ("The Wind"). The cheery tone and gushing prose of the final story, "The Wonderful Death of Dudley Stone," clashes with the others. But these are minor quibbles. Over fifty years after its original publication, The October Country can still chill, whether it's autumn or high summer.

4-0 out of 5 stars Not Free SF Reader
A collection of creepy horror, in the majority, with the odd other story.Right on the consistent Bradbury sort of average score for me, and happily lacking in the overly twee mainstream stories.

So, very good examples of his fantasy work, or dark fantasy, or whatever you would like to call it.

October Country : The Dwarf - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Next in Line - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Watchful Poker Chip of H. Matisse - Ray Bradbury
October Country : Skeleton - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Jar - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Lake - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Emissary - Ray Bradbury
October Country : Touched with Fire - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Small Assassin - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Crowd - Ray Bradbury
October Country : Jack-in-the-Box - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Scythe - Ray Bradbury
October Country : Uncle Einar - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Wind - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Man Upstairs - Ray Bradbury
October Country : There Was an Old Woman - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Cistern - Ray Bradbury
October Country : Homecoming - Ray Bradbury
October Country : The Wonderful Death of Dudley Stone - Ray Bradbury



3.5 out of 5 ... Read more


5. The Bradbury Chronicles: The Life of Ray Bradbury (P.S.)
by Sam Weller
Paperback: 432 Pages (2006-03-01)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$3.22
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0060545844
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****

Accomplished journalist Sam Weller met the Ray Bradbury while writing a cover story for the Chicago Tribune Magazine and spent hundreds of hours interviewing Bradbury, his editors, family members, and longtime friends. With unprecedented access to private archives, he uncovered never–before–published letters, documents, and photographs that help tell the story of this literary genius and his remarkable creative journey. The result is a richly textured, detailed biography that illuminates the origins and accomplishments of Bradbury's fascinating mind.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (18)

4-0 out of 5 stars Bradbury, his work and influences
This book outlines Ray Bradbury's career, from his early beginnings in pulp style fiction to his more mainstream style stories, from story writer to novel writer, including commentary about his most famous works. The constant with Bradbury is his knack for writing story's that are a bit off the beaten track and have a science fiction edge to them, although, as the book often notes, Bradbury wanted to be considered a fantasy writer and escape the science fiction label . Bradbury was quite inspired by his hometown in Illinois, and made a point to make his childhood memories a recurring theme in his tales (Dandelion Wine is one book that references his hometown). There is also a sentimentality and human condition to his imaginary tales that you might not find in other writers of a similar genre. There is also a carnivalesque, fantasy angle to many of his books and writings. This biography also gives background into Ray's influences, and the people--writers, editors, celebrities--that he met along his way to being a writer.

One interesting aspect is just the influences that Bradbury had. Bradbury describes seeing Lon Chaney in The Phantom of the Opera as a youngster and being "hooked" into what the actor could create. This really translates to Bradbury's stories, as we can see the workings of him creating the fantastic in his stories.

The chapter on his great novel Fahrenheit 451 is fascinating, as you are given a glimpse into Bradbury's angle for making this classic happen, and find out some information that you might not have otherwise known. It sort of takes a "behind the scenes" approach to the author, his rational for his writings, and the many people he met along the way.

Another interesting chapter is the one which went into the particulars of John Huston asking Bradbury to write the screenplay for Moby Dick. As Bradbury and Huston were vastly different personalities, the chapter is particularly candid about the riff between the sensitive Bradbury and the macho, tough-guy Huston. Huston's brash humor never really gelled with Bradbury, and there is a rather uncomfortable moment described when Bradbury confronts his "hero", who had insulted his friends during a dinner.Bradbury's vision to make this film a success put a good deal of strain on him and his family, even though he was seemingly doing something that he could hardly imagine or fathom: writing a screenplay for one of the biggest names in films.

One problem with the book was that, at times, there is an overabundance of trivial detail that might have been left out, especially about the author's life. I know the author is building up to a point and trying to establish certain aspects of the author's life, but some detail put in was a little too much filler. Also, the author doesn't try to be objective reporting about Bradbury's life; instead, he is a bit too praiseworthy and complementary, not giving any kind of objectivity to the book.

Still, I thought it was mostly a fascinating read. I have always been intrigued with Ray Bradbury, and this book didn't disappoint in that regard.

A must for Bradbury fans!


5-0 out of 5 stars the Bradbury Chronicles
Ray Bradbury was a complex writer as most of us are complex in our own way. I found the book fancinating, as you follow Mr Bradberry through his life, from childhood forward. He knew at an early age that he wanted to be a writer and the book follows his journey. An excellent book about hollywood, stars he met, and the inteweaving of the publishing industry. The focal point is Ray Bradbury and stays true to that course. This is a story about Ray Bradbury, and the pages fly by and is hard to put down.

5-0 out of 5 stars Weller = Medium For the Living
This is everything a true Scion of Bradbury could ever seek in a biography. Weller's writings reminded me of childhood curiosities, idle musings on the nature of my favorite author, and just as he incites such queries, he anticipates and satisfies them within paragraphs. The layout is such to explain the development of Bradbury's indidivual works without disrupting the chronological explanation of a truly unique and significant life. Want to know why Bradbury considers himself a fantasy writer instead of sci/fi, and how he differentiates the two? Curious as to the nature of the police encounter which inspired Fahrenheit 451 (or indeed where Bradbury found the specific temperature?) Whether you grew up on Bradbury or came to know him later in life, this book will enlighten your mind as to the inner workings of one of the greatest authors alive today.

4-0 out of 5 stars Enthusiastic, Excellent Biography
Sam Weller's The Bradbury Chronicles is a well researched, upbeat biography of Ray Bradbury. Weller's enthusiasm is both his strength, and, at times, his weakness. If you're looking for a general overview of Ray Bradbury's life and the things that led him to be a writer, this is an excellent starting place.

The strongest part of the biography is the description of Ray's family history and his early life in Waukegan, Illinois. Weller describes Ray's grandfather's history as a printer and his Aunt Neva's artistic interests as strong influences towards Ray's decision to become a writer. Equally detailed are Ray's teen years when his family moved back and forth from Illinois to Arizona, before finally settling in Los Angeles, California.

L.A. and Hollywood played a huge role in influencing Ray's decision to become a writer. During his teen years, he befriended George Burns and actress Ida Lupino, and he often hung out outside the gates of major studios like Paramount and MGM in order to get autographs from the stars. He was a fan of films and longed to be accepted into the film community.

Of particular interest to me were the years in Ray's life between high school and his early thirties. Weller does an excellent job of describing Ray's early connections in the local sci-fi community in Los Angeles, as well as Ray's trips to the World Science Fiction Convention. We learn how he got an agent and published his first few books.

Where the biography slips a little are the years following Ray's triumphant (though difficult) work with John Huston on the film version of Moby Dick. Weller gives us a general overview of the years between 1955-70, but he flashes forward and back whole decades at a time and the details are not at thorough as in the early part of the book. It makes understanding the sequence of how Ray went from selling a thousand books in 1953 to selling over a million by the early 1970s somewhat difficult to follow.

Weller briefly mentions Ray's two affairs in the 1970s, but always from a fan's perspective. I would have liked to have known a little bit more about Ray in the 1970s and 1980s, particularly as his associations and his reputation grew to international stature, and I wonder if a somewhat critical eye toward his work and life would have served the biography better.

At any rate, this is an excellent introduction to the life of Ray Bradbury. Particular attention was paid to detailing Ray's early life, teen years, and formative years in the business, and I highly recommend The Bradbury Chronicles to anyone interested in a general overview of Ray Bradbury's life and the paths he took to become a great American writer. And, as always, I hope this review is helpful to you!

Stacey Cochran
Author of CLAWS available for 80 Cents

4-0 out of 5 stars Something Adulatory This way Comes
Reading THE BRADBURY CHRONICLES I was struck repeatedly by Sam Weller's insistence that at least part of the reason for Bradbury's success is that he never really hrew up and in some ways always kept the boy inside him alive, so that his reactions are frequently childlike and simple.

Weller's book is best when it illustrates this tendency in Bradbury and also shows how Los Angeles itself remains a child's toy city, filled with wonder and perhaps lacking in shadow.The story of Ray Bradbury is the story of Los Angeles, and the growth of both writer and city have many incisive parallels.No wonder Bradbury found himself drawn into the world of Hollywood and screenwriting.Perhaps no one but him would have the remarkable naivete to even attempt to write a screenplay out of MOBY DICK.

Weller is sort of over the top when it comes to praising Bradbury, who really hadn't written anything all that good in thirty years or more, and yet oddly emough he fails to give proper credit to his last really great project, the screenplay for PICASSO SUMMER, one of the most underrated Hollywood movies of the 1960s.When the film is finally re-released I think its time will come, and it will be recognized as a provocative, adult love story in the mode of TWO FOR THE ROAD or, more recently, Wong Kar Wai's IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE.Odd--paradoxical even--that one of the screen's most adult achievememets was the brainchild of Weller's eternal "puer."

Weller himself is very much like the Sam Weller of THE PICKWICK PAPERS, always optimistic, energetic, a little over his own head, but likable and funny.Could he be using a pseudonym--or did Charles Dickens predict his coming way back when in the 1830s?Ray Bradbury, perhaps, can let us know."A Sound of Pickwick Thunder," perhaps? ... Read more


6. The Martian Chronicles
by Ray Bradbury
Hardcover: 288 Pages (1997-02-01)
list price: US$18.99 -- used & new: US$5.95
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380973839
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****

Man, was a a distant shore, and the men spread upon it in wave... Each wave different, and each wave stronger.

The Martian Chronicles

Ray Bradbury is a storyteller without peer, a poet of the possible, and, indisputably, one of America's most beloved authors. In a much celebrated literary career that has spanned six decades, he has produced an astonishing body of work: unforgettable novels, including Fahrenheit 451 and Something Wicked This Way Comes; essays, theatrical works, screenplays and teleplays; The Illustrated Mein, Dandelion Wine, The October Country, and numerous other superb short story collections. But of all the dazzling stars in the vast Bradbury universe, none shines more luminous than these masterful chronicles of Earth's settlement of the fourth world from the sun.

Bradbury's Mars is a place of hope, dreams and metaphor-of crystal pillars and fossil seas-where a fine dust settles on the great, empty cities of a silently destroyed civilization. It is here the invaders have come to despoil and commercialize, to grow and to learn -first a trickle, then a torrent, rushing from a world with no future toward a promise of tomorrow. The Earthman conquers Mars ... and then is conquered by it, lulled by dangerous lies of comfort and familiarity, and enchanted by the lingering glamour of an ancient, mysterious native race.

Ray Bradbury's The Martian Chronicles is a classic work of twentieth-century literature whose extraordinary power and imagination remain undimmed by time's passage. In connected, chronological stories, a true grandmaster once again enthralls, delights and challenges us with his vision and his heart-starkly and stunningly exposing in brilliant spacelight our strength, our weakness, our folly, and our poignant humanity on a strange and breathtaking world where humanity does not belong.

Amazon.com Review
From "Rocket Summer" to "The Million-Year Picnic," Ray Bradbury's storiesof the colonization of Mars form an eerie mesh of past and future. Writtenin the 1940s, the chronicles drip with nostalgic atmosphere--shady porcheswith tinklingpitchers of lemonade, grandfather clocks,chintz-covered sofas.But longing for this comfortable past provesdangerous in every way to Bradbury's characters--the golden-eyed Martiansas well as the humans. Starting in the far-flung future of 1999,expedition after expedition leaves Earth to investigate Mars.The Martiansguard theirmysteries well, but they are decimated by the diseases that arrive with therockets.Colonists appear, most with ideas no more lofty than starting ahot-dog stand, and with no respect for the culture they've displaced.

