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The author of Fahrenehit 451 and The Martian Chronicles, offers a personal selection of his best stories, featuring "Dandelion Wine," "The Illustrated Man," "The Veldt," "The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit," and twenty other classics. American cousin to Borges and Garcia Marquez, Ray Bradbury is a writer whose vision of the world is so intense that the objects in it sometimes lev The author of Fahrenehit 451 and The Martian Chronicles, offers a personal selection of his best stories, featuring "Dandelion Wine," "The Illustrated Man," "The Veldt," "The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit," and twenty other classics. American cousin to Borges and Garcia Marquez, Ray Bradbury is a writer whose vision of the world is so intense that the objects in it sometimes levitate or glow with otherworldly auras. Who but Bradbury could imagine the playroom in which children's fantasies become real enough to kill? The beautiful white suit that turns six down-and-out Chicanos into their ideal selves? Only Bradbury could make us identify with a man who lives in terror of his own skeleton. And if a generic science fiction writer might describe a spaceship landing on Mars, only Bradbury can tell us how the Martians see it--and the dreamlike visitors from Planet Earth.


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The author of Fahrenehit 451 and The Martian Chronicles, offers a personal selection of his best stories, featuring "Dandelion Wine," "The Illustrated Man," "The Veldt," "The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit," and twenty other classics. American cousin to Borges and Garcia Marquez, Ray Bradbury is a writer whose vision of the world is so intense that the objects in it sometimes lev The author of Fahrenehit 451 and The Martian Chronicles, offers a personal selection of his best stories, featuring "Dandelion Wine," "The Illustrated Man," "The Veldt," "The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit," and twenty other classics. American cousin to Borges and Garcia Marquez, Ray Bradbury is a writer whose vision of the world is so intense that the objects in it sometimes levitate or glow with otherworldly auras. Who but Bradbury could imagine the playroom in which children's fantasies become real enough to kill? The beautiful white suit that turns six down-and-out Chicanos into their ideal selves? Only Bradbury could make us identify with a man who lives in terror of his own skeleton. And if a generic science fiction writer might describe a spaceship landing on Mars, only Bradbury can tell us how the Martians see it--and the dreamlike visitors from Planet Earth.

30 review for The Vintage Bradbury: The Greatest Stories by America's Most Distinguished Practioner of Speculative Fiction

