The Sword and Laser discussion

Name your favorite Ray Bradbury book

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message 1: by Bernardo (new)

Bernardo | 28 comments I'm so sad today about Ray Bradbury.

My favorite stories from him are:

The Martian Chronicles
Something Wicked This Way Comes
Sound of Thunder

message 2: by Rachel (last edited Jun 06, 2012 08:59AM) (new)

Rachel (rachelsessum) | 9 comments Hands down Fahrenheit 451.

message 3: by Nick (last edited Jun 06, 2012 09:08AM) (new)

Nick (whyzen) | 1295 comments I've only read two of his books sadly. Of the two I've read, Fahrenheit 451 was my favorite but he did a unbelievable job with atmosphere and suspense with Something Wicked This Way Comes.

message 4: by Beth (new)

Beth | 25 comments The Martian Chronicles is my top favourite, and I remember loving Dandelion WIne and I Sing the Body Electric when I was a kid.

message 5: by Dave (new)

Dave I've only read Fahrenheit 451. It was good.

I'll need to read some of his others.

message 6: by Kris (last edited Jun 07, 2012 09:23PM) (new)

Kris (kvolk) definitely The Martian Chronicles with Elton John's Rocketman in the background.

message 7: by Rachel (new)

Rachel (rachelsessum) | 9 comments For those who loved Fahrenheit 451, you should read A Pleasure to Burn. It is a compilation of short stories and novellas in the Fahrenheit 451 world, and it just came out about a year ago.

message 8: by Brad (new)

Brad | 21 comments I've only read Fahrenheit 451, but I was just thinking about putting The Illustrated Man on my reading list. Now I definitely will.

I never read the book of Something Wicked This Way Comes, but I saw the film adaptation, featuring a wonderfully creepy Jonathan Pryce.

message 9: by P. Aaron (new)

P. Aaron Potter (paaronpotter) | 585 comments Arkham House, the printer founded by H.P. Lovecraft collaborator August Derleth, got in the habit of issuing small runs of well bound weird fiction. One of their number was "Dark Carnival," a short story collection, and the first book by then unknown Ray Bradbury.
For years, I made a habit of checking all bookstores, Goodwill shelves, and yard sales for a copy. It was a bit of a joke, of course: there were only 3,000 copies printed, and there was no chance one would turn up in a junk bin. But it was an amusing way to pass the time while I bought other books. And I saw Bradbury a few times at conferences and talks and signings over the years, even handed him a letter and received a gracious reply while I was in grad. school at UVA. He hadn't seen a copy in years, he noted.

Then, unfortunately, my mother heard about this habit, and ruined it all for me by contacting Powells, which had a copy in their rare books room, and getting it for me as a graduation present when I earned my Ph.D.

Last year, Bradbury came to the University where I now teach (scifi and fantasy, among other subjects) and write. He was being honored by the Eaton Collection, the largest public archive of speculative fiction in the world, housed on my campus. I dumped the kids on my tolerant wife and made my way to the ceremony and talk. The man was clearly tired, and I got anxiously into the terribly long line for signings. Just a few people short of my position, they announced that they would have to cut the signing off, as Mr. Bradbury needed to rest.

I grabbed the nearest organizer and told him I *had* to get this book signed. They tried to shrug me off, but I got up to Mr. Bradbury's assistant and explained the situation. He hustled me up to the table.

"Ray? There's something kind of special here you'll want to see."
I held out the book. It seemed to take him a moment before he realized what it was. "I haven't seen one of these in...years."
"I know," I said. "You told me that in a letter once. You forgot to sign this one."
He nodded gravely. He had to fumble at the pen a few times before he got it firmly in hand, but then signed with a flourish familiar from the two other times I'd been to signings. He handed the book back carefully. "This is special," he said. "You take good care of this."

I nodded, unable to speak. As the organizers for the conference helped him to stand, Bradbury's assistant shook my hand. "Thank you for that. I think that really made his day." I carefully rewrapped the now doubly-precious volume in its plastic and paper covers and held them tightly as I made my way out of the auditorium.