Bradbury's quiet exploration of a future that looks so much like the pastis sprinkled with lighter material.In "The Silent Towns," the last man onMars hears the phone ring and ends up on a comical blind date.But inmost of these stories, Bradbury holds up a mirror to humanity that reflectsa shameful treatment of "the other," yielding, time after time, a harvestof loneliness and isolation. Yet the collection ends with hope for renewal,as a colonist family turns away from the demise of the Earth towards a newfuture on Mars. Bradbury is a master fantasist and The MartianChronicles are an unforgettable work of art. --Blaise Selby ... Read more

Customer Reviews (337)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Colonization of Mars
Lofty topics are covered here, within these pages. I would urge, you the reader, to think about the cultural climate at which time this book was written. What is masterful about Bradbury's art is that the highly political issues of civil rights, atomic war, etc. are not so much in the forefront as some of the other readers have led you to believe. The main question of this book, as it is and was with NASA space program is "what of the colonization of mars?" So, there is your task, what is your answer, how do you feel? It is interesting to see where Bradbury's characters end in the grand scheme of things. If you are unsettled by nondescript fanciful creations, let the book unravel some more, don't put it down. All will be explained.

5-0 out of 5 stars An easy read
This is one of Ray Bradbury's best, an easy to read Si-Fi that's not science fiction because Ray Bradbury wrote it. Read it, you'll enjoy the ideas, the scope, and the way words are used.

4-0 out of 5 stars The more you read, the harder it becomes to put down
The Martian Chronicles is a collection of loosely related short stories. The stories are often grim depicting racism, greed and other issues like mans imperialistic nature.

You have to go into this book willing to suspend your belief. Mars is not depicted as the red, barren planet that we know of today. Also, a lot of the plot elements are quite far-fetched, such as a group of average people being able to secretly build a rocket that travels to Mars, or a character that is able to build robots that are copies of humans in just about every way (speech, movement, etc) in a very short period of time. There are many far-fetched ideas strung throughout.

I have to admit when I first started this book I thought it was ridiculous and way too far-fetched. However, as I kept digging in and just accepted this book for what it is I started reading for the underlying message rather than trying to pick the book apart. Once I took a more open-minded approach the book really started to shine. By the time I reached the middle of the book I was finding it increasingly harder to put down.

The Martian Chronicles is currently my favorite Bradbury book which I highly recommend; you just have to be willing to open your mind a bit. If you are stuck on hard sci-fi then this book is probably not for you.

3-0 out of 5 stars Father Mars arose from the snow-topped crag of Mount Haemus
This is more along the lines of bunch of short stories in chronological order. I would love to give this book 4 stars but some of the stories were terrible, they didn't make sense and hard to follow.

Yet their were a couple like "Usher II"and "Way in the Middle of the Air" that were amazing, some really good stuff. "While The Silent Towns" had me laughing out loud.

If you don't mind trying to make sense of the other ones. But all mean help yourself some hidden treasures

4-0 out of 5 stars same book wrong cover
The book was in excellent condition, but the cover shown was orange, like the one i was looking for,but the one i got was a newer updated cover. would have liked to have the one that was pictured ... Read more


7. Bradbury Classic Stories 1: From the Golden Apples of the Sun and R Is for Rocket (Grand Master Editions)
by Ray Bradbury
Mass Market Paperback: 368 Pages (1990-04-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$1.78
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0553286374
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

*****
These strange and wonderful tales of beauty and terror will transport the reader from the light to the dark, from inner space to the infinite, from the beginnings of time to the outermost limits of the future. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

3-0 out of 5 stars Worse condition
This item came to me in worse shape than I was expecting. I was especially disappointed by that because it was for a gift.The shipping was quick though.

5-0 out of 5 stars I love Bradbury
Read the other reviews for more in-depth opinion. I love me some Bradbury, so I love this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Master Storyteller at Work
This book showcases some of Ray Bradbury's greatest short stories. His talent is to create a story that the reader is immediately able to sink into no mater how unbelievable the plot, the setting or the characters, and from time machines, to interplanetary adventures, this book is truly filled with the improbable which Bradbury makes seem imminently possible. This is truly is an enjoyable read.

5-0 out of 5 stars I love this book!
I highly recommend thisbook to any fan of Ray Bradbury's work, or to anyone who wishes to introduce his classicworks into their library. He is a passionate visionary that writes not only about sci-fi, buthis colorful writing style encapsulates the sometimes ineffable feelings that each andevery one of us have had about every possible situation in life, and dare I say, in death. Ialways feel like a kid again when I read his books, I am taken away to warm, sunnySaturdays when I was still in awe of the newness of life. I can hardly force myself to readthe works of others as I am convinced that no one can do with words the magic that RayBradbury has done.

5-0 out of 5 stars Genius
Ray Bradbury is a genius-pure and simple. He is a great. Proof is his power to affect the heart while engaging the intellect. ... Read more


8. Dandelion Wine
by Ray Bradbury
Hardcover: 288 Pages (1999-02-01)
list price: US$18.99 -- used & new: US$10.25
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380977265
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

*****

An endearing classic of childhood fancies and memories of an idyllic Midwestern summer from America's most beloved storyteller.

Dandelion Wine

Ray Bradbury's moving recollection of a vanished golden era remains one of his most enchanting novels. DANDELION WINE stands out in the Bradbury literary canon as the author's most deeply personal work, a semi-autobiographical recollection of a magical small town summer in 1928.

Twelve-year-old Douglas Spaulding knows Green Town, Illinois, is as vast and deep as the whole wide world that lies beyond the city limits. It is a pair of brand-new tennis shoes, the first harvest of dandelions for Grandfather's renowned intoxicant, the distant clang of the trolley's bell on a hazy afternoon. It is yesteryear and tomorrow blended into an unforgettable always. But as young Douglas is about to discover, summer can be more than the repetition of established rituals whose mystical power holds time at bay. It can be a best friend moving away, a human time machine who can transport you back to the Civil War, or a sideshow automaton able to glimpse the bittersweet future.

Come and savor Ray Bradbury's priceless distillation of all that is eternal about boyhood and summer.

Twelve-year-old Douglas Spaulding knows Green town, Illinois, is as vast and deep as the whole wide world that lies beyond the city limits. It is a pair of brand-new tennis shoes, the first harvest of dandelions for Grandfather's renowned intoxicant, the distant clang of the trolley's bell on a hazy afternoon. It is yesteryear and tomorrow blended into an unforgettable always. But as young Douglas is about to discover, summer can be more than the repetition of established rituals whose mystical power holds time at bay. It can be a best friend moving away, a human time machine who can transport you back to the Civil War, or a sideshow automaton able to glimpse the bittersweet future.Amazon.com Review
World-renowned fantasist Ray Bradbury has on several occasionsstepped outside the arenas of horror, fantasy, and sciencefiction. An unabashed romantic, his first novel in 1957 was basicallya love letter to his childhood. (For those who want to undertake an even more evocative lookat the dark side of youth, five years later the author would write thechilling classic SomethingWicked This Way Comes.)

Dandelion Wine takes us into the summer of 1928, and to all thewondrous and magical events in the life of a 12-year-old Midwestern boynamed Douglas Spaulding.This tender, openly affectionate story of a youngman's voyage of discovery is certainly more mainstream than exotic. Nowalking dead or spaceships to Mars here. Yet those who wish toexperience the unique magic of early Bradbury as a prose stylistshould find Dandelion Wine most refreshing. --Stanley Wiater ... Read more

Customer Reviews (274)

3-0 out of 5 stars Erm....
I had to read this book for Honor English Eight, and all I really have to say is it's ok. I didn't like the witchcraft in it and the first chapters were confusing. Once I got to the middle of the book it got more interesting and easier to understand, and one part and the end didn't make much sense...
So not bad, not great. I don't think I would read it again.
On a positive note, the imagery was good and the one chapter with the ladies being scared of the Lonely One was interesting.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of those that you have to reread periodically
I read this way back in high school and it the boy "felt" so much like my little brother--the innocence, the outdoors all the time in summer attitude, the silent little realizations that life is real.It's a book about love really.And I find myself needing to read it every 5 years or so.Thank you Mr. Bradbury for enhancing my life.

5-0 out of 5 stars Bradbury is a Graet American Writer
Bradbury is a great American writer, and draws you into episodic illustrations of life, painting a story with deep poetic images and emotions. I put him up there with Mark Twain and Hermann Hesse and Dostoyevski. His style is to present a battery of vingettes that, like the facets of a cut gem, show us many different facets of our emotional universe. He presents a Mark Twain-like panorama of the world seen thru the eyes of two adolescent boys in Midwest America, bringing us back to the scope of innocence and curiosity and the magic of being open to the wonder of the world. I think it is particularly good for teenagers in this age to see the realistic, yet poetic and magical view of youth. This book will take you back to the magic of your boyhood summers if you are older.

4-0 out of 5 stars Meandering Magic
I'm always surprised when I read Ray Bradbury. With a few exceptions, such as "Fahrenheit 451," his books are actually short-story collections sewn together with loose threads. This worked to great effect in "The Illustrated Man," and to a lesser degree in "The Martian Chronicles." When I heard that "Dandelion Wine" was set in small-town Illinois, in the summer of 1928, I wondered how a sci-fi writer of Bradbury's caliber would pull of this down-home story.

The answer: with great style, poetry, and panache. And also with a bit of trickery. In truth, this is yet another collection of short stories given some cohesiveness by Douglas and Tom, the two brothers who are often participants in the action, or eavesdroppers after the fact. Through them, we meet a traveling junk-man, a time machine in the form of an old storyteller, a Tarot Witch, and much more. We experience the heart-pounding fear of a woman hurrying home through a ravine, even as the murderous Lonely Man lurks about, and we see the tenderness of a family reacting to Grandma's half-blind, experimental, and wondrous cooking.

Although I wished for some overriding plot or goal in this story, it has a meandering magic to it. It offers humor, nostalgia, suspense, and wonder, and Bradbury's sci-fi style provides an otherworldly backdrop to this boyhood tale.

2-0 out of 5 stars book condition
The book was rated as" like new".However, it is far from that. The pages have worn corners and also some water marks. I would not buy from this seller since I did not receive what I was promised. ... Read more


9. From the Dust Returned
by Ray Bradbury
Mass Market Paperback: 288 Pages (2002-09-01)
list price: US$6.99 -- used & new: US$2.50
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380789612
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

*****

Ray Bradbury, America's most beloved storyteller, has spent a lifetime carrying readers to exhilarating and dangerous places, from dark street comers in unfamiliar cities and towns to the edge of the universe. Now, in an extraordinary flight of the imagination a half-century in the making, he takes us to a most wondrous destination: into the heart of an Eternal Family.

They have lived for centuries in a house of legend and mystery in upper Illinois -- and they are not like other midwesterners. Rarely encountered in daylight hours, their children are curious and wild; their old ones have survived since before the Sphinx first sank its paws deep in Egyptian sands. And some sleep in beds with lids.

