BOOK HUGGERS JUNE 2012 SELECTED BOOK:
BRADBURY SPEAKS: Too soon from the cave, too far from the stars/ Ray Bradbury (1920-2012) A unique, intimate portrait, painted in the artist's own words, this collection of wide-ranging essays opens windows not only into Ray Bradbury's life and work, but into his mind and heart as well. This could well be the closest Mr. Bradbury's fans will ever get to an autobiography.
BOOK HUGGERS JUNE 2012 SELECTED QUOTE/LETTER:
FROM RAY BRADBURY/2006 "On the Occasion of Farewell Summer"
ON THE OCCASION OF FAREWELL SUMMER I can only send good wishes to myself. Please excuse me, but when I realize this coming week is the publication of FAREWELL SUMMER, which began more than 55 years ago, I can hardly believe it. Indeed, it was even further back. It was when I was 22 and, you might say, put on my first pair of tennis shoes, and ran like crazy.
I was fully in love with writing from grade school on and in high school I began to write things about the ravine in my hometown. In FAREWELL SUMMER the ravine is the center of everything; the old people and the young live on opposite sides of this ravine that divides the town.
Many years since DANDELION WINE began, which was the beginning of the genesis of FAREWELL SUMMER, I had begun to collect essays and short stories about front porches and summer nights and Fourth of July and all the celebrations that led me into writing. Looking back I realize that I never had a day when I was depressed or suffered melancholia; the reason being that I discovered that I was alive and loved the gift and wanted to celebrate it in my story.
At one point Gourmet Magazine offered me a chance to write an article about helping my grandfather make dandelion wine when I was three in our cellar in Waukegan, Illinois. When I went back to visit my home town I wandered into the shop of the town barber, discovering that he had been there since I was a child and he remembered being my grandmother's boarder and recalled my coming up from the cellar to gather dandelions to make wine with my grandfather.
So FAREWELL SUMMER was embedded in all these memories and recollections. Writing it was a response to my ganglion and my antenna. I do not use my intellect to write my stories and books; I have a gut reaction to the things that my subconscious gives me. These are gifts that arrive early mornings and I get out of bed and hurry to the typewriter to get them down before they vanish.
FAREWELL SUMMER is a result of my having a grand time over many years and splitting that grand time in two pieces. The first half, DANDELION WINE, was published in 1957 and my publisher said that the book was a little to long so we'd have to save the second half and publish it in the future. So FAREWELL SUMMER was the second half and my ganglion and antenna broadcast back and forth and I had a good time of making sure it was delivered forth to my typewriter.
Along the way I have dramatized DANDELION WINE for the stage, and it's only a matter of time now before I do a second script of FAREWELL SUMMER and put it on the stage sometime this year.
In the meantime, I wish all of you the best in reading it because I had delight in realizing that my ganglion and my antenna are still functioning and the darned thing makes, I believe, a good read.
I send all of you my love,
October 11, 2006
Ray Bradbury died Tuesday, June 5, 2012 at the age of 91...On the tombstone he ordered a few years ago, the epitaph reads: "Author of Fahrenheit 451."
EXCERPT from Ray Bradbury obituary in the Wall Street Journal"
"Fahrenheit 451" follows a fireman who is employed by a totalitarian government to burn books, which ignite at the temperature in the book's title. The novel's opening line is read each year by thousands of high school English students: "It was a pleasure to burn."
Among other of Mr. Bradbury's widely known works were "The Martian Chronicles," "The Illustrated Man," both short-story collections, and "Something Wicked This Way Comes," a novel.
Mr. Bradbury grew up mostly in Waukegan, Ill. A Midwestern pastoralism, most evident in his autobiographic novel DANDELION WINE, pervaded his work, despite its sometimes dark themes.
As a boy he devoured the Buck Rogers stories. He moved on to the Oz books by L. Frank Baum, the Tarzan and Martian adventures by Edgar Rice Burroughs, the classic science fiction of Jules Verne and horror of Edgar Allan Poe.
His family moved to Los Angeles, where Mr. Bradbury attended high school. Unable to afford college, he educated himself, spending countless hours at libraries.
His view of books and libraries as cornerstones of civilization and communities inspired "Fahrenheit 451," which Mr. Bradbury wrote on a rental typewriter in the basement of a University of California, Los Angeles library.
Mr. Bradbury was skeptical of technology and the Internet. He disdained cellphones and resisted releasing his titles as e-books.
Yet he welcomed other scientific advances.
He wrote about space flight in Life magazine in the 1960s, rhapsodizing about it as the fulfillment of his childhood fantasies.
The specter of nuclear war haunts some of his most popular work, notably "There Will Come Soft Rains," an elegiac short story that became a chapter in "The Martian Chronicles."
Mr. Bradbury adapted his stories for TV, co-wrote the script for the 1956 film "Moby Dick" and produced children's books, poetry and text for coffee-table books.
He continued to write into the 2000s. By Stephen Miller, Wall Street Journal, June 7, 2012
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