Hope in the Dark: A Note on Ray Bradbury

When a man lives for the better part of a century, his work will leave an impact.  In the case of Ray Bradbury, he leaves us with a body of work that can amaze any reader and inspire any writer.

I cannot say I have read a great deal of Bradbury’s work.  I first read Something Wicked This Way Comes, a book which introduced me to wonder and fear in a fantasy tale.  For me, Bradbury’s writing shines with Fahrenheit 451, a dystopian tale that, unlike 1984 or Brave New World, takes a personal approach.

Like the great classics of dystopian storytelling, Bradbury has said a lot about our modern society in past writing. Fahrenheit 451 has people glued to their televisions–which each take up an entire wall–and fixate on what they watch; no one reads.  Sound familiar?

Regardless, unlike those classics of dystopian storytelling, Ray Bradbury did something with Fahrenheit 451 that no one else writing a dystopia would dare to do:  He offered the reader and the characters alike hope for a better tomorrow.

I take that more than anything else from the master’s work.  Thank you, Mr. Bradbury for giving us an immortal body of awe and wonder.


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