Now the house is being readied in anticipation of the gala homecoming that will gather together the farflung branches of this odd and remarkable family. In the past-midnight stillness can be detected the soft fluttering of Uncle Einars wings. From her realm of sleep, Cecy, the fairest and most special daughter, can feel the approach of many a welcome being -- shapeshifter, telepath, somnambulist, vampire -- as she flies high in the consciousness of bird and bat.

But in the midst of eager anticipation, a sense of doom pervades. For the world is changing. And death, no stranger, will always shadow this most singular family: Father, arisen from the Earth; Mother, who never sleeps but dreams; A Thousand Times Great Grandmére; Grandfather, who keeps the wildness of youth between his ears.

And the boy who, more than anyone, carries the burden of time on his shoulders: Timothy, the sad and different foundling son who must share it all, remember, and tell...and who, alone out of all of them, must one day age and wither and die.

By turns lyrical, wistful, poignant, and chilling, From the Dust Returned is the long-awaited new novel by the peerless Ray Bradbury -- a book that will surely be numbered among his most enduring masterworks.

Amazon.com Review
High on a hill by a forked tree, the House beckons its family homeward, and they come--travelers from the lyrical, lush imagination of Ray Bradbury.

From the Dust Returned chronicles a community of eternal beings: a mummified matriarch who speaks in dust; a sleeping daughter who lives through the eyes and ears of the creatures she visits in her dreams; an uncle with wings like sea-green sails. And there is also the mortal child Timothy, the foundling son who yearns to be like those he loves: to fly, to sleep in daytime, and to live forever. Instead, his task is to witness the family's struggle with the startling possibility of its own end.

Bradbury is deservedly recognized as a master of lyricism and delicate mood. In this novel he weaves together individuals' stories and the overarching family crisis into a softly whispered, seductive tale of longing and loss, death and life in the shadowy places. --Roz Genessee ... Read more

Customer Reviews (54)

3-0 out of 5 stars Intriguing but insubstantial: despite the promising premise, there's just not enough here to fill a book. Not recommended
Pulling a lifetime of short stories into one novel, From the Dust Returned is the story of one large, unusual, supernatural family which makes its home in a grand old house in the Midwest. The book begins with a promising combination of Halloween-esque figures and lush storytelling, but that's not enough to fill a book. The characters are intriguing, but they feel unrealistic; the lush language swiftly becomes repetitive; the plot eventually comes into itself but for the most part reflects too much of its short story origins. A chapter at a time, I could appreciate From the Dust Returned--but as an entire novel I felt like something was missing: something solid, concrete enough to sustain 200 pages of text. As a result I have a mixed reaction to this novel. I wanted to like it, and sometimes did, but I can't in good faith recommend it. Pick it up if you're interested, but consider the caveats: From the Dust Returned is intriguing but imperfect, and it's certainly not Bradbury's best work.

3-0 out of 5 stars All the mystery of childhood, and unfortunately some of the confusion
Bradbury is without competition my favorite author of all time. I've read all of his books, and some of them several times. Of them, this is probably his loosest. It is poetic, beautiful, haunting. It is also at times opaque, whimsical, and difficult to engage. I believe that some readers will probably enjoy this book as much as Bradbury's other offerings, but I personally found this to be merely average.

Without question a beautifully written book filled with lovely descriptions, the lyrical quality of Bradbury's writing is in full force. Unfortunately, his usual plotting and continuity in his collections of short stories is largely missing. I feel like he perfectly captures a dreamy, childlike quality of observation, but this comes with some of the confusion of childhood as well. If you enjoy Bradbury, you will like the book, even if you agree with me that it is not his best effort.

5-0 out of 5 stars A valuable addition to his works
This book puts some early stories that didn't make much sense in their collections into a context that certainly does.The result is impressive and enjoyable.Like Dandelion Wine it is a sequence of stories collectively forming a novel.The early writing is brilliant, the later examples simpler and mellower, and the whole thing adds up surely to one of his essential books.The only doubts I had were about a story from the 1980s.Ray Bradbury is on a roll and it is wonderful to have him even now adding great books to his name.

3-0 out of 5 stars "From the Dust Returned" (From BookBanter)
Ray Bradbury's "other" Halloween book, From the Dust Returned, is over some fiftyyears in the making, beginning as a spark from a single story in his early twenties that he would continue to add on to throughout his career.This spark of a first story, "Homecoming," was originally published in Mademoiselle magazine and featured unique artwork (which is here reproduced on the cover of the book) by a then relatively unknown artist by the name of Charles Addams.

In the style of his Martian Chronicles, this book feels very much like a collection of stories that are linked together through the characters, as well as specific chapters that provide the cement, binding them all together.From the Dust Returned consists of a most unique haunted house where the dead that unite and meet there are of all the same family, with exotic and incredible names like Cecy, Uncle Einar, and A Thousand Times Great Grandmére.Cecy is a unique corpse of a woman who spends her times in the dust dunes in the attic, sending her soul and spirit out into the world to occupy and experience anything and everything, whether it be a drop of rainwater on a rock, a young lover's heart, or a giant eagle flying across the sky.Uncle Einar is a special uncle with thin veiny wings that allow him to take flight like a giant bird and travel wherever he pleases.And A Thousand Times Great Grandmére, who has existed in her decrepit state for many thousands of years has stories and experiences to tell that make everything else seem short lived and mundane.And then there are many more brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, nephews and nieces from all over the world who come to visit.

The main character, a young boy called Timothy, is also unique compared to the family for he is an ordinary human boy who is left as a babe in a basket on the doorstep of this doomed mansion, and is raised in this very strange family.But with his humanity, he has a different viewpoint, and his job is to record the stories and experiences of these most strange and unusual family members.

While From the Dust Returned seems to unravel a little sometimes, with some stories going on tangents that never quite return to the coherent plot, there are gems in this book that are unlike any other I have read.Along with The Halloween Tree, it is a perfect book to be read, and to read aloud, around and during Halloween.

Originally written on October 23rd 2007 ©Alex C. Telander.

For more book reviews and author interviews, go to BookBanter: [...]

4-0 out of 5 stars An insane rolicking ride
I had read pieces of this work before scattered through various Bradbury anthologies, and so it was surprising and somewhat unsettling to encounter them in their original context. This is a short, odd book, populated by characters that only a wonderfully-sane madman could dream up. Like most Bradbury works, it leaves you with a simultaneous feeling of satisfaction, but also the puzzlement of wondering what exactly just happened. ... Read more


10. Zen in the Art of Writing: Essays on Creativity
by Ray Bradbury
Paperback: 176 Pages (1994-08-01)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$8.82
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 1877741094
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

*****
The third edition of Bradbury's much-loved classic adds three new exuberant essays on the pleasures of writing from one of the most creative, imaginative, and prolific artists of the 20th century--an author who truly enjoys his craft and tells you why and how. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (23)

5-0 out of 5 stars Feeding the Muse: Ray Bradbury's Zen in the Art of Writing
This is a delightful, inspiring and extremely useful book on writing. Bradbury talks his evolution as a writer --what he discovered writing 2000 words every day from the age of12 to 22,publishing short stories every week in his twenties, and eventually creating novels such as Farenheit 451, Dandelion Wineand the Martian Chronicles.

Here is Bradbury's writing routine:

"All during my early twenties I had the following schedule. On Monday morning I wrote the first draft of my new story. On Tuesday I did a second draft. On Wednesday a third. On Thursday a fourth. On Friday a fifth. And on Saturday at noon, I mailed out the sixth and final draft to New York. Sunday? I thought about all the wild ideas scrambling for my attention, waiting under the attic lid, confident at last that, because of "The Lake," I would soon let them out.
If all of this sounds mechanical, it wasn't. My ideas drove me to it, you see. The more I did, the more I wanted to do. You grow ravenous. You run fevers. You know exhilaration. You can't sleep at night, because your beast-creature ideas want out and turn you in your bed. It's a grand way to live" (62-63).

He offers lots of suggestions for how to develop your writing, particularly on his chapter entitled,"How to Keep and Feed a Muse."

Here's a sample:

Write about what you love and also about what you hate:

"What do you love most in the world? The Big and the little Things I mean. What do you want more than anything else in the world? What do you love? Hate? Find a character who will want something or not want something with all of his heart. Give him running orders. Shoot him off. Then follow as fast as you can.The character, in his great love or hate, will rush through to the end of the story. The zest and gusto of his need, and there is zest in hate s well as love, will fire the landscape and raise the temperature of your typewriter thirty degrees" ( 6).

"Look for the little loves, find and shape the little bitternesses. Savor them in your mouth, try them on your typewriter" (7).

"... if you're going to be step on a live mine, make it your own. Be blown up, as it were, by your own delights and despairs" ( 15).

"The core of your creativity should be the same as the core of your story and of the main character in your story. What does your character want, what is his dream, what shape has it, and how is it expressed? What do I really think of the world, what do I love, fear, hate? and begin to pour this on paper."(43)


Read

"Read those authors who write the way you hope to write, those who think the way you would like to think. But also read those who do not think as you think or write as you want to write and be so stimulated in directions you might not take for many years" (39).


Take Walks

"To feed your muse, then you should always have been hungry about life since you were a child... I means you must take a long walks at night around your city or town, or walks in the country by day. And long walks, at any time, through bookstores and libraries" (42).

Perhaps most inspiring is Bradbury's passion for living and the way it informs his art. Her writes:

"We never sit anything out.
We are cups, constantly and quietly being filled.
The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out." (120)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Zen of Ray Bradbury
I thought I had read every book Bradbury ever wrote. Came across Zen in the Art of Writing by a flook. Even though I am not a writer and do not aspire to be one, this book filled me with such energy, I just wanted to tackle every aspect of life with GUSTO after completing this easy, wonderful read. Calling him a genius does not even come close. Thank Goodness for Ray Bradbury!!!!

4-0 out of 5 stars Restoration
Through these essays Bradbury restores an often distorted concept of writing and its role of personal, artistic expression.With vivid imagery as set forth in his essay on "feeding the Muse" and passion surging through his perspectives on the writing process - all writers (aspiring and pro alike) will find Bradbury's views to be a refreshing spray of acid on conventionalism.In other words - Bradbury's Zen is a perfect box cutting tool for thinking outside cardboard boundaries.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Quality!
This book was instrumental in my success in my creative writing class. Thanks for the great product!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Soul Transfusion
This book is like getting a transfusion. Not of blood, but of Ray Bradbury's enthusiasm.His motto was "Exactly one-half terror, one-half exhilaration."Well, this book takes out the terror of writing, and leaves us with pure exhilaration.

Even if you are not a writer, you may want to get this book just for Bradbury's zest.

This book is a tight tapestry of several ideas.It is part autobiographical, with the story of him ripping up his Buck Rodger's comics because his friends (like Job's friends) mocked him. Later he ripped up his friends as he stood strong for his conations and returned to his true bliss.

Bradbury also retells the story of his meeting Mr. Electrico at the carnival.Besides being the basis of "The Illustrated Man" and "Something Wicked This Way Comes," this meeting with the carne was Bradbury's equivalent of First Communion. He was never the same afterwards.

He also has some "nuts and bolts" tips for writers.

1. Let yourself explode.There are two types of explosions.One is the IED (improvised explosive device), where you just go to pieces. But there is also the explosion of popcorn.Be popcorn. Drop your restraints and inhibitions.

2. Write 1,000 words a day. This is not a whole lot, the equivalent of one full Amazon.com review.Trust me it works--it gets the garbage out of system. Practice makes perfect.

