June 5th was the anniversary of Ray Bradbury’s passing and as a tribute to him and his work, we’re featuring the Top 5 Must Read Ray Bradbury Stories!
#5 – The Veldt
This story comes from Bradbury’s collection, The Illustrated Man, and it is one of his most classic. Bradbury is very good at turning seemingly innocent things on their head and making them sinister and that’s exactly what he does in this story. In The Veldt, children’s play turns deadly. The story also features a sort of “holodeck” much like in Star Trek, but imagined long before the show.
#4 – The Small Assassin
This story comes from Bradbury’s collection, October Country, which is one of his most macabre collections. This list could easily include The Jaror The Skeleton (stories also found in the collection), but The Small Assassin manages to create a feeling of such ominous dread, it truly is a must read. In it, a woman suspects the child she is carrying is evil. Ridiculous, right? Except maybe she’s right…
#3 – Something Wicked This Way Comes
Bradbury’s fiction lends itself best to the short form, but he did manage to pen a couple of short novels as well. Something Wicked This Way Comes is one of those, and it’s very creepy. About two boys who, in many ways are opposites of each other, and their encounters with a travelling carnival that is in town.
#2 – The Martian Chronicles
The Martian Chroniclesis a collection of interconnected short stories telling the story of man’s colonization of Mars. It sounds like classic science fiction, but it is so much more. Bradbury depicts many of the events in such an uncanny and creepy way. In The Third Expedition, for example, an expedition from Earth encounters a town populated by a long-lost family. The town is eerie, but comfortable and, let’s just say, the ending is one to remember.
#1 – Fahrenheit 451
Probably Bradbury’s most famous work, Fahrenheit 451 is set in a near-future America where books are contraband and the government controls all flow of information. The story follows a “firefighter,” who is on a team that goes around burning books. It’s a poignant tale and one that’s social commentary is still relevant. We can only imagine how Bradbury would write this novel today.