Ray Bradbury

In case you didn’t know, Ray Bradbury passed away last week at the age of 91. Although my young heart doted on fantasy, my closed mind opened to science fiction through his storytelling. As many were, I was forever altered after reading Fahrenheit 451.

Ray Bradbury

From there I ventured onto Mars with the Martian Chronicles

Ray Bradbury - The Martian Chronicles ...Sci-F...

and into darkness with Something Wicked This Way Comes.

Cover of "Something Wicked This Way Comes...

I found more gems in The Illustrated Man,

The Illustrated Man

but my favorite has long been Dandelion Wine.

cover by Tom Canty of a reprint edition

Anyone asked you what you’re reading this summer?  I’ve finally decided.  I’ll be reading everything I can find written by Ray Bradbury, what I already know and love and all that I have foolishly overlooked.  Get to know him a bit better in the interview below.



About T A Smith

Just one of the literacy scholars on this site who wants to explore writing in all its complexities.
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37 Responses to Ray Bradbury

  1. Pingback: I Love Ray Bradbury | Unraveling MaríMar

  2. lesliepaints says:

    I’ll never forget you tipping me off to “Dandelion Wine”, Yousei. I have read it twice and gifted it to many family members due to you! It is truly a song of youth and everything worthwhile! Thank you many times over!

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I have to get a copy of the book. I can’t believe I haven’t gotten one already. Dandelion Wine is a book which can’t really be appreciated or understood until one reads it, don’t you think? You’re very, very welcome for the referral. I’m delighted that you read it and loved it so, since I share your fondness for it.

  3. Geoffrey says:

    Sad news. I looked at the world differently after reading his books … his effect profound. Fahrenheit 451 was one of the first I read … never looked at books (or firemen!) quite the same way again… 🙂

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Thank you for visiting and sharing how Bradbury touched your life. I had similar reactions after reading Fahrenheit 451. I think he is writer accessible to many. I’m looking forward to reading everything I can find of his writing this summer.

  4. ManicDdaily says:

    You know, Yousei, I’ve read very little by him. The only real science fiction I’ve read is Ursula LeGuin and Madeleine L’Engle. Your post has inspired me though – I’m going to get some right away. k.

    • Yousei Hime says:


      Those two (LeGuin and L’Engle) are at the top of my list of favorite writers. I’d recommend Dandelion Wine if you don’t really care for science fiction. I just finished The Cat’s Pajamas, short stories published in 2004. They were good (I’m biased, of course), and showed the influence of recent history. Some of the stories included were written much earlier–that says to me that he has a timeless quality to his writing. I’ll probably post on the collection at some point. Please let me know if you do read some. I’d like to hear what you think, even if you didn’t care for it. Thanks as always for visiting and commenting.

      • ManicDdaily says:

        I definitely will. Of course, I’ve heard of Dandelion Wine, but am pretty sure I’ve never read. I don’t dislike science fiction with the others – with LeGuin – I just find the fantasy so great–all those Ged books! Thanks much. And thanks also for all your kindness. k.

        • Yousei Hime says:

          Yes, the Earthsea books are excellent. Dandelion Wine isn’t a science fiction novel, so it might be more accessible. I’ve enjoyed most everything I’ve read by Bradbury but Dandelion is my favorite. You’re quite welcome. I’m always happy to talk books. 😉

  5. Eve Redwater says:

    So sad that he’s gone, he’s still such an inspiration to me, he always will be. “Envy me for my joy!” he once said, I really do.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I’m looking forward to reading his works this summer. Going to the library to see what they have on Monday. 🙂 Thank you for sharing the quote. I wasn’t familiar with that, and I love it.

      • Eve Redwater says:

        Ah, it’s one of my favourites from him! I got it from one of his talks at Colorado University; you can find it on youtube, it’s about an hour long but full of his wisdom and enthusiasm. 🙂 I’d really recommend it to anyone who writes.

  6. rosemary mint says:

    Have you already begun your reading? I should like to join you. We’ll have ourselves a little book club. 🙂

    I don’t recall which short story it was, but when I was in high school I used one of his pieces for competitive prose-interpretation. I’ve previously mentioned that I do voices. Well, I’m really, really good with accents and character voices. So I did quite well in competition. If you aren’t familiar with this UIL event, the idea is that you “read” aloud a short story (or poem, if you’re competiting in the poetry category) for the judges and a small audience (horrifying). But I can do anything if I’m in character. The trick is that you cannot move your feet, but you can move the rest of your body, lean, put your hands on your hips, etc. Facial expression is key. Inflection. Pause. And voices.

    I’m looking up the Bradbury title now. As I’m searching, I’m discovering these enticing pieces, which I shall have to read very soon:

    “The Strawberry Window” 1954
    “A Scent of Sarsaparilla” 1953
    “The Picasso Summer” 1957
    “The Day It Rained Forever” 1957
    “A Medicine for Melancholy” 1959
    “Frost and Fire” 1946
    “The October Game” 1948
    “The Blue Bottle” 1950
    “The Better Part of Wisdom” 1976
    “Interval in Sunlight” 1954
    “The Black Ferris” 1948
    “Farewell Summer” 1980

    Hmmm. I didn’t see the one I’m looking for. That’s frustrating. I wonder where in the world my prose binder is. I was so good, girl. You should have heard me. If I ever audio-record my poetry, I will do it with a British accent. Now I’ve promised my husband I will learn to do a Cajun accent. 🙂

    Miss you! Hope all is well.

