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Marionettes, Inc.

3.94  ·  Rating Details ·  196 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
In Marionettes, Inc., Ray Bradbury offers his devoted readers something both special and unexpected: a unified view of one small corner of a varied fictional universe. In five stories (one of them original to this collection, plus a rare, previously unpublished screen treatment), Bradbury explores the concept of Robotics and examines its impact on the day-to-day lives of o ...more
Hardcover, 118 pages
Published April 1st 2009 by Subterranean Press
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Marc Lalonde
Apr 11, 2014 Marc Lalonde rated it did not like it
Please, do not spend money on this short story collection, 'short' being the operative word, since it can be read in entirety in less than an hour. It contains only one new story, a very short story which is quite forgettable and which comes across as an elderly lament over current technology, as in "too many smart phones, too many internets...". One of the 'stories' is a 'play' treatment that is just a re-write of another story from this same collection. But, if you must pick this up because of ...more
Mark Oppenlander
Marionettes, Inc. was an inevitable book. This collection, compiled late in Ray Bradbury's life, pulls together all of his stories about the titular company that makes lifelike androids. These stories include the novella "I Sing the Body Electric," "Marionettes, Inc." and "The Changeling" among others. The only new material here is a very, very short (and mediocre) story called "Wind-Up World" and a short TV treatment of another story already in the book entitled "Murder by Facsimile."

If you're
Fred Hughes
Oct 26, 2013 Fred Hughes rated it really liked it
Ray Bradbury has a way with words. He approaches the issue from an oblique almost poteical fashion that is attractive to the reader.

In this anthology of 6 short stories we see the positives and the negatives associated with the hubris of creating copies of humans that are machines.

There is the grandmother that looks after three children with diferent needs and adapts to thsoe needs on the run.

We have man intent on killing his cheating wife by doing the act to her duplicate.

Each story asks the q
Jun 08, 2009 Richard rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone: especially those who like real science fiction, fantasy or well crafted tales.
Recommended to Richard by: I have been reading Ray Bradbury since 6th grade.
Although technically these 6 stories are not all new (only 2 are) and the older 4 have been seen in other published works, this collection flows like vintage Ray Bradbury. They connect.

He is such a master of the language: his prose sings like poetry sung by an offstage chorus. At 89 years of age, he is still showing the kids how it's done.

The twists some of these tales take are reminiscent of The Twilight Zone at its height. To say anything specific may give away part of the story of the Fabulou
Jan 22, 2015 Kevin rated it really liked it
Collection of short stories, including the novella "I Sing the Body Electric". Several of the stories involve the company Marionettes, Inc. who have a product that can be created that is an exact replica of you. They are robotic but lifelike and can adapt and fulfill duties you would rather not bother with and no one is the wiser. I was introduced to Bradbury with the Martian Chronicles years ago and this is another great collection of his works. A few of the stories here have never appeared bef ...more
Jun 16, 2016 Robert rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Bradbury does for the emotional and social effects of robots what Asimov did for the logical and programming side. Most of the value comes from the classic novella that starts things off -- "I Sing the Body Electric," although the others are mostly thought-provoking as well, especially in the context of other books I'm reading at the same time -- "What to Think About Machines That Think" and "The Age of Em"
This is a very quick read. Enjoyable & disturbing, though dated and sometimes sexist. The pictures that my mind forms of these stories were that of old noir movies. Not realistic, often simplistic, but compelling. The exception, is the first story "I Sing the Body Electric" In which Bradbury is philosophical about the nature of love and there are moments of humanity written with beauty.
Ebster Davis
May 22, 2016 Ebster Davis rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cindy Matthews
Jun 28, 2011 Cindy Matthews rated it liked it
The concept is strong--what if androids are more "human" than the real thing--but the execution of "I Sing the Body Electric" leaves a lot to be desired. The earlier short stories based on the "Marionette Inc." idea are much more engrossing.
Mar 27, 2013 Jami rated it really liked it
This collection is a fascinating look at what life might be like were we to use robots to replace dead loved ones, to take over for us while we take a break from it all, and take out our vengeance. Lots of fun and thought provoking, two of my favorite things.
Beth Hartnett
Dec 15, 2015 Beth Hartnett rated it really liked it
Ray Bradbury, senior king of sci fi, authored a number of short stories along the themes of the blurred lines between robots and humans. Some of the stories dated back to the late 1940s and some were released for the first time in 2009...all wonderful!
Carly Smoot
Nov 24, 2014 Carly Smoot rated it really liked it
Compared to some of Bradbury's other short stories, like "The Veldt," I really enjoy this one. I find robots adorable and fascinating, so I may be biased based on the topic of this story. Worth the read.
Jun 24, 2009 Greyweather rated it liked it
A decent collection of short stories. I am however greatly disappointed that they decided to use the exact same story twice: Murder by Facsimile being only the screenplay version of the short story Punishment Without Crime.
Mar 24, 2012 Kate rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: sentient non-humans
Recommended to Kate by: its dimensions
And the always flowing river ran its tide to an end and deposited us all on a far shore in the late day.
Jan 01, 2014 Keri added it
Feb 18, 2011 Djenane rated it it was amazing
I really like this book it's a short read. Definitely interesting and different. :)
Jan 09, 2011 Alyssa rated it did not like it
it was okay. not that good. ending is surprising
Sarah N
Jan 01, 2015 Sarah N rated it liked it
An eerie collection of sci-fi shorts about robots and humanity. Extra creepy while I'm in the midst of watching the TV show "Dollhouse."
Jun 17, 2014 Evelyn rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this story. At first, I thought it was a novel and I was disappointed when I found out it was a short story, but I really enjoyed it.
Steve Lasaine
Jul 19, 2016 Steve Lasaine rated it really liked it
Always fun reading about humanoid robots wishing to be human.
Dec 27, 2011 Dominque rated it liked it
The book appeared to have some underlying hatred toward woman. Disturbing.
Aug 02, 2015 Sara added it
BBC radio presentation.
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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 bec ...more
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