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Killer, Come Back To Me: The Crime Stories of Ray Bradbury

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  193 ratings  ·  42 reviews
Celebrating Ray Bradbury's centenary, this collection commemorates his finest crime stories – tales as strange and wonderful as his signature fantasy.

Time travellers…dark carnivals…living automata…and detectives? Honouring the 100th birthday of Ray Bradbury, renowned author of Fahrenheit 451, this new, definitive collection of the master's less well-known crime fiction fea
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Kindle Edition
Published August 18th 2020
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Dave
Ray Bradbury is a master storyteller. That is, he is one of those people who is such a great storyteller that he could write in any genre or on any topic and every sentence would be a juicy morsel. Best known as a science fiction writer and, indeed, best known as a giant in the science fiction world, Bradbury also penned numerous crime fiction tales, particularly in his early formative writing years. Collected here for your reading enjoyment, Hard Case Crime has packaged in one reasonably-sized ...more
Bam cooks the books ;-)
Celebrating what would have been Ray Bradbury's 100th birthday with this publication of a collection of twenty of his crime short stories. I was introduced to Ray Bradbury's scifi short stories many years ago when I read The Illustrated Man and The Martian Chronicles--and I've never forgotten my enjoyment of them.

Here is my first taste of his crime stories: some are more successful than others, some are dated, but all are entertaining. There is an introduction Bradbury wrote many years ago that
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Sara (groovysarareads)
“A heart is an erratic thing. Like mercury. It scurries all over a person’s insides.”

Did I just read a collection of 20 short stories and... love them all? This is unreal. I’ve barely touched a Bradbury novel before and I’m totally kicking myself. This is the most perfect mixture of crime, science fiction & horror! We begin with a time traveling paradox and then weave through stories of women buried in vacant lots, carnivals of mysterious murder, a woman stored away inside of a trunk in an attic
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Truman32
Oct 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Short stories are like quick sordid alcohol-fueled trysts with strangers, usually taking place in public parks or alleyways in the wee hours when most god-fearing people are safely tucked away in bed. Ultimately, they leave you unsatisfied, hungry for more and filled with a level of self-disgust normally experienced only by cigarette manufacturers, the guy who flips the electric chair on-switch, and members of popular soft rock band Bread. I much prefer the long-term commitment of a hefty novel. ...more
The Face of Your Father
'Killer, Come Back to Me' is a recently released collection of crime short stories by prolific author Ray Bradbury to celebrate what would have been his 100th birthday. ⁣

An author finding themselves within the crime genre may feel shackled by the limitations it stereotypically has to offer. Bradbury embraces these expectations of straightforwardness and uses it to his advantage; adding a whimsical flare and darkly fantastical twists to the majority of these stories. The blend of such elements e
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Cal Brunsdon
Oct 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lauded as one of the all-time American visionaries of genre fiction, (and rightly so), what can be said about the work of Ray Bradbury that hasn’t been stated a thousandfold? My answer: the man could write a whodunnit just as tightly and densely as any rocket ship trip to Mars.

In this illustrated centenary collection, 20 of Bradbury’s short stories from a range of publications explore every facet of what we could generously consider “crime fiction”, but with that biting, fantastical and supreme
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Owen Townend
Jan 10, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bradbury embraces hard-boiled crime in this great short story collection. If you assumed that the writer was just too optimistic and lovable for murder in cold blood then you thought wrong.

Killer, Come Back To Me contains some of the sharpest and most cunning stories I've ever seen from the man. He may attest in the afterword that he is no Hammett, Chandler or Cain but there are some short gems in here that would fit quite comfortably in their company.

Of course Bradbury does maintain his favoure
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Jessica
Dec 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to Hard Case Crime for the free early copy in exchange for my honest review

We all know Ray Bradbury for his works of science fiction, but I had never known that he also wrote quite a few crime fiction stories. There is such a wide variety of topics, perspectives, and characters within this book and I think each one brings something different to the table. Considering the size of the book, there is a surprising amount of short stories here, but I can’t say there were any that I disliked.