  1. 4 out of 5

    Larry Bassett

    I may have read some Ray Bradbury when I was a teenager but my memory is weak. But when he died in June 2012 I looked for a book. This is the one I found used at an affordable price. It was first published in 1965 and claims to be “Ray Bradbury’s own selection of his best stories.” I have always put Bradbury in the science fiction category. I guess most people do. But the label that I might now select for his short stories is quirky. My thesaurus says these are some synonyms for quirky: idiosync I may have read some Ray Bradbury when I was a teenager but my memory is weak. But when he died in June 2012 I looked for a book. This is the one I found used at an affordable price. It was first published in 1965 and claims to be “Ray Bradbury’s own selection of his best stories.” I have always put Bradbury in the science fiction category. I guess most people do. But the label that I might now select for his short stories is quirky. My thesaurus says these are some synonyms for quirky: idiosyncratic, original, individual, unusual, peculiar, odd, strange, eccentric, and unpredictable. I’d say so! More about this labeling at the end of the review. There are 23 bits of Bradbury in this book, Vintage Bradbury! In The Watchful Poker Chip of H. Matisse, luminaries visit Mr. Garvey who frantically attempts to improve some of his body parts to impress them. The Veldt is the mysterious habitat of lions in the nursery when a psychologist visits to analyze the strange events gnawing at the Hadleys . “A small boy twelve years old with a birth certificate in his valise to show he had been born forty-three years ago” accepts that his transient life is one of Hail and Farewell. A daughter is at last saved from likely death by A Medicine for Melancholy. William Acton has strangled Donald Huxley but must eliminate all his fingerprints that seem to be everywhere including on The Fruit at the Bottom of the Bowl. A man from Earth visits Ylla on Mars and she yearns for a different life. They call their neighbors The Little Mice and wonder about their strange, quiet life. The newborn has the intention to kill his mother who calls him The Little Assassin and after he kills his mother, he moves on to the father. In Dublin The Anthem Sprinters lure an American to compete against the locals to see who can exit the theater first at the end of the movie before the national anthem begins. A white couple in Africa experiences what it is like to be discriminated against by the blacks And the Rock Cried Out there is no place to hide. Old Lady uses her magic to make an Invisible Boy and then pretends she can’t see him. The Earthman drives his truck into the countryside of Mars, has a Night Meeting with a Martian and they debate who is real and who is not. The Fox and the Forest is about a couple who try to escape the future and are chased by the authorities as they try to live in the past. I think I would put Bradbury in the Fantasy category just ahead of science fiction. I rarely read SF so maybe I don’t really understand what makes SF. Did I used to think of the Twilight Zone as SF? I can’t remember it was so long ago. Bradbury seems like the TZ. I seem to want to quibble about this labeling task. More at the end. Following a discourse on the Skeleton, Mr. Harris consults someone who specializes in bones and can rid him of his problem. Dandelion Wine is summer “caught and stoppered” for “opening on a January day with snow falling fast.” The traveler on the spaceship falls into a meteor swarm that looks like a Kaleidoscope from the inside. The fashion models are posing in the Sun and Shadow for the photographer, but why is this naked man interfering? Do the tattoos on The Illustrated Man predict the future or cause the future? The monster comes from out of the Deeps to the sound of The Fog Horn to court the lighthouse. The Dwarf was happy when the mirrors reflected him as a tall man, but then something went horribly wrong. The doctor called it a Fever Dream but the boy knew his body had been taken over and now he had a deadly power that he was eager to try out. Six men share The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit and they are each transformed as the suit works its magic one by one making the whole greater than the sum of all of them. After mutually assured destruction There Will Come Soft Rains. I expected that there would be more intensity in the stories, more emotion but I felt more of a smirk than a laugh and more of a sob than a shriek. I was amused but did not feel better for it. I wanted it to deal more than it did with social issues. These short stories were written in the middle of the twentieth century. I wonder what it would have been like to read them during the time they were written rather than a half century later. And I read on the cover of the book the phrase that very aptly describes the stories: speculative fiction. I like that better than fantasy and more than science fiction. Even better than quirky. I am going to give this book 3½ stars but bump it up to four because this is an author that everyone should read at least once. I may have done my time. Bradbury is very good with words but you can see that a pretty big part of me wants to give it only three stars. But I will stick to four and just go on to my next book.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey Lancraft

    I just recently stumbled upon Bradbury, and I regret that it has taken me this long to read his writing. There was not a single short story in this collection that I did not like. Each had such original characters with such intense emotions. Because of Bradbury’s skillful use of point of view, I could feel every obsession, every fear, every desire from the characters’ perspectives. Each story also seemed to have a twist. It was as if the ending was never what I expected, or it might have been th I just recently stumbled upon Bradbury, and I regret that it has taken me this long to read his writing. There was not a single short story in this collection that I did not like. Each had such original characters with such intense emotions. Because of Bradbury’s skillful use of point of view, I could feel every obsession, every fear, every desire from the characters’ perspectives. Each story also seemed to have a twist. It was as if the ending was never what I expected, or it might have been that I just so caught up in the story that each ending was perfectly completed.What I loved most about this book was the originality of the stories. Bradbury has to be admired for the risks he took in writing many of the stories as they are not safe or usual. I'd like to be a writer that takes the kind of chances Bradbury does. My favorite stories were "The Small Assassin," a tale not about post-partum depression, "Kaleidoscope," a chronicle of astronauts drifting to their deaths in space, and "And the Rock Cried Out," a story where racial roles are switched in the near future.

  3. 4 out of 5

    M.E.

    This is the book that got me hooked on everything Bradbury. My high school creative writing teacher introduced me to Ray Bradbury with Zen in the Art of Writing. I liked it, so I figured I'd go out and find some of his fiction. (I had already read Fahrenheit 451, but I think I was too young when I read it for it to make a real impact on me) I found this book on the shelves at the local bookstore, read it, and have been devouring everything by Bradbury that I can get my hands on. His voice is so This is the book that got me hooked on everything Bradbury. My high school creative writing teacher introduced me to Ray Bradbury with Zen in the Art of Writing. I liked it, so I figured I'd go out and find some of his fiction. (I had already read Fahrenheit 451, but I think I was too young when I read it for it to make a real impact on me) I found this book on the shelves at the local bookstore, read it, and have been devouring everything by Bradbury that I can get my hands on. His voice is so unique and authentic. His prose is so endearing and eloquent. His imagination is both intimate and larger than life. Anyone who loves great literature would be doing themselves a favor by picking up this book--but be warned, it may lead to many late nights with your nose buried in a book.