3. Follow a weekly regimen.Monday write. The next few days rewrite what you have written. This is crap filtration.Saturday send off the manuscript.Wash, rinse, repeat.

4. Don't think.That is, don't over think.Listen to your subconscious--that shadowy figure in the back of your heart that keeps talking to you. She tells you what is right or wrong.She's the same being who tells you things you had never thought of before. This is the muse.Without it, you cannot write.

This review cannot do justice to Ray's prose and sage advice.All I can do is whet your appetite, and hope you'll bite. The book is delicious!

ACTUNG: !!!BE SURE YOU GET THE EXPANDED VERSION!!! ... Read more


11. Listen to the Echoes: The Ray Bradbury Interviews
by Ray Bradbury, Sam Weller
Paperback: 336 Pages (2010-06-29)
list price: US$18.95 -- used & new: US$11.67
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 1935554034
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****
A definitive collection of interviews with one of America's most famous writers, covering his life, faith, friends, politics, and visions of the future.

Ray Bradbury, the poetic and visionary author of such classics as Fahrenheit 451, The Martian Chronicles and The Illustrated Man, is one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. From Mikhail Gorbachev to Alfred Hitchcock to David Bowie, Bradbury’s sway on contemporary culture is towering. Acclaimed biographer and Bradbury scholar Sam Weller has spent more than a decade interviewing the author; the fascinating conversations that emerge cast a high-definition portrait of a creative genius and a futurist who longs for yesterday. Listen to the Echoes: The Ray Bradbury Interviews is the definitive collection of interviews with an American icon. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Echoes Have Been Heard
Just get your work done. It is the one thing Ray Bradbury says repeatedly throughout Listen to the Echoes: The Ray Bradbury Interviews, the new book of interviews compiled by authorized Bradbury biographer Sam Weller.

Just get your work done is not his self-expressed mantra which we learn in the book, but he should probably consider changing it. Few writers ever rack up the shear number of short stories, novels, essays, poems, plays, and screenplays he has crafted within his 70 years in the writing business. Also, few writers ever wield the mass influence over culture and our world this dedication to his craft has given to him. In short, Ray Bradbury has gotten his work done, and his advice for us to do the same is backed up by an example we can all aspire towards.

Within this book a lot of time is given in the interviews towards a look at a large body of that work. Weller deftly rattles off questions on piece after piece of Bradbury's work in a rapid fire run, and we are treated to short but in-depth explanations into their creation. We get to peer a little behind the curtain to see the process and development behind literary treasures like Fahrenheit 451, The Martian Chronicles, The Illustrated Man and many of his notable short stories.

Bradbury's discussions within this book don't just center around his work. These interviews also hold multiple anecdotes from his own life. Memories filled with amazing instance after amazing instance of the wholly unique experiences he has had.

In one of these instances we hear about time spent with music legends at a David Bowie concert."So, I go to the arena to attend the concert, and I take [my daughter] Alexandra backstage afterward. David Bowie comes out and embraces me, and then he introduces me to Ringo Starr from the Beatles. Ringo falls over a chair getting to me. Neil Sedaka, Bette Midler, and John Belushi are all there too, and they swarm," says Bradbury.

His interesting experiences are not only held within the time of was his own celebrity. In fact his personal treasures include autograph books from when he was a teenager living with his family in Los Angeles spending his days running around to all the old movie studio lots. He met or had brief encounters with Hollywood royalty. He saw Shirley Temple dip her feet in concrete outside of Grauman's Chinese Theatre, had an accidental run-in with Greta Garbo outside of a play, and comedian George Burns even used one of the jokes Bradbury had sent him on his radio program. These events only scratch the surface to some of the interesting stories he has from his life that are told within the confines of this book.

However, the most fascinating part of this book is the thoughts it contains within it. Most of the interviews focus on Bradbury's musings on life and the topics it is filled with. He discusses his thoughts on politics, religion, art, sexuality, the pursuit of happiness, and more. He talks about a diverse range of topics in this book, and whether you agree with his thoughts or not it's a great window towards understanding this legendary figure through his thoughts and beliefs.

In being such a visionary towards our future it's funny that Bradbury lives somewhat behind the times. He has never owned a computer, and he says never will. "A computer's a typewriter. Why would I need another typewriter? I have one," he says.

He's also not too fond of the Internet, or the current revolution of online publication. "It's distracting us. It's causing us to not pay attention. People are talking too much blah blah blah. Too much talk. Come on. The CEO of Yahoo called me recently and asked if I would write a novel to put up on the Internet. I told him to go to hell. I said, `Prick up your ears! Prick up your ears! Go to hell!' That's not a book. You cannot hold a computer in your hand like you can a book. I don't care what they say about `e-books.' A computer does not smell. There are two perfumes to a book: a book is new, it smells great; a book is old, it smells even better. It smells like ancient Egypt."

One of the great aspects to this book is the way in which it has been put together, and that is all thanks to the author Sam Weller. The book feels like one continuous conversation even though it has been sorted into chapters based on the topic of discussion and the interviews happened over a decade. Each chapter is begun with a beautiful black and white photograph taken of Bradbury's home or his collections of different objects. These photos seem to put us right across from Bradbury himself completing the conversational feel.

Weller also does a very good job of being impartial towards Bradbury even though he's an admitted life-long fan. He asks illuminating questions about sensitive issues in Bradbury's life like his two extra-marital affairs and all the death he has faced, and Bradbury answers them like everything else, honestly. His questions also never seem to get in the way of their answers the way a clumsy interviewer's can.

There's a skill and a mastery to profiling someone as important to history as Ray Bradbury. Along with Weller's first book, the biography The Bradbury Chronicles: The Life of Ray Bradbury, and this collection of interviews, I feel as if he has painted a real to life portrait of an amazing figure. Sam Weller, much like Bradbury himself, has definitely gotten his work done.

5-0 out of 5 stars An American Original
All I knew about Ray Bradbury was that he wrote "Fahrenheit 451", "The Illustrated Man" and a lot of science fiction.What a pleasure it was then to meet an American original like Mark Twain in Sam Weller's superlative new book--"Listen To The Echoes".From sex and religion, to his life in Hollywood, to his thoughts on architecture and literature, Bradbury speaks with the wisdom of a philosopher, the wonder of a child and a hilarious, sometimes brutal honesty that for all its bite is never vicious.It's truly wonderful to listen to Bradbury's unique voice as he muses on everything from Renaissance art to Garbo, his thoughts about an afterlife and his great joy in living despite having suffered a debilitating stroke and losing his wife of fifty-six years.Bradbury seems also to have met everyone from Gorbachev and Norman Mailer to Marlene Dietrich, Sinatra, Walt Disney and Steven Spielberg, and gives his own inimitable perspective on them all.Mr. Weller knows his subject and does a beautiful job capturing this complex and fascinating writer--as he puts it "unfiltered and unplugged".I plan to reread "Listen To The Echoes" for its insights, its humor and as a superb portrait of an inspired and inspiring artist and humanist.

5-0 out of 5 stars A fascinating, inspiring must-read for Bradbury fans
I loved these interviews! Ray Bradbury is a fascinating person, and the book is really inspiring, since he has such great enthusiasm about people and things. He's opinionated, too, which adds to the fun. Among the topics covered are Bradbury's childhood, movies, comics, famous friends, religion, politics, and science fiction.

Here's a small sampling of Bradbury's opinions: 1) The Harry Potter books are wonderful, and he gave them to all of his grandchildren; he likens them to his own "Something Wicked This Way Comes"; 2) He loves to get toys for Christmas; 3) Reagan was one of the great presidents of the 20th century; 4) He's in favor of gay marriage ("Love is love. All I want is for people to be happy"); 5) Bush I should have extended the Gulf War to Baghdad and overthrown Saddam Hussein; then Bush II wouldn't have inherited the problem; 6) Edgar Rice Burroughs "is probably the most influential writer in the entire history of the world"; he inspired a whole generation of kids, causing them to go out into the world and become special; he inspired lots of writers, scientists and technologists.

It's a wonderful book, provocative, informative and entertaining, and a great supplement to author Sam Weller's excellent biography "The Bradbury Chronicles."

5-0 out of 5 stars A rare tour inside a brilliant mind
"Listen to the Echoes" made me want to read Ray Bradbury's books again, and I can't think of a better tribute. Bradbury comes across as exuberant, humble, funny and provocative, and these freewheeling conversations with Sam Weller seem to let him loose. It's a treat to witness the way Bradbury finds inspiration in the ordinary - like his mother's Swedish meatballs - and discovers truth through science fiction.
Weller has a sensitive yet brave way of interviewing that elicits deep, expansive and surprising responses.
Here's an example:
Weller: Given the adversity you have faced in life...how have you managed to stay positive? The week after your wife passed away, you got back to writing. How were you able to do that?
Bradbury: Work is the only answer. I have three rules to live by: Get your work done. If that doesn't work, shut up and drink your gin, and when all else fails, run like hell.

5-0 out of 5 stars That's the Sound of the Man
More than just a companion volume to his book The Bradbury Chronicles, Sam Weller's collection of interviews and anecdotes is a visionary journey into the mind and times of one of America's most prolific and influential writers.

Covering everything from politics to religion to sex, Listen is a 21st century book in it's execution. Included with the author's stories about his own life as Bradbury's biographer (do YOU know what Karl Rove's favorite Bradbury book is? Sam does,) are rich photos of Bradbury's basement office- stacked to the ceiling with comic books, monster toys, movie posters, and so much more- by photographer Zen Sekizawa.

The impact of reading Listen to the Echoes is akin to having Weller and Bradbury themselves, sitting across from you, in conversation. The impact of having read Listen to the Echoes is to have become one step deeper in the ranks on the side of life, love, and laughter. ... Read more


12. Quicker than the Eye
by Ray Bradbury
Mass Market Paperback: 304 Pages (1997-10-01)
list price: US$5.99 -- used & new: US$1.47
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380789590
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****
The internationally acclaimed author of The Martian Chronicles, The Illustrated Man, and Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury is a magician at the height of his powers, displaying his sorcerer's skill with twenty-one remarkable stories that run the gamut from total reality to light fantastic, from high noon to long after midnight. A true master tells all, revealing the strange secret of growing young and mad; opening a Witch Door that links two intolerant centuries; joining an ancient couple in their wild assassination games; celebrating life and dreams in the unique voice that has favored him across six decades and has enchanted millions of readers the world over. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (17)

2-0 out of 5 stars Not nearly as good as earlier works
I've been a BIG fan of Bradbury's work for some time - both his short stories (as collected in tomes like 'The Illustrated Man' and 'A Medicine for Melancholy') and his novels ('Farenheit 451' in particular).Thus, it was with great anticipation that I read this collection.

Sadly, my anticipation was far exceeding the enjoyment I got out of reading the stories.

That isn't to say that the stories presented were really bad - just not particularly engrossing, memorable or filled with wonder.Some of them seemed particularly dated; those were the ones that were presented as happening in "the present" of the early 90's (when they were written).This seemed quite odd as some of Bradbury's older works - which one would imagine being even more out of date - don't seem to suffer from this in the slightest.