Si
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Kevin
Aug 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hard Case Crime celebrates the centennial anniversary of Ray Bradbury's birth with KILLER, COME BACK TO ME, an outstanding collection of 20 of his best mystery and crime stories. Although Bradbury is remembered for his prolific science fiction and fantasy writings, he periodically branched out into other genres. The majority of these stories were published in the 1940s and '50s in magazines like "Dime Mystery," "Weird Tales" and "Detective Tales." "The good stories you write later are an umbrell ...more
Jeanette
Sep 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
These short stories are pure Bradbury--excellent descriptive writing, taut dialogue and interesting and quirky characters with some supernatural aspects thrown in. Great little murder mysteries that don't take long to read. Folks who like mysteries and folks who like Bradbury will both enjoy this book!! ...more
Bookreporter.com Mystery & Thriller
Ray Bradbury would have turned 100 years old on August 22, 2020. Hard Case Crime has commemorated his centennial by gathering some of his earliest short fiction into a beautifully bound volume, KILLER, COME BACK TO ME, which consists of 20 stories and 11 illustrations. It is a must-have addition to any home library where reading is valued.

Bradbury is primarily known for his science fiction and fantasy stories. The titles are synonymous with his name: DANDELION WINE, FAHRENHEIT 451, THE MARTIAN C
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Norman
Feb 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
A present from my wife - she knew I love Bradbury's writing style and imagination- she does too! There are some stories here never anthologised before which is really exciting. Twenty wonderful Bradbury tales of murder, crime, jealousy etc. My favourites were "A Touch of Petulance" - A young man meets an older man on the commuter train home, and discovers that the older man is the key to his future, and may help prevent a murder from happening. Then there's "Some Live Like Lazarus" where a long- ...more
Jack19
Feb 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When it comes to Ray Bradbury & short story collections, you’re pretty much guaranteed 3 things; ideas, finesse & brevity. You’ll get a stimulating course of allegories & “what ifs” that are playful, thoughtful & invariably held together by his dazzling prose & penchant for the macabre. Ok, so maybe more than just 3 things.

Killer, Come Back to Me follows in the footsteps of some of Bradbury’s best compendiums. It features 20 crime stories from his gargantuan arsenal of shorts that were handpicke
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Rupert
Dec 09, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It’s been a long time since I read Bradbury but when I heard of this Hard Case anthology I was excited to dip back in.
The stories that are more crime oriented are fun, but don’t stand out much from other standard pulp of that time, but the ones dealing with horror themes show Bradbury’s strong talent and are captivating. I’d forgotten how moving and authentic his writing from the perspective of pre-teens can be. Capturing their concerns and obsessions and not portraying their emotions as shall
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Beth Roberts
I loved Ray Bradbury's suspense novels. I never see anyone mention them when they talk about him. As soon as I saw this book was being published last fall, I immediately preordered it.

Many of the stories appearing here were from very early in Bradbury's career, and truthfully, they felt like it. However, there are some real gems here, but in particular the final story, The Utterly Perfect Murder. It's very short but it's an ode to his Greentown Trilogy. It's nostalgic, poignant and Bradbury's p
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Rabb_eye
Jun 03, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow! This Bradbury guy can write!

Naturally, I was already quite familiar with Ray Bradbury writing about Martians, Halloween, and assorted spooky and fantastic experiences. Over the years, however, he wrote quite a lot of crime fiction in pulp (and other) magazines, too.

All previously published material, but only a couple I recalled reading before. The classic "Marionettes, Inc" is here, alongside another from that same world, which I hadn't read. And, of course, "The Small Assassin." Most of t
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Roger
Jan 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Killer, Come Back to Me was wonderful-it was so nice to have some new (to me) Ray Bradbury to read. I probably should have taken longer and savored these stories but I just couldn't-I went through this book like summer lightning. Some of these selections were actually old favorites (The Fruit at the Bottom of the Bowl, The Screaming Woman) but most were tales I had never stumbled upon before. All of them were very enjoyable, despite Bradbury's own comments about these stories. (We are often our ...more
Maxine
Mar 02, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Killer, Come Back to Me is a collection of short stories by Ray Bradbury written in the 1940s. They are mostly noir mysteries, some with a touch of the supernatural. There's conjoined twins, murder at the circus, and an assassin that might make you reconsider ever having kids. Most importantly, they are entertaining with a nice touch of creepy and I recommend it highly to any Ray Bradbury fans or just people who enjoy well-written mystery short stories that are just a little outside the norm.

