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The Pedestrian: A Fantasy in One Act

3.79  ·  Rating Details ·  490 Ratings  ·  46 Reviews
Published (first published August 7th 1951)
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Best American (US) Short Stories
12th out of 42 books — 10 voters
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Best of Ray Bradbury
71st out of 99 books — 204 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Mila Temnyalova
Dec 20, 2012 Mila Temnyalova rated it it was amazing
We had to read The Pedestrian in English class a couple of weeks back. Since normally the teacher prints out a few passages of long books, what I didn't expect was to come home and google this name, only to find out that those small two pages he gave us was the entire novella!

Despite being incredibly short, The Pedestrian definitely stirred something in me. Imagine this - someone fifty years prior to today describing what the world would be like in a hundred years time. The most ironic part? Som
Wow. Bradbury does it again with this four-page glimpse into a future full of skepticism and fear. Based on an experience in Bradbury's own childhood and said by Bradbury himself to be "the beginning" of Fahrenheit 451, "The Pedestrian" tells of alone man out for a walk at night who is stopped by an empty police car. All the three million citizens of the city are at home watching viewing screens, making cars and police nearly obsolete, and making a single man choosing to go out for air seem ...more
Sep 02, 2016 Katrina rated it it was amazing
Ray Bradbury's writing is simplistic and amazing, with a lot of common themes throughout his stories. The more you read, the more you can enjoy.
Sawyer Hintz
Dec 01, 2015 Sawyer Hintz rated it liked it
Personal Response:
To be honest, at first I didn't understand what exactly the story was about. It was extremely short but I felt like there was a deeper meaning that I wasn't getting completely. Ray Bradbury, as I have said before, has a very descriptive and deep way of writing. But after I looked up some other reviews of the story I got a better understanding of it.

Plot Summary:
The story opens with a lone man walking down the street sometime in November. We get the notion that walking just for
Cadyn Ehrenberg
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Brock Brunner
Mar 16, 2016 Brock Brunner rated it really liked it
Personal Response
I think this was a short but solid book. I felt as if I was truly there in the scene of the book watching it all go down. I like the way Ray Bradbury described everything and it was put together quite well. This was probably one of my favorite short stories so far.

The book starts off with the main character, Leonard Mead, standing at a crosswalk on a cold November night. He continued to walk down the sidewalk, like he has done every night for many years. Leonard loved go
Oct 29, 2015 BRANDON SCHEER rated it it was ok
This short story is about a man, a writer, who walks every night for years. He does this just to go for a nice calm refreshing walk and get some fresh air and be outside. He always minds his own business and tries to be quiet and not disturb anyone. This story takes place the year 2052, it clearly states about halfway through. Also you can tell it is futuristic because he gets stopped by a police car, not an officer but just a car that drives itself and talks. The car is very suspicious abou
Kati Kettleson
Oct 18, 2015 Kati Kettleson rated it liked it
Recommendation: I would recommend this to people who like to think about what the future will be like. I say that because this story could possibly happen in the future years.

Personal Response: I thought this story was interesting. I say that because I think I'd be with the guy walking and wondering what the world has come to. Also it makes me really think what is going to happen in the future generations. Overall it had a good plot to it.

Characterization: In the beginning Leornard Mead sounds
Dylan Snell
Mar 21, 2016 Dylan Snell rated it it was ok
Personal Response:
I thought this was an interesting short story. I thought it was interesting because this story was wrote in the 1950’s, set in a time not far from our current year. It was pretty cool to see what the author thought the world would be like in the 2000’s. It was also freaky to read about people not walking around at all.

Plot Summary:
The story begins with a man walking down a deserted street at night in 2053. He apparently has done this every night for many years. He walks by peop
May 09, 2012 Danny rated it really liked it
This is a ridiculously short novella, but have checked it nonetheless, as it quite simply conveys so much during its few pages - something that can be given interesting perspectives in the world of today.

Basically, it's a dystopia where everyone watches TV. With everyone at home, there's no need for police, so the state has reduced the amount of police cars from 3 to 1.

Now, our protagonist has as his favorite pastime to walk around. Just walk. He encounters the police car, and well, no surprise
Claire Berndt
Jan 11, 2016 Claire Berndt rated it really liked it
Personal Response:I enjoyed this story a lot because it was futuristic and provoked my idea of what the world will be like in the future. I did not really like the way it ended because it left some questions unanswered.

Plot Summary: The story takes place in the year 2053 and follows a man named Leonard Mead. He walks alone every night for eight years straight. He says he is alone in the world but later we find out that he is not actually alone. Everyone else is in their house watching televisio
Padriac Hickey
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Bülent Özgün
Mar 20, 2016 Bülent Özgün rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bir Ray Bradbury uzmanı olduğumu söyleyemem. Onun dünyasına sadece bir roman (Fahrenheit 451) ve bir öykü kitabı ile girdim (Son Yaya). Çıkarımlarım yanlı ve yanlış olabilir ama bu okumalar, bana Ray Bradbury’nin bilim kurgu veya fantastik hikâyeler yazarken işin insan tarafına daha çok eğildiğini gösterdi. Bradbury bize olağandışı bir hikâye anlatırken insanı insan kılan temel hislerin yok oluşundan doğan dehşeti daha iyi aktarabilmek için bu yolu kullanıyor bana göre.