Unless you're a completist, I'd recommend finding his earlier short story collections; they're much better.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not Free SF Reader
A collection that is over half reprints, and the new work added is mostly pretty minor, except for one rather amusing dual assassination tale.Average only around 3.25 here.A mixture of fantasy and mainstream, in general

Quicker Than the Eye : Unterderseaboat Doktor - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Zaharoff/Richter Mark V - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Remember Sascha? - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Another Fine Mess - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : The Electrocution - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Hopscotch - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : The Finnegan - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : That Woman on the Lawn - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : The Very Gentle Murders - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Quicker than the Eye - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Dorian in Excelsis - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : No News or What Killed the Dog? - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : The Witch Door - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : The Ghost in the Machine - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : At the End of the Ninth Year - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Bug - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Once More Legato - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Exchange - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Free Dirt - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : Last Rites - Ray Bradbury
Quicker Than the Eye : The Other Highway - Ray Bradbury

Kaleidoscope periscope.

3 out of 5


Earthquake planning.

3.5 out of 5


Not kid.

3 out of 5


Ghost return.

3 out of 5


Shocking exhibition.

3 out of 5


Suck face.

3 out of 5


Big fracking spider, it seems.

3.5 out of 5


Grass ghost girl.

3.5 out of 5


Matrimonial assassin pair.

4 out of 5


Magic show.

2.5 out of 5


Big slimy youthgiver.

3 out of 5


Losing a dog in the science fiction age.

4 out of 5


Suspect woman.

3.5 out of 5


Power transport.

3.5 out of 5


Remade relationship.

3 out of 5


Dancing fool.

2.5 out of 5


Beautiful bird noises.

4 out of 5


Old library friends.

3.5 out of 5


Gravedigging discussion.

3.5 out of 5


Time travel benediction.

3 out of 5


Take a long drive.

3 out of 5

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, Heart-Wrenching, Fun, Tender, and Vibrant
It's odd for me to feel so drained after reading a book of short stories.After a novel, sure--after investing one's attention into four hundred pages of characters and their coarse plot, but not after a collection of unconnected stories.

Each story in this book is a jewel.There is horror, and there is fantasy.Comedy paired with romance.There are some that are as tender as a whisper, and I won't spoil a one.

Bradbury writes with a delicacy: symmetric majesty.Every word fits, every image is fresh and new, every metaphor perfect.Stories born of prosaic ideas are sheathed in lovely new flesh; the innovative ones dazzle and delight.

I missed Metro stops, engrossed in this ink.Bring your heart; you'll need it.

4-0 out of 5 stars Another From The Master
"Quicker than the Eye" is a short story collection from Ray Bradbury, published originally in 1996.It consists of twenty-one short stories, most of which were published between 1994 and 1996.The one exception to this is "The Electrocution", which was first published in August of 1946 in "The Californian".Fourteen of these stories were published before, in a variety of magazines, and the other 7 are published for the first time in this collection.There is also an afterword, in which Bradbury discusses where his stories come from, and how he writes.

Although often considered Science Fiction, most of these stories would fall into the Fantasy/Supernatural or Horror categories, rather than Science Fiction, and some would not be put into any of the speculative fiction categories were they not written by Ray Bradbury.Bradbury is a master storyteller, and while I would not consider this collection on the same level as "The Martian Chronicles" or "The Illustrated Man", it is not far behind.Some of the stories in this collection that I like best include: "Last Rites", "The Witch Door", Once More, Legato", "Exchange", and "The Other Highway".However, all these stories are told as only Bradbury can.

4-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful little journeys to the unexpected
In his rather indulgent afterword, Bradbury hints that he dashes off many of his short stories in two hours or less. What's this mean for the reader? It means that, in general, the stories are short, even for the genre of short stories. It means that many of them are almost like little sketches of a single, simple idea rather than well-polished texts that contain many conscious layers. It also means that many of the stories are fun and quirky.

Bradbury isn't afraid to take a chance on a notion, and this bravado leads to some misses, but it also leads to some hits that you wouldn't find in a more thoughtfully-screened author's collection.

Fans of Bradbury will already be prepared for his odd take on dialogue, which is sometimes realistic, but more often riddled with philosophical musings that sound like they are being performed for the sake of an audience.

Another interesting feature of Bradbury is his versatility. Going into a story, we never know whether we're going to get science fiction, horror, comedy, or drama. Sometimes, when we get to the end of the story, the classification is likewise elusive. This unpredictability really gives the genre elements more of a punch when they do come up. If we were to get a shambling monster at the end of every story, it would soon lose its power to affect us. But when a monster appears only twice or so throughout the course of the entire book, we really feel the horror.

I highly recommend this collection, simply because the writing is unique and thought-provoking.

There are 22 stories in all. The ones that I found to be good were:

"Remember Sascha," a story that manages to be both creepy and heartwarming, draws a brilliant contrast between the affection that a loving couple shares, and the dialogue they maintain with their nervous unborn baby.

"The Finnegan" is a great parody of an old Sherlock Holmes story, in which an old man plays detective concerning the disappearance of some young children in the woods.

"The Very Gentle Murders" is an amusing farce about an elderly couple that mutually decides that the only satisfying past time each spouse's attempted murder of the other.

"The Witch Door" draws some parallels between a futuristic world in which political trends have continued to the point of the absurd, and the Salem Witch Trial era.

"At the End of the Ninth Year" is a bizarre dialogue between a dissatisfied husband and wife, who find an unexpectedly warm and happy resolution to their problems.

"Bug" is a great story about a high schooler who can dance so well that he clears the dance floor every night, but gives up dancing as he enters middle age. This might be the best story in the collection.

"Once More, Legato" is about a man who seems to read a symphony into the chirping of the birds outside his home.

"Exchange" tells the story of a librarian who gets an after-closing visit from a man who used to visit her at the library when he was a boy. This has a great, creepy beginning that makes every turn of the page suspenseful. It is also, along with the equally good "Last Rites," a celebration of reading and literature.

"Free Dirt" is a great story about some graveyard dirt that the old graveyard owner is giving away. An innocent beginning gets more and more frightening. This is another contender for best story in the book.

A final contender is "The Other Highway," which tells the story of an American family that goes off he beaten path to discover a hidden road to small town America. This has some great quotes and images in it that touch on some of the same themes as Fahrenheit 451.
... Read more


13. Fahrenheit 451
by Ray Bradbury
Mass Market Paperback: 208 Pages (2008-04-01)
list price: US$6.99 -- used & new: US$2.65
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0345342968
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****
Nowadays firemen start fires. Fireman Guy Montag loves to rush to a fire and watch books burn up. Then he met a seventeen-year old girl who told him of a past when people were not afraid, and a professor who told him of a future where people could think. And Guy Montag knew what he had to do....
Amazon.com Review
In Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury's classic, frighteningvision of the future, firemen don't put out fires--they start them inorder to burn books. Bradbury's vividly painted society holds up theappearance of happiness as the highest goal--a place where trivialinformation is good, and knowledge and ideas are bad. Fire CaptainBeatty explains it this way, "Give the people contests they winby remembering the words to more popular songs.... Don't give themslippery stuff like philosophy or sociology to tie things upwith. That way lies melancholy."

Guy Montag is a book-burning fireman undergoing a crisis of faith. Hiswife spends all day with her television "family," imploringMontag to work harder so that they can afford a fourth TV wall. Theirdull, empty life sharply contrasts with that of his next-door neighborClarisse, a young girl thrilled by the ideas in books, and moreinterested in what she can see in the world around her than in themindless chatter of the tube. When Clarisse disappears mysteriously,Montag is moved to make some changes, and starts hiding books in hishome. Eventually, his wife turns him in, and he must answer the callto burn his secret cache of books. After fleeing to avoid arrest,Montag winds up joining an outlaw band of scholars who keep thecontents of books in their heads, waiting for the time society willonce again need the wisdom of literature.

Bradbury--the author of more than 500 short stories, novels, plays,and poems, including The MartianChronicles and The IllustratedMan--is the winner of many awards, including the Grand MasterAward from the Science Fiction Writers of America. Readers ages 13 to93 will be swept up in the harrowing suspense of Fahrenheit451, and no doubt will join the hordes of Bradbury fans worldwide.--Neil Roseman ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1375)

5-0 out of 5 stars Fahrenheit 451
America's Galactic Foreign Legion: Book 1: Feeling Lucky (Volume 1)

It is hard to lose when you re-read a clasic.

5-0 out of 5 stars Classic, Disturbing Tale
This disturbing classic by Ray Bradbury (born 1920) grabs the reader with its chilling tone.Guy Montag is a fireman in a society where fire fighters don't extinguish flames but set fire to books which because books are considered to be a threat by the powers that be.After meeting a free-thinking neighbor and seeing his sick wife mistreated, Montag begins to question his values and the values of a society that burns books.In time he becomes a rebel, flees from the authorities, and meets a group of vagabonds that memorize the books and then burn them (to destroy the evidence).Finally war breaks out, and despite much destruction there is hope that a new society will be rebult from the ashes.

Bradbury hits a number of themes in this compelling novel, penned in 1951.Censorship is one, but so is a sense of increasing automation, the dumbing down of society, disdain for independent thinking, and probably McCarthyism.The dialog is snappy with many slang expressions that perhaps were more relevant in 1951 than today.The result, of course, is a somewhat eerie but gripping classic.Readers might find enjoy THE PEDESTRIAN and THE FLYING MACHINE, two Bradbury short stories that present similar themes.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great book, especially the 50th Anniversary Edition
The story is simple, but powerful.As other reviewers have noted, some of the details that Bradbury imagined in 1950 (when he wrote it, not the publication date of 1953) have come true (large TVs on the walls, a move towards simplistic sensationalism, the deep distrust of education and educated people, etc.)I found the writing to be serviceable, sometimes brilliant.Occasionally the metaphors get too long winded and overly descriptive.

The 50th Anniversary Edition, published by Ballantine Books/Del Rey is wonderful.Not only do we get the full unedited text (ironically, this book about censorship has been censored frequently over the years), but we also get the afterword and coda (added in the late 70s, early 80s) and an illuminating 10 page interview with Bradbury himself.In the interview he describes his writing process, how he thinks the book holds up today, and whether or not he'd write a sequel.It's a great addition to the book.

4-0 out of 5 stars The message is clear
The message in the book is similar to that in "1984" and in the writings of Ayn Rand. At times the message seemed to be so "in your face" and I'm certain that Mr. Bradbury would have been more subtle had he written it 10 or 15 years later.

5-0 out of 5 stars There must be something in books
Books are dangerous. They're full of ideas that make people think about the world, feel passion, and perhaps act out. That's not good for society; it causes conflict, uprising, and interference with the status quo. People who read and think scare people who don't, so most citizens have happily given up the right to decide what to think about and now let the government fill their brains with constant loud mindless entertainment. This managed input has equalized society; nobody feels inferior to anyone else and there's no conflict anymore. Dull minds, constant entertainment, and conformity make society run smoothly.

Guy Montag works as a fireman. He burns books at night while his wife sits in her parlor and listens to inane media shows at high volume. But Clarice, the teenager next door, is different. Her family sits around and talks. They discuss things and they laugh with each other. Guy wonders what they talk about as he watches his wife talk to the strangers on TV and pop sleeping pills...

Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451 presents a possible frightening future in which intellectual pursuits and nonconformity are deemed dangerous and subversive. It's been more than half a century since Fahrenheit 451 was published and we've seen censorship laws actually become looser over the years and the advent of the internet has brought on the current "information age." But that doesn't make Fahrenheit 451 irrelevant because it's about much more than literary censorship. It's about freedom of speech and individual rights. It's about thinking for ourselves and what might happen if we let the government tell us what we can see, hear, or own.

