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Thursday, 07 June 2012

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I've often been asked if I am related to Ray Bradbury when people learn my surname. I suppose that I am, but it must be very distant.

But it's nice to have someone with the family name being so well known, and rightly so. RIP, Mr. B.

What an amazing author. I'm glad that you included Dandelion Wine in your list, its a gem that often gets overlooked. I've read it so many times over the years that I long ago learned its perfect introduction by heart.

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It was a quiet morning. The town covered over with stillness and ease in bed. Summer gathered in the weather. The wind had the proper touch. The breathing of the world was long, and warm, and slow. You had only to rise, lean from your window, and know that this was the first real time of freedom and of living. This was the first morning of summer.

I'm glad you mentioned Dandelion Wine. I've always thought of it as the great book of Summer.

Ray Bradbury's writing may have been the closest thing to literature that I read voluntarily in my younger days. Amidst the Hardy Boys, the Larry Niven novels and all the fantasy stuff, his prose really stood out. The Illustrated Man, Dandelion Wine and The Halloween Tree were my favorites.

Ack ! How could I have forgotten Something Wicked This Way Comes ?!?

For me it was _Something Wicked This Way Comes_. I still remember climbing out the bedroom window before light and running across the fields to lay down on a grassy hillock and watch the circus train roll into town. His writing was evocative and beautiful, and I was hooked.

Today, when I think of authors who not only write good stories, but whose use of language is so eloquent that just reading becomes an aesthetic experience, I think of Bradbury first.

"I attribute my love of reading to Mr. Bradbury. "

I cannot imagine a higher posthumous tribute to any author.

I have never been a reader of much science fiction but, of course, Ray Bradbury (and Arthur C. Clarke) greatly transcended writings. His imagination plotted a course followed by many, many science developments throughout so much of the 20th century.

I fear we've lost (another) one of the world's greatest and most irreplaceable pathfinders.

I, too in one of those '60s summers read Dandelion Wine in my teen years. About the same period I read Farenheit 451,too. Our little local library in an Arizona mountain town ran out of his books so I turned to T.E. Lawrence's Seven Pillars of Wisdom. Bradbury was much more entertaining and easier to read.

Dear Steve,

POST EXPOSURE is dedicated to Ray Bradbury, because he was the first person to give me any real encouragement as a photographer.

I first met him when I was a student at Caltech. He was a hoot, a ball of fire, and inspiration, and a carnival man all rolled into one. You got wired just listening to him talk. (In his later years, he tended to give canned spiels that weren't half as interesting and exciting, maybe because he repeated the same stories too many times, but if you listened to the Q&A sessions afterwards, when he'd let loose and start extemporizing, you'd get all the verve of that younger Ray.)

I was one of about a dozen students who had dinner with them. Afterwards, we sat around chatting all evening and at one point he went around the room asking people what they planned to do with their lives after they got out of Caltech. I'd only recently decided that working in physics (or for that matter English) was not my idea of how I wanted to spend my life (although I did think, and still do, that they make great hobbies) and what I really wanted to do was be a photographer. So, when he came to me, I rather diffidently said, “Well, I was thinking of becoming a photographer.” Ray clapped his hands and loudly exclaimed, “Good for you!”

That was the first time anyone had expressed genuine approval and enthusiasm for my choice. Boy, that meant a lot to me.


pax \ Ctein
[ Please excuse any word-salad. MacSpeech in training! ]
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I have read Dandelion Wine every year for so long I cannot remember when I hadn't read it. Godspeed, Ray. I will miss you. You will remain alive in our hearts.

Ray Bradbury's stories of grace, wonder, and the exuberance of life
filled this young lad's imagination to the brim in the 1950s and early
1960s. The poetic beauty of 'Dandelion Wine' still resonates with me.
My yellowed copy of 'The Martian Chronicles' is now nearly 50 years
old and cost all of a half dollar back in September, 1962. And now as
a photographer/photography teacher for several years I continue to
draw inspiration from his book 'Zen in the Art of Writing: Essays on
Creativity'. Would like to suggest looking up online a compelling lecture he gave entitled 'An Evening With Ray Bradbury 2001'. Finally,
I share with others a deep gratitude for the 'magic' he gave us all.

Hi Ctein, that is a great account of the man. It's a sign of my age that when I was learning to read proper science fiction AND proper literature, Bradbury was the only author that came up in both lists....

The only person I can think of that has pulled of the same trick, albeit in a much more modern and politicized way, is Iain Banks (aka Iain M Banks) but never in the same novels.

Publishers have completely lost their nerve to the point that they have become like Hollywood movie plots. Forumulaic and predictable. Thank the lord for China Mieville and Paolo Bacigalupi.

So long Mr. Ray Bradbury. Thank you for your books which really inspires lots of people- of course including me.

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