  4. 4 out of 5

    SheriC (PM)

    Will write up later, original review posted over on BL

  5. 5 out of 5

    Venero Armanno

    my favourite of his collections. This is the one he signed for me while we had a nice private chat in Brentano's. Paris, 6/5/95. A treasure & eternal inspiration. my favourite of his collections. This is the one he signed for me while we had a nice private chat in Brentano's. Paris, 6/5/95. A treasure & eternal inspiration.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Miriam

    I think one of the best things about this collection is that all the stories heighten each other, because you never know what you're going to get. Is it a straight-up childhood adventure? Time or space travel? Supernatural events? So each story makes the others suspenseful, because you never know when the story might take a turn for the surreal or turn out to be not what you thought. There are some themes that reappear: technology and family life, little boys on their sick/death bed, carnivals an I think one of the best things about this collection is that all the stories heighten each other, because you never know what you're going to get. Is it a straight-up childhood adventure? Time or space travel? Supernatural events? So each story makes the others suspenseful, because you never know when the story might take a turn for the surreal or turn out to be not what you thought. There are some themes that reappear: technology and family life, little boys on their sick/death bed, carnivals and freaks, children as strange, ruthless, and parasitical, tourism and its discontents. I think the one that sticks with me most right now is "The Fox and the Forest": a couple tries to escape the endless war of the future by going back in time--not to change anything, just to live. People are sent back in time to find them, but they, too, want to enjoy the past, with its variety and consumer goods (cigarettes and alcohol, but also civil society and picturesque Mexico [which is a whole 'nother issue]). They all realize the future (their present) is headed over a cliff, and they all seem to recognize the advantages of the past, but the enforcers want the escapers to have to be with them for the long ride to the bottom. That to me pretty much sums up where we are: some people want the world to burn, and they don't want anyone else finding a way out. I also liked "The Veldt" with all of its vivid language--the smells of the lions under the blazing sun! And the disconnect between parents and children, magnified by technology, is unsettling and well-written.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Danny Avila

    Ray is the greatest and I love him!!!!