Fahrenheit 451 resonates with me on so many levels. First of all, it's just superbly written. I love Bradbury's intense style which translates especially well on Blackstone Audio's version read by Christopher Hurt (sample). Here he describes the show that Mrs Montag watches all day:

A great thunderstorm of sound gushed from the walls. Music bombarded him at such an immense volume that his bones were almost shaken from their tendons; he felt his jaw vibrate, his eyes wobble in his head. He was a victim of concussion. When it was all over he felt like a man who had been thrown from a cliff, whirled in a centrifuge and spat out over a waterfall that fell and fell into emptiness and emptiness and never -- quite -- touched -- bottom -- never -- never -- quite -- no not quite -- touched -- bottom ... and you fell so fast you didn't touch the sides either... never... quite... touched... anything.

The thunder faded. The music died.

"There," said Mildred. And it was indeed remarkable. Something had happened. Even though the people in the walls of the room had barely moved, and nothing had really been settled, you had the impression that someone had turned on a washing-machine or sucked you up in a gigantic vacuum. You drowned in music and pure cacophony. He came out of the room sweating and on the point of collapse. Behind him, Mildred sat in her chair and the voices went on again...

Second, I share Bradbury's ardent passion for knowledge and learning. The thought of lost information, burned books, mindless entertainment, meaningless small-talk, conformity, and intellectual malaise makes my stomach twist. I don't believe that we're in danger of the anti-intellectualism that Bradbury posits, but still his ideas get me riled up.

Third, I'll admit that I'm a rebel at heart. While I recognize that obeying laws and paying taxes are a necessary part of living in a well-functioning society, I feel mostly distrustful and suspicious when the government increases taxes, takes over more functions in society, tells us what to believe, and tries to revoke constitutional freedoms. In this context, Bradbury's possible future doesn't seem so impossible anymore.

I'm pleased that my school district assigns Fahrenheit 451 in its middle-school curriculum, though I find it a bit ironic that some publishers have edited the language to make it more "suitable" for teenagers. ... Read more


14. A Sound of Thunder and Other Stories
by Ray Bradbury
Paperback: 352 Pages (2005-09-01)
list price: US$13.99 -- used & new: US$4.00
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0060785691
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****

With his disarmingly simple style and complex imagination, Ray Bradbury has seized the minds of American readers for decades.This collection showcases thirty-two of Bradbury's most famous tales in which he lays bare the depths of the human soul. The thrilling title story, A Sound of Thunder, tells of a hunter sent on safari -- sixty million years in the past. But all it takes is one wrong step in the prehistoric jungle to stamp out the life of a delicate and harmless butterfly -- and possibly something else much closer to home ...

... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Bradbury...One of the best!
If you are a fan of Ray Bradbury, you can't go wrong with this collection of short stories. Just fantastic!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Sound Of Thunder and Other Stories
I read 'A Sound Of Thunder' at school many years ago but I have always remembered it as one of the great sci-fi tales of all times. Ray Bradburys stories have a timeless appeal and this book would truly be a wonderful addition to any home library

4-0 out of 5 stars Critic should see the movie before they pan it.
I for one liked the movie well enough to come hunting for the short story. By this time next year I will have used both in my Language Arts class.

5-0 out of 5 stars Bradbury: Common Man's Star Gazer
Ray Bradbury is one of the greatest American Science Fiction writers of all time.Yet he does not portray huge battle scenes and alien invasions.He rather, achieves something unique by enthralling the reader without the traditional flash of Science Fiction.Bradbury wrote the story "R" is for rocket about a familythat has little money and dreams of one day riding in a rocket ship.It is the future and rocket travel is a reality, yet a large expense.The father knows he will never be able to give his children this gift.So he instead buys a broken old rocket and puts on an elaborate hoax to give his sons the gift of space travel.This is a very realistic style of science fiction.Bradbury takes you and gives you the common mans perspective from another age.This perspective is then used to drive home the moral of his sorted little tales.He uses low diction and familiar settings to allow the reader to bond with the characters.Then the reader is shown how the characters' lives are drastically different then theirs.The result isof this difference is usually technology.Now the reader experiences the effects first hand due to the relation to the characters.Relatable characters are the strong point of Bradbury's writing and it is what gives him the ability to entertain with simpler shorter stories.

4-0 out of 5 stars An excellent book, but a dirty trick
This is indeed a wonderful collection of some of Bradbury's best short stories, but as pointed out by other reviewers, it is exactly the same collection as "The Golden Apples of the Sun", simply reissued under a different title as a movie tie-in (reputed to be one of the worst movies ever made).

If you already have "Golden Apples", don't be fooled by the publisher into thinking this is a new and different book. It's hard enough as it is to collect Bradbury stories without getting a lot of duplication.
... Read more


15. Something Wicked This Way Comes
by Ray Bradbury
Hardcover: 304 Pages (1999-06-01)
list price: US$18.99 -- used & new: US$10.00
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380977273
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****

Few American novels written this century have endured in th heart and mind as has this one-Ray Bradbury's incomparable masterwork of the dark fantastic.A carnival rolls in sometime after the midnight hour on a chill Midwestern October eve, ushering in Halloween a week before its time.A calliope's shrill siren song beckons to all with a seductive promise of dreams and youth regained.In this season of dying, Cooger & Dark's Pandemonium Shadow Show has come to Green Town, Illinois, to destroy every life touched by its strange and sinister mystery.And two inquisitive boys standing precariously on the brink of adulthood will soon discover the secret of the satanic raree-show's smoke, mazes, and mirrors, as they learn all too well the heavy cost of wishes -- and the stuff of nightmare.Amazon.com Review
A masterpiece of modern Gothic literature, Something Wicked This WayComes is the memorable story of two boys, James Nightshade and WilliamHalloway, and the evil that grips their small Midwestern town with thearrival of a "dark carnival" one Autumn midnight. How these two innocents,both age 13, save the souls of the town (as well as their own), makes forcompelling reading on timeless themes. What would you do if yoursecret wishes could be granted by the mysterious ringmaster Mr. Dark?Bradbury excels in revealing the dark side that exists in us all, teachingus ultimately to celebrate the shadows rather than fear them. In many ways,this is a companion piece to his joyful, nostalgia-drenched Dandelion Wine, in whichBradbury presented us with one perfect summer as seen through the eyes of a12-year-old. In Something Wicked This Way Comes, he deftlyexplores the fearsome delights of one perfectly terrifying, unforgettableautumn. --Stanley Wiater ... Read more

Customer Reviews (223)

5-0 out of 5 stars Golly, gee! Look what you done to me!
Most of what needs to be said has been said above, but I'd like to add a word about Bradbury's lexical enthusiasm. Too many folks here knocking him for 'swallowing the thesaurus' or summat. What a dumbed-down, pathetic bunch of quasi-illiterate prats! Some folks could (can) write like that without dictionary, thesaurus, assistance or therapy. They did/do it for fun, for the sheer joy of language, for the ping-pong of Joyce, Woolf and Faullker versus Hemingway, Mailer and Co, avalanches of colour versus perfectly composed black and white. Bradbury never needed the paranoid little forewords that whinged about fantasy and sci-fi being peripheral to literature. He could write, late 50's/early 60's-style, and do it well. To judge him by the cretinous reductionism of the post-post modern is anachronistic, patronising and unfair. Sod off and complain about Moby Dick if you want to pick holes in language.

5-0 out of 5 stars Something truly wicked this way comes!
Something Wicked This Way Comes was my first contact with Bradbury, and it was a mindblast! The powerful story of archetypes and conviction that has inspired not a few of Steven King's books, and the beautiful and colorful prose of the novel enchanted me in a way that very few authors have ever managed.

The story is set in a small Midwestern town. One October, a mysterious traveling carnival arrives, filled with strange attractions and stranger performers. And as the carnival's dark promises of secret desires turn to madness and despair, the lives of two 13-year old boys change forever.

The beauty of Something Wicked This Way Comes is contained in its contrasts. Will Halloway is born a minute before midnight on October 30. Blond and blue-eyed, he is careful and timid. Jim Nightshade on the other hand - born a minute after midnight on October 31 - is his exact opposite. With his chestnut hair and dark eyes, brooding and always "looking at his shadow", he is ever getting into trouble. Perhaps it is this duality that accounts for the boys' friendship. It is also another beautiful contrast that Jim's brashness is what makes him the weak one in the story, while Will's timidity hides greater strength.

The monstrous performers of Mr. Dark's carnival are among the most vivid images of nightmarish dementia I've seen in any type of fantasy, not in small part due to Bradbury's amazing descriptions. The scene of the Wax Witch's flight in a balloon held by her breaths, as she touches people's dreams in search for the boys, brands itself deep into the imagination, and won't let go long after you've put the book down. And it is but one example of the powerful imagery that occurs many times throughout the book.

In the end, Something Wicked This Way Comes is a story of growing up and coming of age, of overcoming the greatest obstacles - your own desires and self-doubts - and of finding strength in what makes us human, against a power that would steal your dreams and turn them to nightmares. The book has mythic resonance, despite its "YA" setup and small-town setting, and in its wake one feels maybe a little stronger, as if the reader, and not the characters, has overcome the obstacles of Mr. Dark's traveling carnival. It is a beautifully written and imagined novel, and an attestation to the genius of Ray Bradbury's writing. I can not recommend it enough!

10/10


[...]

5-0 out of 5 stars An awesome feat of modern literature
Originally released in the early 1960s, Ray Bradbury's "Something Wicked This Way Comes" reads as fresh as any dark fantasy novel or horror piece written today, and it's as well written as the best of the genre, Stephen King and Dean Koontz and the like.

The story in this novel starts off quite simply. There's a small town. In the middle of the night a train rolls into town and a carnival unloads itself off the train. Two young boys become interested and begin sneaking around the carnival at night, as young boys are likely to do. But then weird things begin happening in town.

I won't say any more about the plot, because it would give too much away.

But the writing here is great, flows easily and is full of awe-inspiring moments and some laughter. The darkness of this tale is not visually grotesque, so this is a perfect story for both adults and young adults. Even children nearing the teen years could enjoy this book.

As far as a theme or subtext, "Something Wicked This Way Comes" focuses a lot on age, on the young seeking their dreams, and the old wishing for dreams that had never come to fruition. The relationships between fathers and sons is also a main feature of this story.

Read it, you'll love it. It's definitely a classic.

2-0 out of 5 stars Not very wicked.
I bought this assuming to be enthralled by a 'dark carnival'; to be a bit frightened at the least, but I was more taken aback by the repetition of bradbury's wording. He uses words with like meanings in long strings and it got old rather quickly. Some parts are like reading entries in a Thesaurus; I skipped over these "defining" paragraphs/sentences after the first couple chapters.

The book was not 'wicked'; it isn't even as scary as some R.L. Stine books I dug up recently and those aren't even a fraction of the size and depth this attempts. With the name "Something Wicked This Way Comes", I was expecting wickedness worded out; twisted thoughts and evilness dealt out by a ominous force. No deal. The book is rather tame - by its name I was expecting Steven King but instead got Walt Disney.

It's a child's book. Had I known that, I wouldn't have bought it.