Tha
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MH
Dec 14, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This collection of Bradbury's crime stories concludes with a piece he wrote called "Hammet? Chandler? Not to Worry" where he discusses how he was "never a threat" to the great hard-boiled writers. He's not wrong - writing about urban crime, femme fatales and desperate sexuality really aren't his strength - but most of the stories here wisely keep away from the mean streets and are highly enjoyable, and some are absolute gems (especially, for me, the opening and closing stories, "A Touch of Petul ...more
Jesse Roberts
I'm jealous of the Dime Detective era. I think reading these types of collections helps me experience a little something of that time. And I'm a big fan of Ray Bradbury. So, when I stumbled across this book at the library, and figured I should read it.

Bradbury gives a great voice to the excitement of pondering on doing wrong and then the inevitable regret afterward. I think he is unique in his approach compared to other '40s crime stories. There were 3 or 4 stories in here I really enjoyed but
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Brandy
Feb 15, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021
Fabulous stories- a mix of crime noir and Twilight Zone. I can also tell most of these stories were written early in his career. His later stories, and especially Fahrenheit 451, are written using a different syntax- lots of commas, lengthy sentences, much more descriptive language. These stories were excellent- clear, sharp writing. If you've never watched an interview with Bradbury, go to Youtube and find one. He's entertaining and just a wonderful guy. ...more
Angus McKeogh
I was marginally entertained by a few of the early stories in the book and had to trudge through the last half just to finish. Some of Bradbury’s science fiction stories are unparalleled. I’d say his crime fiction leaves a lot to be desired. And to be fair the essay at the end explains this very statement. Without trying to be too harsh I’d say these stories were dated and among his early efforts.
Donald
Sep 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Hard to think that a single drop of ink could color a whole pitcher of clear fresh water. But color it could and color it did.”

Lots of good short stories in this volume! One story is the murder of a conjoined twin! Two others are the “same” tale, one done from the perspective of the victim, the other from the killer! There are also two stories with creepy ‘marionettes’! And, the classic, “The Small Assassin”! The book ends with "The Utterly Perfect Murder" - a story that really pulled at my hea
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Vincent Lombardo
Dec 17, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I always love short stories. Ray Bradbury does some amazing ones.

While all amazing, I particularly enjoyed "A Touch of Petulance" (Terminator without the Terminator), "I'm Not So Dumb" (predictable but enjoyable), and the double header "The Whole Town's Sleeping / "At Midnight, In the Month of June".
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Daniel Archer
Dec 31, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As Bradbury cheerfully acknowledges, several of these stories simply aren't very good. They're from his formative days. They're clumsy, wooden, experimental, even formulaic. And they lack the easy magic of his efforts in other genres.

This gets four stars because the real Bradbury lurks, with a string of stories toward the end (all of which I have read elsewhere) that are among his best.
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Andrew
Feb 17, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As with most collections, some stories are great, some not so great. A few of the stories collected I had read previously, but they were presented as science fiction or horror stories. It was interesting to see those recontextualized as crime stories in this collection. Crime wasn't Bradbury's main focus and you can tell, but this is a great collection. ...more
Kevin Jones
Sep 17, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you’ve ever wondered about how a master storyteller honed his craft, then you will definitely want to check out this collection. I don’t immediately think of Ray Bradbury as a crime writer, but this collection of his early works from various 1940s pulps proves that his versatility knew no bounds even as he was finding his voice. There really wasn’t a bad story in the collection, even if some are stronger than others. There is also never not a good time to read or re-read A SMALL ASSASSIN or T ...more
Jenna
Oct 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ray Bradbury remains one of my all-time favorite writers and all of the stories contained herein are excellent (unusual for an anthology). But what puts this book over the top is the way this collection provides a fascinating overview of the progression of his writing.
Noah
Sep 25, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good Stuff in a cool format.
Karen
Oct 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed every.single.story.
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Ray Douglas Bradbury, 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 ...more

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