Wednesday, June 06, 2012

RIP Ray Bradbury

RIP Mr. Bradbury.

Ray Bradbury was my very favorite author when I was a teen. I devoured his books like candy, one after the other, over and over again. The first one I read was a chewed up paperback handed down from my older brother and sisters, that they had underlined and highlighted in English classes ahead of me. I was enchanted by that old-timey story of elm tree lined small town America. I was reminiscing about how much I loved that story with a friend of mine a week or so ago, and he asked what the Black folks did in that book. Um, nothing. No Black folks in that town. Huh.

But I did blog about it a couple years ago, when I included one of his phrases in a haiku I wrote. And on my photo blog I was doing a series on water images in literature I love, and excerpted a paragraph from Dandelion Wine. I love his writing so much!

Today I was talking with another librarian about how much of an influence Bradbury was in my life. She had almost that same story of how she had absorbed his books as a teen.

"What's that one about the kids with the room with huge TV walls, where they are in Africa and the parents get eaten by lions?" I asked. I still have vivid images in my mind of that story and I read it about 30 years ago.

"Me too!" She said. "I still think about that one frequently." What more of a tribute can one give an author? So many of the stories that appeared in The Illustrated Man are embedded in my mind.

Here is Steven Colbert reading The Veldt by Ray Bradbury: (read the text at the link)

Here is a list of his books on his website. What is your favorite? Do you have any stories about how they have influenced your life? Please share!


Linda B said...

I've read them my whole life, too Andi, & introduced many to my middle school students. Favorites are many, but the best to me is Dandelion Wine. I taught it several times as a book group & the kids loved it too. I also love Something Wicked This Way Comes. Thanks for the thoughts.

Karen Edmisten said...

Dandelion Wine is my absolute favorite. I love Fahrenheit 451, too, but in a different way.

My teen daughters also love Fahrenheit, but they were having trouble getting into Dandelion Wine ... is it because they expected something else from Bradbury, having read Fahrenheit? Or does one have to be a certain age before one can truly appreciate Dandelion Wine?

Matthew Gary Milam said...

"The October Country" is one of my favorite scary story collections.