2-0 out of 5 stars form over substance
I don't quite understand how this happened. I read other books by Bradbury, and enjoyed them thoroughly. This time - a flop. Every element of this book holds on its own. The plot is quite engaging. I enjoyed the philosophical ruminations about time, death, and the origins of the carnival. Even the style, considered apart from the plot, is gratifying. Yet, when all of these come together, the whole is much less than its parts. What could be scary, becomes boring. Would be poetic language verges on ridiculous. Don't get me wrong - Bradbury is a great writer, and I will keep reading his books (fortunately, many still to read). It is just this book, that, for me, was very clumsy. ... Read more


16. Fahrenheit 451.
by Ray Bradbury
Paperback: 192 Pages (2000-03-01)
-- used & new: US$7.87
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 3453164121
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (7)

1-0 out of 5 stars Wrong Translation Not English
Order this for my daughter she is studing this book. so I got it for her Christmas present. Didn't look at real close so when she opened it for Chistmas she started laughingand laughing. She finle told me way....alittle embearsed, so we put it up. know anyone that can read German?

1-0 out of 5 stars Not satisfied with the seller. :(
I ordered 1 English copy and ended with 3 German copies instead! At least, they reimbursed me once I returned the 3 titles back.

4-0 out of 5 stars Fahrenheit 451 is Fascinating and Gripping
More than just a story, Fahrenheit 451 is written in breathtaking prose, but manages to convey essential ideas through its simple, terrifying plot. Its metaphors and theme of censorship and knowledge will set your mind reeling and will hopefully do what it is intended to do: change the way you look at the world.

5-0 out of 5 stars The 5 stars say it all.
Read the book, you will see.

4-0 out of 5 stars Interesting...
It is very interesting and strange. I never has been read this kind of book before. It have very strong words inside. It makes me think about our future. Hopefully it won't happen in the future. ... Read more


17. A Medicine for Melancholy and Other Stories
by Ray Bradbury
Paperback: 307 Pages (1998-02-01)
list price: US$13.95 -- used & new: US$6.94
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380730863
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****
Ray Bradbury is a painter who uses words rather than brushes--for he created lasting visual images that, once observed, are impossible to forget. Sinister mushrooms growing in a dank cellar. A family's first glimpse at Martians. A wonderful white vanilla ice-cream summer suit that changes everyone who wears it. A great artist drawing in the sand on the beach. A clunky contraption made out of household implements to help some kids play a game called Invasion. The most marvelous Christmas display a little boy ever saw. All those images and many more are inside this book, a new trade edition of thirty-one of Bradbury's most arresting tales--timeless short fiction that ranges from the farthest reaches of space to the innermost stirrings of the heart. Ray Bradbury is known worldwide as one of the century's great men of imagination. Here are thirty-one reasons why.Ray Bradbury is a painter who uses words rather than brushes--for he created lasting visual images that, once observed, are impossible to forget. Sinister mushrooms growing in a dank cellar. A family's first glimpse at Martians. A wonderful white vanilla ice-cream summer suit that changes everyone who wears it. A great artist drawing in the sand on the beach. A clunky contraption made out of household implements to help some kids play a game called Invasion. The most marvelous Christmas display a little boy ever saw. All those images and many more are inside this book, a new trade edition of thirty-one of Bradbury's most arresting tales--timeless short fiction that ranges from the farthest reaches of space to the innermost stirrings of the heart. Ray Bradbury is known worldwide as one of the century's great men of imagination. Here are thirty-one reasons why. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

4-0 out of 5 stars A must for Bradbury fans
I always tend to think of Ray Bradbury as one of the science fiction masters. And that is not to say that this collection has zero science fiction, for it does. But there are several stories where Bradbury takes his skill past the sci-fi and fully into the heartfelt world he so often covers in his other books. The stories range from romance to the rainy worlds of Venus and every place inbetween as Bradbury demonstrates some stunning and always powerful imagination.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Collection by a Master Short-Story Writer
Ray Bradbury is one of the most distinctive and talented writers that the sci-fi pulps of the 40's and 50's spawned. He's got a really unique voice, and his stories, usually very short and very readable, are certainly a example of sci-fi at its finest. Some really great stories in this collection. However, I guess it's kind of silly to call this a sci-fi collection. There's horror, fantasy, sci-fi, and a lot of plain old good short story in this collection. If you like to read short stories, I highly recommend any of his collections, because they seem consistently good to me.

5-0 out of 5 stars Intriguing
Wow- this book is a creative, intelligent, easy-to-understand treasure!Each story is about 5-25 pages, some are shorter than others.They are not all alike, so you are guaranteed to like at least a few, but it is hard to believe that someone might not like most of them.ray bradbury writes very well and i am sure you will enjoy this book.try it!!

4-0 out of 5 stars incredible
i can't believe no one has reviewed this book.i imagine the reason is that no one has read it!otherwise, this thing would be overflowing with reviews.this collection of short stories is simply incredible.so welldone.the title says it all, and every story is just that:a medicine formelancholy.i was lucky to run across a copy. ... Read more


18. The Illustrated Man
by Ray Bradbury
Hardcover: 288 Pages (1997-06-01)
list price: US$18.99 -- used & new: US$9.66
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380973847
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****

He was a riot of rockets and fountains and people, in such intricate detail and color that you could bear the voiced murmuring, small and muted, from the crowds that inhabited his body.

The Illustrated Man

Ray Bradbury brings wonders alive. A peerless American storyteller, his oeuvre has been celebrated for decades--from The Martian Chronicles and Fahrenheit 451 to Dandelion Wine and Something Wicked This Way Comes.

The Illustrated Man is classic Bradbury --a collection of tales that breathe and move, animated by sharp, intaken breath and flexing muscle. Here are eighteen startling visions of humankind's destiny, unfolding across a canvas of decorated skin--visions as keen as the tattooist's needle and as colorful as the inks that indelibly stain the body.

The images, ideas, sounds and scents that abound in this phantasmagoric sideshow are provocative and powerful: the mournful cries of celestial travelers cast out cruelly into a vast, empty space of stars and blackness ... the sight of gray dust settling over a forgotten outpost on a road that leads nowhere ... the pungent odor of Jupiter on a returning father's clothing. Here living cities take their vengeance, technology awakens the most primal natural instincts, Martian invasions are foiled by the good life and the glad hand, and dreams are carried aloft in junkyard rockets.

Ray Bradbury's The Illustrated Man is a kaleidoscopic blending of magic, imagination, and truth, widely believed to be one of the Grandmaster's premier accomplishments: as exhilarating as interplanetary travel, as maddening as a walk in a million-year rain, and as comforting as simple, familiar rituals on the last night of the world.

He was a riot of rockets and fountains and people, in such intricate detail and color that you could hear the voices murmuring, small and muted, from the crowds that inhabited his body.

Ray Bradbury brings wonders alive. A peerless American storyteller, his oeuvre has been celebrated for decades--from The Martian Chronicles and Fahrenheit 451 to Dandelion Wine and Something Wicked This Way Comes.

THE ILLUSTRATED MAN is classic Bradbury--a collection of tales that breathe and move, animated by sharp, intaken breath and flexing muscle. Here are eighteen startling visions of humankind's destiny, unfolding across a canvas of decorated skin--visions as keen as the tattooist's needle and as colorful as the inks that indelibly stain the body.

The images, ideas, sounds and scents that abound in this phantasmagoric sideshow are provocative and powerful: the mournful cries of celestial travelers cast out cruelly into a vast, empty space of stars and blackness...the sight of gray dust settling over a forgotten outpost on a road that leads nowhere...the pungent odor of Jupiter on a returning father's clothing. Here living cities take their vengeance, technology awakens the most primal natural instincts, Martian invasions are foiled by the good life and the glad hand, and dreams are carried aloft in junkyard rockets. Ray Bradbury's THE ILLUSTRATEDMAN is a kaleidoscopic blending of magic, imagination, and truth, widely believed to be one of the Grandmaster's premier accomplishments: as exhilarating as interplanetary travel, as maddening as a walk in a million-year rain, and as comforting as simple, familiar rituals on the last night of the world.Amazon.com Review
That The Illustrated Man has remained in print since being publishedin 1951 is fair testimony to the universal appeal of Ray Bradbury's work. Onlyhis second collection (the first was Dark Carnival, later reworkedinto The OctoberCountry), it is a marvelous, if mostly dark, quilt of sciencefiction, fantasy, and horror. In an ingenious framework to open and closethe book, Bradbury presents himself as a nameless narrator who meets theIllustrated Man--a wanderer whose entire body is a living canvas of exotictattoos. What's even more remarkable, and increasingly disturbing, is thatthe illustrations are themselves magically alive, and each proceeds tounfold its own story, such as "The Veldt," wherein rowdy children take agame of virtual reality way over the edge. Or "Kaleidoscope," aheartbreaking portrait of stranded astronauts about to reenter ouratmosphere--without the benefit of a spaceship. Or "Zero Hour," in whichinvading aliens have discovered a most logical ally--our own children. Eventhough most were written in the 1940s and 1950s, these 18 classic storieswill be just as chillingly effective 50 years from now. --Stanley Wiater ... Read more

Customer Reviews (222)

5-0 out of 5 stars Psycho.
This book is good for those in the psychological part of the work force. It is good for everyone else too, since it has several stories with in it, on top of a main one.

5-0 out of 5 stars Good Book.... Good Purchase
The book was good. It also arrived about 13 days before the estimated arrival date. The book came in excellent condition, just as the description provided.

3-0 out of 5 stars Illustrated man tattoos you can watch
I heard about the book because it was a book one of my favorite characters Dr. Reed on Criminal Minds really liked, the character likedthebook and gave a brief description of the content. I thought it was a pretty good book. The individual stories were not to long and they all actually reminded me of things you might see on that series The Twilight Zone , ya know the really old black & white show from back in the day with that dude in the suit with the weird voice. So if you wanna see a persons view on different topics from back in the day or you liked that old Twilight Zone show your prolly gonna like it alot.

5-0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Idea
Ray Bradbury is one of those rare science fiction authors who writes to provoke rather than simply entertain. His short stories, like his novels, are always deeper than they might seem at first glance, and require careful reading if you are going to get the most out of them. Happy endings are supplied only when called for, and for mood, there are few better writers anywhere.

The Illustrated Man may just have the finest way of connecting otherwise disparate short stories together that has ever been thought of. We have all seen those who have tattoos, and many of them, if you ask, have stories behind each of their decorations. But what if the stories are real? The setting, therefore, is not a place but a person, a body, a human canvas.

The stories themselves are of high quality. Some, like "The Long Rain," still resonate; who among us hasn't been caught in a storm that never seems to end? The emerging madness of the characters is haunting, even if the Venus we know today is not the Venus of the story.

Other stories are topical for the time of the book and are interesting for that reason. "The Other Foot," for example, deals with racial segregation reversed on a future Mars. But of course, the issue of race remains a challenge for Americans even today, and so the story is still relevant.

Other works of note include "The Fire Balloons," which raises the question of the nature of sin: must it be physical? And the ideas found in "The Exiles," about the degree to which fictional characters actually exist (later revisited in fascinating form by Joanne Greenberg in a story from her collection With the Snow Queen), raise questions about what it means to be real at all.

This is a collection well worth reading and rereading.

5-0 out of 5 stars great work of art
Bradbury is a really surprising story teller that never gets you bored. That collection is superb. ... Read more


19. Death Is a Lonely Business
by Ray Bradbury
Paperback: 240 Pages (1999-03-01)
list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$7.49
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0380789655
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****
Ray Bradbury, the undisputed Dean of American storytelling, dips his accomplished pen into the cryptic inkwell of noir and creates a stylish and slightly fantastical tale of mayhem and murder set among the shadows and the murky canals of Venice, California, in the early 1950s.