    • rosemary mint says:

      Is this perhaps your longest comment ever? 🙂

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Sounds great. As soon as I get settled I begin my reading. I’ll probably keep a journal and post on it periodically. I’d love to hear you sometime. That’s some courage. I was always terrified of public speaking. Exactly the reason I became a teacher, right? Take care, be around again in a few days.

      • rosemary mint says:

        I am also terrified of public speaking. I would have an internal meltdown at every competition. But like I said, I was really good. So I couldn’t NOT do it, you know? Plus, my art teacher was the sponsor. And I would have done absolutely anything he asked me to. 🙂

        • Yousei Hime says:

          I know that feeling. Same situation for me with music, flute and piano performances. Nerves, nerves, nerves…but too good not to do it. Back on in a few days. 🙂

  7. Jacquie says:

    His short story “All Summer in a Day” had a big impact on many people I know (a lot of us had to read it in grade 6 or 7). It’s a story that sticks in your mind long after you read the last line. I forget which of his collections it’s in, but anyone interested can read it here: http://www.wssb.wa.gov/content/Classrooms/tate/content/freshman/All%20Summer%20In%20a%20Day/story.htm

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I remember reading that in school and teaching it. For many years it made me grateful for the long and varied seasons in my life. Thanks for sharing that one. 🙂

  8. Carmen Perez says:

    My dad is about 10 years younger than Bradbury, but they both grew up in Waukegan, IL. Dad loved Dandelion Wine because he said it transported him right back to his childhood. Like most places, Waukegan’s not the same 80 years later!

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Perhaps the change is one reason why it is so difficult to go home. I visited a favorite house from my childhood and was so disappointed to see how run down it had become. Still, yours is another wonderful connection. Thank you so much for sharing it.

  9. I’ve never read him (I’m not into sci-fi or fantasy) but this makes it tempting.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I’ve read sci-fi and loved some, but I wouldn’t say I’m a fan either. Bradbury is my exception to that rule, because to me he writes about people who happen to be on Mars. It’s always about the person. I’d recommend you take a look at Dandelion Wine. It isn’t fantasy or sci-fi, but a tale of one boy’s summer (if I remember right). Thanks for visiting and sharing.

  10. mareymercy says:

    Oh, I didn’t know he died. I always loved him. His interviews were fascinating until the end. Such a cantankerous, spunky, passionate man. Sorry to hear he is gone but he sure lived a long productive life.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      I didn’t know until a few days afterward, and I hadn’t realized he had lived so long. He is quite the character, but the best ones often are. Thanks for sharing.

  11. aloha Yousei Hime – yeah, everything you’ve said. i noted his passing. in college i read his short story “There Will Come Soft Rains”. i already liked a lot of his work however that story knocked the socks off and …yeah, i got comfortable with him – in an on the edge way. write on Ray, write on. aloha.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Not sure if I read that one. I’ll go looking once I’m settled in for the summer. I really enjoyed the interview video. He’s so enthusiastic…inspiring. Thanks for sharing with me.

  12. nonoymanga says:

    Wow, what a coincidence, the title of my new drawing that I’m going to post this coming Monday. Gee, “something wicked this way comes”…it has nothing to do with the book. Anyway great list of classic books. Cheers. Nonoy Manga

  13. blancaster99 says:

    Very cool video! I’m in a Dystopian novels class this coming fall, but the professor decided to skip 451 because of its popularity–a desire to give lesser known novels more exposure. I’m going to contact her and ask that she reconsider.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Good idea. I suspect she’s already reconsidering, given his passing. I want to know what ends up on that class list. Yes, that’s an order.

  14. He was an awesome guy. Anyone who’s ever read Fahrenheit 451 (and Orwell’s 1984, for good measure) knows better than to trust an e-book or a screen as much as a page.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      Very true. I mourn the closing of every bookstore and fear for libraries. I’d add Canticle For Leibowitz to that list, though I suspect it’s not as widely read. Thanks for coming by and sharing. I’ve missed visiting with you.

  15. Susan says:

    Wonderful! My brother-in-law interviewed him many years ago for our small town radio show. His “people”, when approached, said he was much too busy and important to do such an interview but would pass on the request. Brother-in-law, Mike, was sent Mr. Bradbury’s phone number. The famed author answered his own phone and cordially accepted. He was a fine human being.
    The Illustrated Man is among my first and favorite gripping reads…my love of short stories stems directly from that book. When I learned of his death, I added a segment to my ‘About Me’ description, on my blog, in his honor. RIP Ray Bradbury.

    • Yousei Hime says:

      How wonderful to have such a close connection to the man. I join you in attributing my love of short stories to him. They were fascinating little treasures, unlike so many of the novels I’d read. Thank you for sharing your part of the story. I’ll be sure to visit and look at your “About Me” section.

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