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Quicker Than the Eye
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Quicker Than the Eye

3.76 of 5 stars 3.76  ·  rating details  ·  1,074 ratings  ·  66 reviews
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 sec...more
Paperback, 304 pages
Published October 1st 1997 by Avon (first published 1996)
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TK421
I have been a devoted Bradbury fan since I first read FARENHEIT 451 in high school. Some say he is over the top; I say they are too closed in their thinking.

Granted, Bradbury is an acquired taste. His word choice is unique, confounding, and even sometimes bizarre. But after reading one of stories, you will understand why he chose to describe something the way he did.

Some of the earlier reviews about Bradbury's works have stated that he has focused too much on the dying notion of a 40s or 50s c...more
Tracey
I picked up Quicker Than The Eye at the library this weekend, and read thru this short story collection as an antidote to Running with Scissors.

The first few stories "Unterseaboat Doktor" and "Zaharoff/Richter Mark V" didn't do much to dispel my depressed mood. However, "Another Fine Mess" (his second tribute to Laurel and Hardy) made me smile and I settled once again into his fantastic world.

IMHO, Bradbury is a master of the short story - if you've avoided his work because of the science-fict...more
Clare
Bradbury continues to be one of my favorite writers. His concepts are elegant and his word choice is magical.

My favorite stories in this collection are: Last Rites, Zaharoff/Richter Mark V and Exchange.

Many readers skip the "afterwords" of a book - this one is worth reading. I found myself wondering, "where does Bradbury conjure up these themes & characters?" The "afterwords" will shed insight and will inspire you as both a reader & a writer.

Although Bradbury says he is not a magician, t...more
Mark Oppenlander
Here's yet another collection of Bradbury short stories, most of them new to me. However, as my Bradbury reading project continues, and I get into his later works, I find much of what I'm reading strangely familiar.

It's not that these stories are bad; some of them are quite good. But it is clear that certain themes and motifs are recurring here, circling up from earlier phases of Bradbury's illustrious career. For example, there is a story about an electrocution act at a circus, another about a...more
Marvin
Nov 14, 2010 Marvin rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: The die-hard Bradbury fan
Shelves: fantasy
This 1996 collection of later short tales illustrates just how subjective the measurement of a literary genius can be. If these short stories were written by a new writer the critics would be raving. But these pieces are written by a older gentlemen whose genius has already been proven and proven again. Bradbury's masterpiece collections of short fiction will always be books like The Martian Chronicle and The Illustrated Man. The stories in Quicker Than The Eye are beautifully written but they d...more
Sheila
Quicker Than The Eye, as per my previous Bradbury reading experiences, leaves me with the wonderful sensation of recognition, of having found answers to questions I could never consciously formulate and thoughts I was never aware of thinking; emotions I thought too elusive and varied to be caught on paper.

His writing brings to mind bedrock and soil. It's solid, and fertile. As occasionally fantastic as his storytelling is, it consistently has a sense of purpose. Proclamation wrapped in poetry....more
Me
Not only was it a great book, I was fortunate enough to meet (briefly) Ray Bradbury and have him autograph a copy!
Danielle
:) I very much needed to be reminded of why I love reading and this did just the trick! I find his style of writing to be the perfect mix of adult/child imagination and he's never afraid to be a little morbid!
My favorite story by far in this book is titled The Very Gentle Murders. A very old married couple decided that they agree that they hate each others guts and happily decide to make a game of assassination attempts. Some of which go a little haywire!
Other notable mentions are:
Unterderseab...more
Jeanette
"'Have I ever lied to you?'
'Many times!'
'But' - he shrugged - 'little white ones.'" (4)
...
"'Have I ever lied to you?'
'Often. But,' I added, 'little white ones.'" (14)

"'...Our faces, don't you think? Smiles that made our jaws ache. We were exploding. They got the concussion.'" (35)

"The carnival was either setting up in a new town or letting go; its brown tents inhaling by ay, exhaling its stale air by night as the canvases slid rustling down along the dark poles." (56)