  8. 4 out of 5

    ashes ➷

    Honestly, these really are some of the best Bradbury stories. A great primer to people looking to get into Bradbury's best short stories immediately; I wish I'd found this sooner. That said, Mr. Bradbury's work is occasionally a bit dated, and yes, this collection does include The Story Where All The White People Are Dead So White People Are Now Oppressed And Bradbury Clearly Didn't Consult Any People Of Color On The Matter. So there's that. Honestly, these really are some of the best Bradbury stories. A great primer to people looking to get into Bradbury's best short stories immediately; I wish I'd found this sooner. That said, Mr. Bradbury's work is occasionally a bit dated, and yes, this collection does include The Story Where All The White People Are Dead So White People Are Now Oppressed And Bradbury Clearly Didn't Consult Any People Of Color On The Matter. So there's that.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    I decided to catch up on some old favorites and to discover some new stories after hearing about Ray Bradbury's recent passing. This collection of some of his own favorite short stories was a good place to start. There are two selections from The Martian Chronicles, one of my all time favorite books, and another brilliant story, There Will Come Soft Rains, about a post-apocalyptical automated house that still prepares meals for a long-gone family. Chilling. Here are some of my favorite passages: I decided to catch up on some old favorites and to discover some new stories after hearing about Ray Bradbury's recent passing. This collection of some of his own favorite short stories was a good place to start. There are two selections from The Martian Chronicles, one of my all time favorite books, and another brilliant story, There Will Come Soft Rains, about a post-apocalyptical automated house that still prepares meals for a long-gone family. Chilling. Here are some of my favorite passages: From the short story Hail and Farewell: An old woman reflects on the kids she sees passing by her porch every day: "I look at all the little children's faces g oing by. And I sometimes think, What a shame, what a shame that all these flowers have to be cut, all these bright fires have to be put out. What a shame these, all of these you see in schools or running by, have to get tall and unsightly and wrinkle and turn gray or get bald, and finally, all bone and wheeze, be dead and buried off away. When I hear them laugh I can't believe they'll ever go the road I'm going. Yet here they come! I still remember Wordsworth's poem: 'When all at once I saw a crowd, A host of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath the trees, Fluttering and dancing in the breeze'. That's how I think of children, cruel as they sometimes are, mean as I know they can be, but not yet showing the meanness around their eyes or in their eyes, not yet full of tiredness. They're so eager for everything! I guess that's what I miss most in older folks, the eagerness gone nine times out of ten, the freshness gone, so much of the drive and life down the drain." I was thinking these same thoughts (sans poetry quote) the other day while watching my kids playing - but not as eloquently. The Fox and the Forest: "We were born in the year 2155 A.D. And we lived in a world that was evil. A world that was like a great black ship pulling away from the shore of sanity and civilization, roaring its black horn in the night, taking two billion people with it, whether they wanted to go or not, to death, to fall over the edge of the earth and the sea into radioactive flame and madness." The Illustrated Man: "He ran toward a far crossroads lantern, where all of the summer night seemed to gather; merry-go-rounds of fireflies whirling, crickets moving their song towward that light, everything rushing, as if by some midnight attraction, toward that one high-hung lantern-the Illustrated Man first, the others close at his heels." Kaleidoscope: "When life is over it is like a flicker of bright film, an instant on the screen, all of its prejudices and passions condensed and illumined for an instant on space, and before you could cry out, "There was a happy day, there a bad one, there an evil face, there a good one," the film burned to a cinder, the screen went dark."

  10. 4 out of 5

    James Reyome

    I will confess that my reading of Bradbury has been limited to Fahrenheit 451—a great book, to be sure, but hardly typical of the man's skills as a writer. But I am trying to expand my horizons, and to this end I picked up a copy of this short story collection while on a booking stop at a store not far from Big South Fork. It took a while for me to get to it, but once I did…wow! Essentially this is a "best of the best" circa mid sixties picked by Bradbury himself, stories he considered of merit i I will confess that my reading of Bradbury has been limited to Fahrenheit 451—a great book, to be sure, but hardly typical of the man's skills as a writer. But I am trying to expand my horizons, and to this end I picked up a copy of this short story collection while on a booking stop at a store not far from Big South Fork. It took a while for me to get to it, but once I did…wow! Essentially this is a "best of the best" circa mid sixties picked by Bradbury himself, stories he considered of merit in one way or another. They're all at least good and the genres vary wildly…some of the tales are whimsical, some are thought-provoking, and some are downright terrifying. It's hard (if not impossible) to pick a favorite, but the ones I found particularly affecting were "Hail and Farewell", the story of a boy who never grows up; "The Small Assassin", which is exactly what its title says it's about; and "Night Meeting", which is one you'll remember long after you put the volume down. Hopefully it (and what seems to be a follow up of sorts, the closing "There Will Come Soft Rains") are not prescient. There are also four pieces from "Dandelion Wine", a lovely taste of wonders in store. And monsters, midgets, and aliens. And lions. I didn't mention the holographic lions. Or are they holographic? This is awesome, mind-blowing stuff. Give yourself a couple of weeks when reading these, you'll want time to savor them all. And then be prepared to go out and fill your shelves with more of Bradbury's work.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    Think Black Mirror but better because it's a book I first heard about Bradbury from a friend who liked his more famous novel Fahrenheit 451. I decided to read this book first to get a feel if I'd like his writing style. A lot of people describe him in different ways - some people say he's a science fiction writer, others (like on the back of this book) say he's "the cousin of magical realists." I'd definitely agree with science fiction bit and after reading this collection of short stories, I'd Think Black Mirror but better because it's a book I first heard about Bradbury from a friend who liked his more famous novel Fahrenheit 451. I decided to read this book first to get a feel if I'd like his writing style. A lot of people describe him in different ways - some people say he's a science fiction writer, others (like on the back of this book) say he's "the cousin of magical realists." I'd definitely agree with science fiction bit and after reading this collection of short stories, I'd put him in the category of Chuck Palahniuk and Kurt Vonnegut - two of my favorite authors. If you're into that kind of sci-fi, post-apocalyptic, futuristic and at times humanity-will-destroy-itself premonitory type stuff, you're going to love Bradbury. Furthermore despite the dark themes his stories explore, I think his style of writing is beautifully poetic and structured in such a way that even traditional literature lovers will appreciate it - but perhaps in smaller doses than the more sci-fi inclined readers. I'm surprised to say that I'd also categorize some of the stories in this collection as almost horror-like. My skin was crawling at the end of some of them, but in a good way. Excellent writing and very original ideas. Each story different from the previous one - and a few in there that really make you question reality, humanity and yourself. I will read more of his work. Thanks Bradbury!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Brianna