On the way out the door, one of the Eaton Collection reps came over and casually asked whether I might be interested in selling it. I told him to go to hell.

message 10: by Kris (new)

Kris (kvolk) P. Aaron wrote: "Arkham House, the printer founded by H.P. Lovecraft collaborator August Derleth, got in the habit of issuing small runs of well bound weird fiction. One of their number was "Dark Carnival," a shor..."

Great story P.Aaron...

message 11: by Robert (new)

Robert Osborne (ensorceled) | 79 comments My favourites are The Martian Chronicles, The Illustrated Man and Dandelion Wine. I liked a bunch of his others including Machineries of Joy, S is for Space and R is for Rocket. Something Wicked was good.

Suddenly very sad. I think I'll put The Martian Chronicles on top of my read pile.

message 12: by Jlawrence, S&L Moderator (new)

Jlawrence | 960 comments Mod
Martian Chronicles - some of the images from it still stay with me.

message 13: by Madison E. (new)

Madison E. (madiemartin) | 40 comments @Aaron That was a nice story.

I'm with Nick. I've only read Fahrenheit 451 and Something Wicked this Way Comes, both among my favorite books.

message 14: by [deleted user] (new)

Robert wrote: Suddenly very sad. I think I'll put The Martian Chronicles on top of my read pile.

Same here.

message 15: by Paul (new)

Paul  Reed | 26 comments Dandelion Wine and Farewell Summer

Live Forever, Ray. Just like Mr Electro said...

message 16: by kvon (new)

kvon | 562 comments The short story 'There will come soft rains'.

I once found dandelion wine at a small winery in New York. It did taste like summer with every swallow.

message 17: by Stephen (new)

Stephen | 4 comments I'll have to be somewhat cliched and say Farenheit 451. I do love his short fiction aswell.

message 18: by Anne (last edited Jun 06, 2012 07:30PM) (new)

Anne | 336 comments Books: Fahrenheit 451.

Short Story: All Summer in a Day. (TV version by BBC)

message 19: by Kevin (last edited Jun 06, 2012 07:43PM) (new)

Kevin Xu (kxu65) | 1081 comments Glad I got both Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury and The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury signed by Ray Bradbury about a year after I was born from the local library book sale last October. I will always have his signature to remember him by.

message 20: by Charles (new)

Charles | 248 comments Definitely Something Wicked This Way Comes. Lots of conflict and has that sense of dread while still being optimistic in the end.

message 21: by Joseph (new)

Joseph | 2268 comments Now Stories of Ray Bradbury is staring down at me from the shelf giving me the same look my cats do when they feel I haven't fed them recently enough.

message 22: by Edward (new)

Edward Brock (edbrock) Something Wicked This Way Comes It fueled my imagination & set me on the path to a lifetime love of reading.

message 23: by Tassie Dave, S&L Historian (new)

Tassie Dave | 3542 comments Mod
"Something Wicked This Way Comes".

That was one of my favourite books when I was young.

message 24: by Nick (new)

Nick (whyzen) | 1295 comments I've been watching the old Twilight Zone episodes on Netflix and just watched "I Sing the Body Electric". I know it was based on a short story by Bradbury. What a great and touching story about how loss affects children.
I Sing The Body Electric

message 25: by Stan (new)

Stan Slaughter | 359 comments Frankly,

Most of Rays books were so d@mn depressing, that I pretty much ended up disliking almost everything he wrote.

But, if I had to pick - I'd choose the The Illustrated Man

message 26: by Richard (new)

Richard | 221 comments I read a lot of Bradbury way back in JR High (over 30 years ago). No one title stands out in my mind now, perhaps I'll have to see what's on the shelves at the used book store. Maybe we should make a Bradbury novel the july laser pick?

message 27: by Casey (new)

Casey | 654 comments I've only read a handful but I really was enthralled with Something Wicked This Way Comes.
Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury

message 28: by Richard (new)

Richard | 221 comments I just spent $23 at the used book store for 7 Bradbury novels in paperback, only 2 of which I had read in my youth.

message 29: by Irene (new)

Irene McHugh (irenemchugh) | 25 comments @P. Aaron

Thank you for sharing that Ray Bradbury story. Some friends and I were discussing his short stories and novels the other night. I shared your signing story with them and they loved it, especially the going to hell part.

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