"'You know, I dislike you...more
Al

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 w

...more
Aristotle Johns
I now realize that this is one of Bradbury's more neglected works. A reason for this escapes me because in my eyes (after only 3 of Bradbury's works) this is him at his most human. He interweaves metaphors with short vignettes and he does something that most authors rarely do. He asks the reader questions. Question after question. Leaving the reader to answer them but his book, an eloquent inquisitor, stands as one of my favorites.
Ellice
Really good stuff; much preferable to the last book of later Ray Bradbury stories I read (Driving Blind). Giant spiders, ex-Nazi psychiatrists, ghosts, time travel--in the hands of any other author, it would be ridiculous. But even the most crazy-sounding stories (including "Dorian in Excelsus," an inspired bit of The Picture of Dorian Gray meeting H.P. Lovecraft) are wonderful, and poetic, and just lovely in all ways, as Bradbury so often is.

Sigh.
James
"make haste to live." just about the penultimate sentence written in this book, part of ray bradbury's afterword (and the title of the same), and excellent advice. for, if we don't make haste to live, that which we're living for -- the impulses and desires and ideas -- might leave us in the lurch.

and that's what this collection of stories does the best -- celebrates and worships the pinhole-camera of nostalgia, the widescreen technicolor panorama of the dreams of the future, and the place where...more
Mike
This is a collection of short stories published in 1996. Mr. Barbury and I go way back, not only in terms of his early works (Farhenheit 451, The Illustrated Man, The Martian Chronicles), but also in terms of my own literary appetites. (I "discovered" his books while I was in high school.) I love Ray Bradbury short stories and, although I won't say that this collection is his finest work, it does nothing to diminish my love and admiration for his artistry. Most, if not all, of these stories have...more
Brett
Another collection of short stories from Ray Bradbury that cover a wide array of themes and genres. A handful of the 20 or so stories here are very good--"Bug", "Free Dirt", "The Electrocution"--and there's a group that are sort of interesting ideas, but not well-fleshed out, and there are a group of outright wastes of time. I'm a big Bradbury fan, but I can't in good conscience recommend this book. I'm glad that he's continued to work even as he has gotten older, but a lot of stuff published in...more
Cathrine Bonham
Another amazing collection of short fiction from author Ray Bradbury.

Really really liked the stories titled, "The Finnegan," "The Very Gentle Murders" and "Last Rites."

The first is a very entertining adventure/mystery in the style of Conan Doyle's Holmes tales.

The second is an example of how apperances can be deciving. When a seemingly "loving" couple make a game out of trying to murder each other their maid and all of their friends get caught in the crosshairs.

And the last story that I have sel...more
Frank
Ray Bradbury passed away on June 5th. After hearing about his death, I finally got around to reading one of his story collections that has been on my shelf for a couple of years. I always enjoy Bradbury and this collection was no exception. While I enjoyed some of the stories more than others, overall I would highly recommend this collection. I especially liked "Another Fine Mess" about the ghostly doings of Laurel and Hardy, "Quicker Than the Eye", about a quick sideshow pickpocket, "The Finneg...more
Georgene
Aug 28, 2014 Georgene rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Georgene by: Philip Wickstrand
Shelves: fantasy
A nice, interesting collection of some of Ray Bradbury's later short stories. As with most short story collections, some are better than others, but this volume is one to add to your reading list.
Angela
This was an odd collection of short stories combined into one book. I didn't realize it at first, reading the first chapter thinking, this is odd...then going to the second chapter where they were all new characters.

It was, however, intriguing enough to keep my attention to the very end. I think this is an excellent illustration of Bradbury's writing process, the ideas and formations of his main stories, and it was interesting to see the stories develop and come to their conclusions. I also enj...more
Michael Tildsley
Definitely not my favorite Bradbury short fiction collection, though there are some really fine stories to be found here. "No News, Or What Killed the Dog?" was one of the most beautiful and perfect short stories that highlights a difficulty in the life of every pet owner. It's what I would call quintessential Bradbury: nostalgia laced with a sense of gentile humanity embraced by community.