Toiling away amid the looming palm trees and decaying bungalows, a struggling young writer (who bears a resemblance to the author) spins fantastic stories from his fertile imagination upon his clacking typewriter. Trying not to miss his girlfriend (away studying in Mexico), the nameless writer steadily crafts his literary effort--until strange things begin happening around him.

Starting with a series of peculiar phone calls, the writer then finds clumps of seaweed on his doorstep. But as the incidents escalate, his friends fall victim to a series of mysterious "accidents"--some of them fatal. Aided by Elmo Crumley, a savvy, street-smart detective, and a reclusive actress of yesteryear with an intense hunger for life, the wordsmith sets out to find the connection between the bizarre events, and in doing so, uncovers the truth about his own creative abilities.

Amazon.com Review
The image of drowned circus cages in the trash-filled canals of Venice,California, both haunts and illuminates famed fantasy and science fictionauthor RayBradbury's rare venture into the mystery field.Like filmmaker Federico Fellini, Bradbury is fascinated bythe seedy splendor of cheap carnivals and circuses--"a long time before, inthe early Twenties, these cages had probably rolled by like bright summerstorms with animals prowling them, lions opening their mouths to exhale hotmeat breaths. Teams of white horses had dragged their pomp through Veniceand across the fields."

But now it's the early 1950s, and foggy, shabby Venice is the last stopon the circus train for scores of old silent-movie stars and young writerstrying to keep their art and their bodies alive.As Bradbury's autobiographical hero, a young writer, pounds out his shortstories, someone is killing off the older denizens of the tacky city. Thewriter joins forces with a quirky detective called Elmo Crumley and afaded screen star to investigates the deaths. Their search begins and endsin one of those iconic, waterlogged cages.

Blending hard-boiled detective fiction with beautiful descriptions of thisstrange Californian town, Death Is a Lonely Business is well worthinvestigating. --Dick Adler ... Read more

Customer Reviews (17)

4-0 out of 5 stars Good mystery with insights about the writing process
I had a hard time getting into this murder mystery novel at first.Bradbury's style at times was borderline stream of consciousness, making sentence phrases out of place and creating too much effort for the reader.As I proceeded, I became comfortable with the style as it was necessary to evoke the sense of anxiety, desperation and frustration that surrounded the main character, a young, struggling writer who lives in Venice, California.In addition to the story line about a mysterious series of deaths in the writer's economically depressed neighborhood, the novel is a reflection on Bradbury's emotions and fears as he attempts to write, as well as a study on the writing process.The plot builds up nicely as the deaths increase (as do the potential suspects).Each character is fully fleshed out, making each memorable and significant.Bradbury's ability to instigate the reader's imagination is ever present, as his descriptions of time and place evoke vivid images.

I must say that I was mildly disappointed in the final outcome.However, up until then this books grabs you and drags you through its gritty environs and eccentric characters.The insights into the creative writing process, as expressed throught the main character as well as his foil - a police detective - are also illuminating.

4-0 out of 5 stars Vintage Bradbury
In this book Ray Bradbury steps outside of his usual speculative arena and into the crime genre.As such it's very interesting to see him apply his trademark narrative style to a different genre.This is a first-person murder-mystery story told from the perspective of a young writer in Venice Beach, California in 1949.One of the strongest points of this book was its nostalgaic evocation of setting, both time and place.All of the characters in the book are quirky and eccentric.As usual for anything by Bradbury, it is very well-written in his unique, lyrical, wondrous style -- always a delight as far as I'm concerned.He writes prose that somehow reads like poetry, sprinkled with fantastic metaphors.My only complaint was that the ending was somewhat disappointing, which is why I gave it four rather than five stars -- but it's still a good book that all Bradbury fans will enjoy!

5-0 out of 5 stars Not just a detective story
In Death is a Lonely Business, Ray Bradbury, more commonly thought of as a science fiction writer, pays homage to detective fiction masters Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler and their ilk.A satisfying mystery, Bradbury's book does not ape his heroes' fiction by creating a hard-boiled detective per se; rather he goes for the atmosphere of place and the sense of characters hanging on the fringe.And it just isn't a mystery story, either: it is a rollicking metaphor of the writing process and writer persona.

It is 1949 and the setting is Venice, California in its last lonely, gaudy gasp before gentrification set in.Its geographic location makes it the least bright and dry spot along the southern California coast, with more days of fog and drizzle than out and out sunshine.It is home to a shrinking population of the down and out, lives lived out among the ruins of a once thriving amusement park community. It is also home to the nameless narrator, a young man living hand to mouth who has begun publishing stories in genre magazines, an achievement of which he is quite proud (and which, he later learns, has earned him the reputation of the crazy one among those who seem to be slipping from the fringe all together, because he shouts with joy and fairly beats his chest when a magazine bearing his work hits the newsstand).The story begins as the narrator is returning at night on a trolley from visiting a friend across town.He is vaguely aware of another passenger behind him, who may be muttering the title line.Soon thereafter, neighbors begin turning up dead.And then, death begins to overtake people in the tenement he visits in the sunnier part of town.

Meanwhile, since he has the imagination to create detective stories, our narrator figures he can solve this mystery.He hooks up with a worldly veteran detective who is willing to listen to him.There is a ying and yang thing going with the duo as they work their way to the solution.Bradbury's characters--the writer, the detective, the opera singer, the faded movie star, the barber and all the residents of Venice and its surrounds make for an odd yet achingly humane and touching world.The book is often very funny and playful as it casts clues not just on the mystery at hand but on the mystique of the imagination.Death is a Lonely Business is a nifty tour de force, one that sets up a world that seems alien at the outset, and comfortably familiar and difficult to leave by the last page.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Masterful Work of Genius!
Ray Bradbury is a skilled author. One of his best talents is stringing an engaging story, which twists just when you think you're about to be satisfied with a great conclusion into an even better one! This story lives up to that trend. Like much of Ray Bradbury's work it is marked by weirdness and wonder; a little more weird and it's pure fantasy, a little less and it's autobiography. Bradbury's mix makes for an fast-paced and thoroughly enjoyable read!

5-0 out of 5 stars Take the time to read this book!
Ray Bradbury is noted for his science fiction books, which I have never read, but I was recommended this book (his rare effort to write in a genre that he loved - the mystery novel.This is a remarkable story of love and friendship and it also has a true psycopathic killer in it.The book is peopled with wonderful eccentric characters and its setting is a dying 1950's California seaside town.This is an evocative and eerie novel, and it will keep you turning the pages until you finish.If Ray Bradbury can write like this, perhaps I should read some of his better known stories.I have seldom read a book that held so many truly wonderful characters. ... Read more





... Read more

Customer Reviews (16)

2-0 out of 5 stars Adds Nothing
The story is very good. But it's the same story that is in the original novel. Nothing is added to it by making it a graphic novel. The ambiguous ending of the original novel is lost. Many other small elements are lost as well. The art is okay, I don't really have any problem with it. It feels stiff in places, but nothing to noticeable. The use of color is done very well.

I'm a long time comic book reader, I love them. But just because something CAN be turned into a comic, doesn't mean it SHOULD be. Especially when when it adds nothing to the story. In short... go read the original novel.

5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent visual rendition of this classic, dark novel
As a devoted lover of books, the novel "Fahrenheit 451" is one that I find most disturbing. In general, books and learning have been banned from the public arena; people are now entertained by multiple wall-sized screens showing very simple-minded scenes. The new laws are of recent vintage, for there are still ex-professors in existence and they talk about teaching from books. Firefighters now start fires, when a cache of books is reported; they race to the location and burn the house and books. War is also a constant thing, as is always the case; it is used by the government to justify many of the things it does.
Guy Montag is a fireman that has for years been a loyal soldier in the fight to eradicate books. However, his chance encounter with a young and free thinking girl causes him to have doubts as to the rightness of his cause. Those doubts grow and he tries to enlist the aid of his wife, an action of little value for she is an empty intellectual vessel. Eventually, Guy becomes a full member of the "opposition", largely the remaining intelligentsia, where the goal is to preserve the literary heritage of humanity.
Hamilton does an excellent job in capturing the essence of the novel in his images and the selection of the abbreviated dialog. The images are dark and unpleasant, exactly what should be used to depict such a dark and foreboding society. People are fundamentally unhappy, yet they are so doped by the mindlessness of their daily experience that they have even lost their ability to openly express unhappiness and resentment.

4-0 out of 5 stars Visually inspired
This adaptation is rich in amazing color-schemes and beautiful renderings. My only qualm is with the sometimes not-so-seamless transitioning, but it didn't bother me.

5-0 out of 5 stars Review of Hamilton's Bradbury
This is a really enjoyable adaption. What better work to turn into a graphic novel? On the one hand, the work itself has a critical vision of comics as a degradation of literature. On the other hand, this new, diverse turn of a classic tale rallies against the forces of censorship. In any case, the work itself is astounding; its drawings are great and it seems to follow the novel word-for-word. Not to miss!

5-0 out of 5 stars A great addition to the origninal
This updated adaptation to Bradbury's classic is visually appealing and will hopefully lead a new generation to read his work when they otherwise would not pick up a book. I really enjoyed this graphic novel. It was very close to original book and some of the half and full panel images take your breath away. ... Read more

20. Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451: The Authorized Adaptation
by Ray Bradbury
Paperback: 160 Pages (2009-07-21)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$6.00
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 080905101X
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

*****

“Monday burn Millay, Wednesday Whitman, Friday Faulkner, burn ’em to ashes, then burn the ashes.”
 
For Guy Montag, a career fireman for whom kerosene is perfume, this is not just an official slogan. It is a mantra, a duty, a way of life in a tightly monitored world where thinking is dangerous and books are forbidden.
 
In 1953, Ray Bradbury envisioned one of the world’s most unforgettable dystopian futures, and in Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, the artist Tim Hamilton translates this frightening modern masterpiece into a gorgeously imagined graphic novel. As could only occur with Bradbury’s full cooperation in this authorized adaptation, Hamilton has created a striking work of art that uniquely captures Montag’s awakening to the evil of government-controlled thought and the inestimable value of philosophy, theology, and literature.
 
Including an original foreword by Ray Bradbury and fully depicting the brilliance and force of his canonic and beloved masterwork, Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 is an exceptional, haunting work of graphic literature.
Amazon.com Review
Book Description
"Monday burn Millay, Wednesday Whitman, Friday Faulkner, burn ’em to ashes, then burn the ashes." For Guy Montag, a career fireman for whom kerosene is perfume, this is not just an official slogan. It is a mantra, a duty, a way of life in a tightly monitored world where thinking is dangerous and books are forbidden.

In 1953, Ray Bradbury envisioned one of the world's most unforgettable dystopian futures, and in Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, the artist Tim Hamilton translates this frightening modern masterpiece into a gorgeously imagined graphic novel. As could only occur with Bradbury's full cooperation in this authorized adaptation, Hamilton has created a striking work of art that uniquely captures Montag's awakening to the evil of government-controlled thought and the inestimable value of philosophy, theology, and literature.

Including an original foreword by Ray Bradbury and fully depicting the brilliance and force of his canonic and beloved masterwork, Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451 is an exceptional, haunting work of graphic literature.

Look Inside This Stunning Adaptation of Fahrenheit 451
In the panels below, fireman Guy Montag returns home after a night of burning books and encounters Clarice, a teenager who changes his life.
Click on each image to enlarge.



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