    After reading Fahrenheit 451, I was decided; Ray Bradbury is my new favourite author. After scrolling through his quotes on this grand ol' site, I found that I loved a couple that came from Dandelion wine. ("I'm alive!") I went to my school's library and sought out the book, stumbling across his collected works instead. Even better! Even more Bradbury than I had anticipated. I'll admit, some of the stories disturbed me. The frequent murderous endings were not what I expected after the downright p After reading Fahrenheit 451, I was decided; Ray Bradbury is my new favourite author. After scrolling through his quotes on this grand ol' site, I found that I loved a couple that came from Dandelion wine. ("I'm alive!") I went to my school's library and sought out the book, stumbling across his collected works instead. Even better! Even more Bradbury than I had anticipated. I'll admit, some of the stories disturbed me. The frequent murderous endings were not what I expected after the downright poetical Fahrenheit 451. (Well, other than the few deaths in that book)For that reason, I am not giving the book the full four stars. I did not enjoy all of the short stories, and some left me shaken. Despite some of the gruesome ends, I still loved the voice and structure of the stories. Some of my favourites are The Veldt, Dandelion Wine,Skeleton, and, in first place, There Will Come Soft Rains. The stories were original and unexpected. Who else can make readers sympathize with a futuristic house? Who else could make me throw down the book and gasp upon reading the ending? Ray Bradbury is an extraordinary writer, and this collection was just proof of what paths he has paved for writers, sci-fi and others.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Michael Bedford

    Having only read Fahrenheit 451 before, I enjoyed reading this collection of short stories by Bradbury. Although there was some great speculative fiction in this collection, some that could easily be described as science fiction, there were also stories that are best described as Americana fantasy. The wide range of stories that Bradbury collected in this edition represent his body of work well. I was specifically impressed with The Veldt, Dandelion Wine, The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit, And The Roc Having only read Fahrenheit 451 before, I enjoyed reading this collection of short stories by Bradbury. Although there was some great speculative fiction in this collection, some that could easily be described as science fiction, there were also stories that are best described as Americana fantasy. The wide range of stories that Bradbury collected in this edition represent his body of work well. I was specifically impressed with The Veldt, Dandelion Wine, The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit, And The Rock Cried Out, Skeleton, There Will Come Soft Rains, Fever Dream, Kaleidoscope, The Fox and The Forest, Night Meeting, The Small Assassin, Ylla, and The Fruit at the Bottom of The Bowl. I realize now that the above list comprises more than half of the stories in the collection, but it just goes to show how captivating Bradbury's writing tends to be. A great read for anyone who likes short stories, mysteries, fantasies, and science fiction.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Colleen Lynch

    I really enjoyed this. I'm not even much of a SciFi nerd (well like, I enjoy SciFi but nowhere near to the point of hardcore actual SciFi fans) and I really liked most of the stories in here. It was a good sidetrack from the stuff I usually read. I'm not even usually a big short-story reader, so this was new for me and I wasn't sure whether I would like it. And, I did. So I guess I'd say take the gamble and check it out because Ray Bradbury is a good writer and has his accolades and reputation f I really enjoyed this. I'm not even much of a SciFi nerd (well like, I enjoy SciFi but nowhere near to the point of hardcore actual SciFi fans) and I really liked most of the stories in here. It was a good sidetrack from the stuff I usually read. I'm not even usually a big short-story reader, so this was new for me and I wasn't sure whether I would like it. And, I did. So I guess I'd say take the gamble and check it out because Ray Bradbury is a good writer and has his accolades and reputation for a reason, I promise.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Erik Graff