My favorites in this set were:

"Zaharoff/Richter Mark V"
"The Finnegan"
"The Very Gentle Murders"
"No News, Or...more
Jacob
"Obviously, none of us had come to escape the world outside, but rather to have it tossed back at us in more easily digested forms, brighter, cleaner, quicker, neater; a spectacle both heartening and melancholy." (from "Quicker Than the Eye," p. 126)"

This is a pleasant collection of stories that I would rate a 3.5 if allowed. I was planning to bump it up to four stars, but the afterword, which was probably meant to be inspirational, came off as more of a pompous "How DO I do it?!" and gave a po...more
Aaron
An anthology of (to me) lesser known short stories of his.
I was surprised by how many of them have to plot, but are in stead, a scene.
He's an amazing writer, and this is a fun, fast read.
Jocelyn
Feb 12, 2014 Jocelyn marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Rochelle Oliver's reading of Exchange on Selected Shorts - amazing.
Katie M.
I was somewhat disappointed by this short story collection. Many of the stories aren't sf at all–not a problem per se, but not what I was expecting or looking for. Regardless of genre, I found many of the stories dull and/or annoyingly nostalgic. Bradbury's prose is elegant, but the dialog frequently seems a bit off to me. The creepier stories are generally the best of the bunch. I almost stopped reading part way through, but I'm glad I finished the book because the second half did have more sto...more
Warren Watts
Simply put, Ray Bradbury was one of the best short story authors who ever lived. He had a way of transforming the commonplace into something deeply meaningful and magical.

It doesn't matter if you are a seasoned fan of Ray Bradbury's work or someone new to his prose; you will find this book delightful.

I especially enjoyed Hopscotch, a story about a girl on the cusp of adulthood.
Kjersti
I had high expectations for Ray Bradbury’s collection of short stories, unfortunately my expectations were not met.

I have been captivated by his audio readings of other short stories, but this collection was no where near the intensity or creativity of his others. It almost felt like I was reading through a bunch of assignments that Bradbury was forced to write.

Too bad.
Louise
I like Ray Bradbury's stories, but I didn't think this book contained his best. There were a couple that stuck with me, but a few I didn't understand at all. I don't know whether it's because I'm getting older or he is, but sometimes his writing was a little trite and cliche. Overall, it was easy to read, but I wouldn't recommend it as the best sample of his work.
Kirstin
Though considered "science fiction", this book is more of a collection of short stories that tend to contain the emotions of nostalgia and sentimentalism. Some of the stories left me completely confused but it was still well done.

Did I mention that I got it signed by Mr. Bradbury himself? He was a fantastic speaker and I am honored to have met him.
Ryne Pearson
Bradbury is truly one of the greats. More a speculative fiction writer than hard science fiction, the tales in this collection of stories delve deeper into the personal and let the fantastical exist as an accessory. This is not a bad thing, as it allows a healthy dose of whimsy (which Bradbury has always been capable of) to spice each story.

Recommended.
Jimenez
The mind of Ray Bradbury is truly gracious, in that it creates vivid images that the graphic mind can map out in the core of the imagination. Illusive pictures that when crafted into words and perceived by the mind, can fully become a short film running in oue head; little scenes depicting different worlds in different ways.
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1630
American novelist, short story writer, essayist, playwright, screenwriter and poet, was born August 22, 1920 in Waukegan, Illinois. He graduated from a Los Angeles high school in 1938. Although his formal education ended there, he became a "student of life," selling newspapers on L.A. street corners from 1938 to 1942, spending his nights in the public library and his days at the typewriter. He bec...more
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“Forgive, I hope you won't be upset, but when I was a boy I used to look up and see you behind your desk, so near but far away, and, how can I say this, I used to think that you were Mrs. God, and that the library was a whole world, and that no matter what part of the world or what people or thing I wanted to see and read, you'd find and give it to me.” 8 likes
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