Son Yaya adlı öykü kitabın
Quick and very interesting read.
Tim Vandenberg
Jan 18, 2014 Tim Vandenberg rated it it was amazing
Based on an actual event in Bradbury's young life in Los Angeles (the main character's address is that of Bradbury in Venice, CA), this is a very poignant short story of an all-too-real, now-present/near-future time when walking the sidewalks is nigh-illegal while people instead should be staring at their TV screens all night long in their mausoleum-like homes:

"The tombs, ill-lit by television light, where the people sat like the dead, the gray or multicolored lights touching their expressionles
Rayvon Grudowski
Oct 26, 2015 Rayvon Grudowski rated it liked it
Personal Response: I liked this story because, it had a very easy flowing and had a tense but relayed a fantasy feeling too it. It did end a little too soon. I hoped there would be more, but the author kind of left the reader on a huge cliff hanger.
Plot Summary: This story was about a man in a city who has taken walks in his city every day for about ten years. Everyone else stays nice and coddled in the jail cells of a home, but the man in the story loved to go on walks in the city. He walked a
Nelson Lagiono
May 04, 2013 Nelson Lagiono rated it it was amazing
I reckon, this was very good and interesting short story.

I recommend, that 13 and up should read this because a younger audience reading wouldn't understand what is happening or will just get bored of it.I decided to read this because, we had to read for class time to answer some questions and i wish i read it before and it is Ray's opinion of what the future would be like.

The category that i am doing in the bingo board is the book with a male main character and he is so different to everyone
Jan 13, 2015 Patricia rated it it was amazing
I have read three short stories by Ray Bradbury; and I have to say, I love all three. He strikes something deep within me. This is a work of fiction, but it speaks so much truth. We are already losing touch with the world around us: more and more we spend hours upon hours in front of the television. Our brains are wasting away while our waist bands expand. For a person to watch television rather than reading a novel, or taking a brisk walk at night, will become the norm. You will be considered ...more
Tansie G.
Aug 26, 2015 Tansie G. rated it it was amazing
"The Pedestrian" is so extremely short that I really shouldn't have even counted it for my reading challenge. It's only four pages-- or, if you want to get really specific-- three and a half. It's teeny. I found out about it through my English class. I'd heard of Ray Bradbury, but I'd never read any of his stuff. Am I going to read more after this? Um, yes.

The imagery is incredible. His descriptions are so vivid you can see the dark neighborhood, taste the air, and feel Mead's (the main charact
Apr 08, 2015 Julie rated it liked it
I really did enjoy this short story by Ray Bradbury. It is supposedly (and I don't know how accurate I am in saying this) that it provides a different scene in a key point that happens in Fahrenheit 421. However, if you are looking for a great short story by Bradbury, I would definitely recommend There Will Come Soft Rains (my personal favorite). The Pedestrian is definitely a worth while read though.
Es otro cuento interesante y según leí, el autor se inspiró porque le paso algo similar una vez. Lo único que no me gusta de este cuento y de todo lo demás que he leído de Bradbury es que sus finales son muy abruptos y abiertos.
Habiendo leído 3 cuentos y su novela Fahrenheit 451; definitivamente el era mejor en cuentos cortos. Mi favorito es "the playground".
Leeré más de él, pero creo que solo cuentos. (No se si tiene más novelas).
Nov 04, 2013 Natalie rated it liked it
"Magazines and books didn't sell anymore. Everything went on in the tomblike houses at night now, he thought, continuing his fancy. The tombs, ill-lit by television light, where the people sat like the dead, the gray or multicolored lights touching their faces, but never really touching them."

Another short story I found on the podcast Selected Shorts.
Bam Eaton
Oct 15, 2014 Bam Eaton rated it it was amazing
I've never really been a great reader, I get distracted too easily, but Ray Bradbury's short stories are amazing.

I really enjoyed reading this and kinda wished it was longer, but the more I read his short stories, the more I want to read his novels.

I love the way Bradbury writes his stories, they pull me in instantly.
Nov 17, 2011 Tash rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I thought this one was WEIRD! Set in 2052, no one but some lonely man walked the streets while everyone stayed inside to watch TV. It has good metaphors and similes, but I don't think that this could actually happen. There will always be more than one oddball in a community.
Chandler Banic
Jan 18, 2015 Chandler Banic rated it it was amazing
This was a great story. It makes you think about what is going on in the world such as technology taking over and ruining the simple things like taking night walks around enjoying the fresh air. The story is kind of depressing. The ending leaves you thinking.
Oct 11, 2015 miketheboy89 rated it liked it
Once again, Ray Bradbury is able to write a classic in only a few pages. His use of contrast in setting and analogies draw attention to the melancholic future theme of the story. Excellent descriptions and interesting metaphors make another classic.
Mister Future [formerly known as 'Pizzle']
Interesting, eerie, and thought-provoking... would you expect any different from Bradbury?

4/5 Stars
Amy  Lawson
Jun 07, 2016 Amy Lawson rated it it was amazing
Shelves: great-classics
I love his ideas on future and find it eerily similar to things we are experiencing now. Great class lesson on where we may be heading if we don't take caution
Apr 25, 2015 Sherilyn rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio
If you are a walker who often feels like the only person out there and socially unacceptable to boot, Ray Bradbury has summed it up nicely.
Jun 14, 2012 Andrew rated it it was amazing
It was Fahrenheit 451 in two pages. And, to my tastes, the better for it.

I read it online here courtesy of James:
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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 ...more
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“The multicolored or grey lights touching their faces, but never really touching them...” 5 likes
“Business or profession?'
'I guess you'd call me a writer.'
No profession,' said the police car, as if talking to itself. The light held him fixed, like a museum specimen, needle thrust through chest.”
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