    I was already a big fan of Ray Bradbury when I found this collection of his "best" works. Although I'd read many of them before, I reread most and quite enjoyed the rest. I was already a big fan of Ray Bradbury when I found this collection of his "best" works. Although I'd read many of them before, I reread most and quite enjoyed the rest.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Fishface

    A great collection of thought-provoking, shuddery and disturbing stories about how life would be if you changed some of the smaller details.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Annabelle

    Back in the day when books were hard to come by and Bookmooch was my only lifeline, I used to be such a fan of Ray Bradbury's short story collections such as The Illustrated Man, Dandelion Wine, Driving Blind, The October Country, Something Wicked this Way Comes, Quicker Than the Eye, I Sing the Body Electric, The Martian Chronicles. I have since grudgingly rephrased that sentiment. Some (italics) of Bradbury's short stories are wonderful, and will forever remain special and unforgettable to me. Back in the day when books were hard to come by and Bookmooch was my only lifeline, I used to be such a fan of Ray Bradbury's short story collections such as The Illustrated Man, Dandelion Wine, Driving Blind, The October Country, Something Wicked this Way Comes, Quicker Than the Eye, I Sing the Body Electric, The Martian Chronicles. I have since grudgingly rephrased that sentiment. Some (italics) of Bradbury's short stories are wonderful, and will forever remain special and unforgettable to me. A Sound of Thunder, for one, is one of my top 3 favorite SF short stories. And thanks to better access to books, I am now a certified fan of Ray's essays. And I agree with Gilbert Highet, who wrote the foreword: Ray Bradbury is not a writer of science fiction. To that let me add that he is not to be labeled a writer of fantasy, either. To pigeonhole him as either would be unfair. The guy writes about fantasy and science fiction, yes. But he's also given us stories of magic, nostalgia, mystery, with the just the right touch of bitter with the sweet. Now this Vintage collection, as bannered on the cover, was handpicked by the man himself, and contains both new and old finds. Gems like The Fog Horn which, read once, can never be erased from memory. It also made me realize how some of Ray's whimsical writings remind me of the imagination of another of my favorite writers, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and there is one story here that reflects that: The Illustrated Man. Where Marquez writes about magical realism in backwater towns of Colombia, Bradbury's magic at play gives us a peek at a carny's lamentable life in what looks to be dustbowl America. But of the 23 short stories here, only 4 stand out for me: 1) Ylla - Ennui in a patriarchal (so reflective of the sixties, I can almost picture the pastel costumes and set pieces), Martian marriage. Which does not end well. 2) Night Meeting - The best from this collection, and a short story after my own heart! I bet Ray Bradbury went WHAT IF? before writing this one. And I think it qualifies as SF only because it is set in Mars of the future. Or the past? I love the philosophical questions that come into play in a story like this. 3) The Fog Horn - Lighthouse's foghorn beckons a dinosaur from the deep. 4) There Will Come Soft Rains - Indeed, the world will end with a whimper. Two and a half stars (Goodreads doesn't do half stars, so it comes out a 3).

  18. 5 out of 5

    Ashish

    One of my favourite authors, and a relatively underrated one, who often gets over looked when people talk about writers of sci-fi/fantasy/Dystopia . When people recall big names like Asimov, Clarke, Orwell and Huxley, they tend to overlook Bradbury. His books and the stories he weaves don't really fall into one of the genres mentioned here, and speculative fiction describes it really well. Also, he is one of the favourite authors and childhood influences on Neil Gaiman (also one of my favourite One of my favourite authors, and a relatively underrated one, who often gets over looked when people talk about writers of sci-fi/fantasy/Dystopia . When people recall big names like Asimov, Clarke, Orwell and Huxley, they tend to overlook Bradbury. His books and the stories he weaves don't really fall into one of the genres mentioned here, and speculative fiction describes it really well. Also, he is one of the favourite authors and childhood influences on Neil Gaiman (also one of my favourite authors) and he writes at length about Bradbury in his latest non-fiction book "View from the cheap seats". In this book, Gaiman describes rather beautifully the kind of wide-eyed wonderment with which he used to read stories by Bradbury in pulp-scifi magazines. I have already read a few books by Bradbury (Fahrenheit 451, Martian chronicles, and the Illustrated man) and this collection of his short stories is the cherry on top of them all. Beautifully written, with a brilliant sense of looming darkness and subtle irony, his stories are not just entertaining, but also make you think. Despite some of them being set in an incongruous setting (like Mars or an unnamed place) and with perplexing characters, they remain to be utmost human in their depiction; the way they behave, their eccentricities, their flaws and the way they think are a reflection on the human soul. The author does a stupendous job at making them not necessarily likeable but relatable characters. A definite recommendation for anyone who loves to read. He is an American and international treasure of the literary world.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Muller

