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Quicker Than the Eye

3.79  ·  Rating Details ·  1,336 Ratings  ·  90 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

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Hardcover, 272 pages
Published December 18th 1998 by Severn House Publishers Ltd (first published 1996)
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TK421
Feb 21, 2011 TK421 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, short-stories
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
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Tracey
Nov 21, 2007 Tracey rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: libraryread
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
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Clare
Oct 17, 2009 Clare rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
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John
Jun 14, 2015 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yet another excellent collection of short stories by one of the all-time masters of the form, this volume, from the mid 90s, shows that Bradbury had not slowed down one whit, more than fifty years into his career. Not all of these nuggets are masterpieces, but those that fall short are flawed gems, and still a joy to read. "Zaharoff/Richter Mark V"; "The Finnegan"; "Dorian In Excelsus"; "The Ghost In The Machine"; "Bug"; and "Once More, Legato" are all either too far-fetched or too rough around ...more
Sheila
Dec 02, 2009 Sheila rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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.
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Jon
Mar 23, 2016 Jon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I've yet to go wrong reading Ray Bradbury, and that's why it's safe to consider him one of my all-time favorite authors. While I certainly haven't read his work as extensively as many others, everything I've come across turns out to be wonderful and imaginative and thought-provoking and charming. I never even heard of Quicker Than the Eye until I found it at my local bookstore and couldn't resist the temptation of adding yet another novel to my shelves. It's not one of his more popular collectio ...more
Noah
Mar 12, 2016 Noah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Ray Bradbury is a genius. There isn't a way around that fact. He is a genius. In his novels, he takes on the world. His short stories are much more personal and tackle something a good deal less tangible than the world: he takes on the soul.
Bradbury makes me want to cry. Or laugh. Or scream. But mostly he makes me want to sit in bed, drink tea, listen to jazz, and read.
I marvel at his creative abilities. In "Zaharoff/Richter Mark V" he paints architects as the rulers of our world. In "Another
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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
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Philip Cosand
There are some stories in this collection that rate 5-stars. In particular, the master thief and what it says about the author as well as the crowd is completely brilliant. His insights on marriage are delightful.

And yet, there are some stories that left me shrugging. The first one out of the book left me shrugging my shoulders and hoping for better.

Dorian in Excelsis is a witty social commentary. Witch Door is suitably creepy. But it is Quicker than the Eye that makes the book worth reading.

A
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Jen
Dec 07, 2014 Jen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ray Bradbury never fails in reminding me why I love reading so very much. His writing, in this case- his short stories, is the perfect blend of whimsical and melancholy. He makes me laugh, he chokes me up, he makes me think, he makes me want to write - because he makes it looks so simple. It feels as though the answers to life's most burning questions are buried between the lines of his stories and if I can only open my mind up enough, while reading them, revelations will reveal themselves. Even ...more
Marvin
Nov 14, 2010 Marvin rated it liked it  ·  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
Raj
Oct 14, 2014 Raj rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
This collection is from the later part of Bradbury's life, with the stories all being from the 1990s. There is a mix of SF and non-SF stories, but all share the wonderfully lyrical writing that I find so appealing.

This wasn't the strongest Bradbury collection that I've read, but there are still some great stories here. In terms of SF, Another Fine Mess is both a slightly creepy ghost story and a warm tribute to Laurel and Hardy. That Woman on the Lawn is another ghost story, this time with a dif
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Me
Feb 01, 2011 Me rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
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Jeanette
Dec 13, 2013 Jeanette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"'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
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Al
Feb 07, 2013 Al rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

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
Kyla
May 22, 2015 Kyla rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ray Bradbury, how do I love thee? Your writing is so lyrical and melodic; it draws you into the worlds you create, from the mundane to the fantastical. This short story collection has many delightful tales. We learn what happens to the picture of Dorian Gray after the novel's end. We follow as a family takes a forgotten and abandoned highway out of a major city. We encounter a genteel old married couple who politely try to kill each other. We relive youth through a young woman on the verge of 17 ...more
Aristotle Johns
Jul 15, 2014 Aristotle Johns rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
Nov 08, 2009 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"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
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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
Luisa
I feel like I say the same thing every time I review Bradbury. Anyways, of course this one is great, although I've read better collections of his. Still, you can't really go wrong with accidental elderly assassins, and Witch Doors, and, like I always say, I'm pretty sure Bradbury is incapable of writing anything bad.
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
Manuel Alfonseca
21 short stories by Ray Bradbury, showing his unmistakable style. There were seven I liked a lot, specially one (Exchange) about the love for books and the long-lasting influence of thoughtful librarians on children. Just one or two of these stories are SF, the others are about the everyday world.
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
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Frank
Jul 29, 2012 Frank rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
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
Chris Langer
Jan 22, 2016 Chris Langer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I found this gem of a book at my local library for a quarter the other weekend. 'Quicker Than the Eye' is filled with several excellent short stories, each quick to digest but fascinating on the mind. 'Exchange', in particular, was a truly wonderful read. Mr. Bradbury is simply a literary wizard.
Jill
Jul 21, 2015 Jill rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Short story collection - I had read them before, but didn't recall the stories until the middle of the book. While they are interesting stories, only a couple have any sort of happiness to them. Most are dark or disturbing.
Georgene
Aug 28, 2014 Georgene rated it liked it  ·  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
Aug 06, 2010 Angela rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
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
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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.” 12 likes
“That's all science fiction was ever about. Hating the way things are, wanting to make things different.” 4 likes
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