Wednesday, June 6, 2012
I've been reading the news this morning of Ray Bradbury's passing. Longtime readers of the blog (all three of you) know that Bradbury has long been one of my favorite authors, and although death is an inevitability for all of us (and even more so when you're 91) it still comes as a surprise when the moment arrives for such a longtime literary icon.
It's hard to peg any one of Bradbury's works as a definitive favorite. Obviously he's best-known for Fahrenheit 451, but Bradbury's total body of work is huge. Few could write a short story like Bradbury, so for me, his collections of short stories are certainly up there, as is The Martian Chronicles, Dandelion Wine and Something Wicked This Way Comes.
Here's a link to the New York Times obit and here are a few links to my Bradbury-themed blog posts. The first one is comedian Rachel Bloom's screamingly funny but oh-so-not-safe-for-work tribute ,next is a blog I did on Fahrenheit 451 and e-books and the last is a rather dyspeptic rant I banged out in the wake of a particularly irritating Halloween experience last year (I still rather like that one, and still stand by everything I wrote...)
Bradbury was one of the last of the great fiction/fantasy writers to emerge from the mid-20th Century Golden Age of magazine writing. Hell, he may have been the very last. Off the top of my head I can't think of any others that are still alive, and with the state of publishing, reading, and the general level of intelligence and attention span these days, I rather think we'll not see his kind again, so read 'em if you got 'em. And if you don't got 'em, go find 'em, somewhere in the musty, dusty, forgotten corners of those fast-disappearing used bookshops. Preferably a tattered old sixties-vintage pulp paperback with yellowed pages and early space-age era conceptual cover art. That's the only way to read a Bradbury story.
Posted by Chad Love at 11:19 AM