    Such a fun book to read. I wanted to read after reading a couple of Ray Bradbury short stories including my past favorite "The Veldt," which was subsequently dethroned while reading this book. Bradbury has such a skill of creating environments in such a short period of time with his stories. He describes things in a unique and vivid way when he wants to but then pulls back where he needs to in the story to create a combined feeling of suspense and unknowing. My top five from this book: 1. Selectio Such a fun book to read. I wanted to read after reading a couple of Ray Bradbury short stories including my past favorite "The Veldt," which was subsequently dethroned while reading this book. Bradbury has such a skill of creating environments in such a short period of time with his stories. He describes things in a unique and vivid way when he wants to but then pulls back where he needs to in the story to create a combined feeling of suspense and unknowing. My top five from this book: 1. Selections from "Dandelion Wine" (I will without a doubt be reading this whole collection, I never thought I could read something that makes you feel nostalgic even though you may not have any idea what or when you are feeling nostalgic towards, it was beautiful) 2. The Veldt 3. Fever Dream 4. The Small Assassin 5. The Illustrated Man

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kacey

    What can you even say about Ray Bradbury? He's a legend for a reason. His imagination is still mind-blowing to this day. The way he can write the fantastic and the frightening, the surreal and the serious, and have us all relate to characters even as they're going through the most bizarre experiences. I think all of these were new stories for me except for "The Veldt". "There Will Come Soft Rains" also seemed familiar. As for all the others, they were all fantastic. They chilled me, made me smile What can you even say about Ray Bradbury? He's a legend for a reason. His imagination is still mind-blowing to this day. The way he can write the fantastic and the frightening, the surreal and the serious, and have us all relate to characters even as they're going through the most bizarre experiences. I think all of these were new stories for me except for "The Veldt". "There Will Come Soft Rains" also seemed familiar. As for all the others, they were all fantastic. They chilled me, made me smile, made me think and see the world in a different way. I couldn't even pick out a favorite since they were all so good in different ways. Anytime I read Bradbury, I find a treasure. Even when it's otherworldly, it feels familiar, and I love it every time.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lynda Muir

    I read Bradbury's stories many years ago and decided to re-read some of them in this collection that I found at the discount book store we often frequent. I was not disappointed. Although my memory was vague about some of the stories, I remembered some of them very well. What I hadn't identified in the earlier reading was the psychological underpinnings of all of his stories, even the ones that seem most sc-fi in nature. He had a wonderful way of capturing the darker elements of society and of i I read Bradbury's stories many years ago and decided to re-read some of them in this collection that I found at the discount book store we often frequent. I was not disappointed. Although my memory was vague about some of the stories, I remembered some of them very well. What I hadn't identified in the earlier reading was the psychological underpinnings of all of his stories, even the ones that seem most sc-fi in nature. He had a wonderful way of capturing the darker elements of society and of individuals. He also was able to pinpoint the more admirable qualities that we posses and incorporate them into his stories. Truly a masterful story teller.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Emilie

    Really loved reading The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit during quarantine. It made me realize how much I miss normal things like going out on a Saturday night. Bradbury always paints such a vivid scene, I can always feel, smell, and see them. It's why he is my favorite. Also some good spooky ones in here, like The Small Assassin and The Skeleton. Really loved reading The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit during quarantine. It made me realize how much I miss normal things like going out on a Saturday night. Bradbury always paints such a vivid scene, I can always feel, smell, and see them. It's why he is my favorite. Also some good spooky ones in here, like The Small Assassin and The Skeleton.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Joan

    Every story - save one (I'll let you find out which yourself) - was a gem of fantasy, intrigue, and mystery. The final tale, especially, was not only perfectly final, but left you with a sense of wonder and loss at the same time. Definitely a masterpiece! Every story - save one (I'll let you find out which yourself) - was a gem of fantasy, intrigue, and mystery. The final tale, especially, was not only perfectly final, but left you with a sense of wonder and loss at the same time. Definitely a masterpiece!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Nina

    Unfortunately, due to the current lack of time I could only read a few of the stories in this very impressive collection. The Veldt is, of course, amazing, but any of them take my breath away by their poetry, irony, suspense, and humanity. I definitely need to get back to this

  25. 4 out of 5

    Hogfather

    An essential collection of essential stories by an essential author. Ray Bradbury is one of the few indisputably great authors of the last century, and here he collects a handful of his favorite short works.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Bill

    Not bad. Some stories are good, some not so good.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kaley

    i loved each of these stories in a unique way

  28. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    I met some new friends in this book, and renewed my acquaintance with some old ones, as well. Every time I read Bradbury I am awestruck by his poetic use of language, his vivid and colorful imagery, his sheer joy in the tales he spins for our delectation and his own amusement. Among my favorites: The Fruit At The Bottom Of The Bowl was an old friend who had stayed with me for many years. I had often recollected this tale as I cleaned and dusted and wiped and scrubbed. What a pleasure it was to rea I met some new friends in this book, and renewed my acquaintance with some old ones, as well. Every time I read Bradbury I am awestruck by his poetic use of language, his vivid and colorful imagery, his sheer joy in the tales he spins for our delectation and his own amusement. Among my favorites: The Fruit At The Bottom Of The Bowl was an old friend who had stayed with me for many years. I had often recollected this tale as I cleaned and dusted and wiped and scrubbed. What a pleasure it was to read it again, and realize it had lost none of its impact. The Veldt, of course...another old friend. The lions, feeding, is an image that lingered for years. The Illustrated Man is still as striking and unnerving as the first time my teenage self encountered it. A new-to-me story was The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit. I had heard of it, of course, but don't remember ever reading it. What a luscious treat, and probably my favorite story in the whole collection. The sheer zest of these hopeful young men and their ridiculous plan to share the suit; the poignant stories they share of their night on the town; their almost-justified suspicion that the suit will be taken from them somehow; all is told with such energy and sense of place that I felt I was there, and had joined those young men in their border town adventure. Something that struck me in this collection was how often Bradbury used Mexico as a setting or Latinos as protagonists. Unusual for the time period in which he wrote these. I wonder if he lived in Mexico for a time, or had Latino family members. Another notable new friend was The Anthem Sprinters. Lovely, simply lovely. (Note to self: find the play!)

  29. 5 out of 5

    Almaraz_m

    A book full of short stories that challenge the mind and stretch the imagination. I was at times both fascinated and disgusted at Bradbury's views human nature. A book full of short stories that challenge the mind and stretch the imagination. I was at times both fascinated and disgusted at Bradbury's views human nature.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jeff Griffeth

    Much smaller in size than some of the other Bradbury short story tomes, this book (which I found years ago at the recently shuttered and already missed used bookshop on Franklin Street) contains only 26 stories, but the greats are all here. “The Fog Horn” is a good example to demonstrate Bradbury’s power as a writer. On the surface of the tale, two lighthouse keepers witness a monstrous creature from the depths of the ocean rise up and destroy their beacon. But the story is really about isolatio Much smaller in size than some of the other Bradbury short story tomes, this book (which I found years ago at the recently shuttered and already missed used bookshop on Franklin Street) contains only 26 stories, but the greats are all here. “The Fog Horn” is a good example to demonstrate Bradbury’s power as a writer. On the surface of the tale, two lighthouse keepers witness a monstrous creature from the depths of the ocean rise up and destroy their beacon. But the story is really about isolation, loss, and loneliness. It is not played for horror, but maintains its somber, melancholic atmosphere throughout. Every note in this story is perfect, from the building tension, to the narrator’s stunned reaction when the enormous beast fully emerges from the water: "I don’t know what I said. I said something." Also included are classics such as "The Veldt," "The Fox and the Forest," "Skeleton," "Kaleidoscope," and "There Will Come Soft Rains."

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